Astrix Customer Case Study – Managed Services for a Global Specialty Chemicals Company

Posted on Case Study. 5 April, 2021

Overview

A global specialty chemicals company was running Thermo Fisher Scientific SampleManager LIMS™ and Atlas CDS on an SQL server at a number of different sites to collect, store and report operational data. These systems were integrated with instruments, process control systems and SAP. The company initially used internal resources to support the system, but as the company expanded, the resources did not have the time to do analytical work and support the user base. To provide the necessary services, the company contracted with Astrix to provide Managed Services for these systems.

The customer received training from vendors at the time of implementation of the SampleManager LIMS and Atlas CDS systems. However, their “super” users were not able to provide the necessary services to address technical issues in these systems. The customer made the decision to address this problem with Astrix Managed Services.

The customer expected Astrix Managed Services to provide:

  • A support team with deep application knowledge and understanding of current configurations
  • Good communication plan to facilitate appropriate escalation of problems
  • Rapid response time for high-severity issues
  • In-depth knowledge of the application architecture and integrations between systems
  • Configuration or customization of system code when necessary to address an issue
  • A service Level Agreement (SLA) that identifies the priority of the incident and defines the response and resolution times
  • A monthly report that identifies all reported issues, date/time submitted, response date/time and resolution date/time

Services Provided:

The customer and Astrix have created a partnership with four levels (Level 1 through Level 4) of support to provide the necessary services for the customer’s software systems. Level 1 Support is provided by the customer’s site super users. If Astrix discovers issues in the core modules of the system, the software vendor will be contacted to provide Level 4 Support.

Level 2 and 3 Support are provided by Astrix on a 24 hour, 7 days per week basis. Any issues reported to the Astrix “Service Desk” by the customer will be logged and assigned a support level as defined below:

Level 2 Support:

Level 2 Support handles issues that cannot be resolved by Level 1 Sup­port. Level 2 Support utilizes in-depth knowledge of the application to resolve known issues already documented that are outside the technical ability of Level 1. Duties for Level 2 Support include:

  • Processes incoming service requests
  • Provides support for IT related issues/questions
  • Resolves standard requests
  • Implements changes in the system which require configuration
  • Performs testing activities on the configuration changes
  • Updates necessary technical and service documentation
  • Provides initial analysis of the complex problem tickets before escalating to Level 3 support
  • Provides input to the business stakeholders when needed

Level 3 Support:

New and difficult issues will be resolved by Level 3 Support. This support level requires experts on both the application involved and the customer’s business processes. Research, troubleshooting and debugging of code is typically needed to diagnose and resolve a Level 3 issue. Duties for Level 3 Support include:

  • Resolves complex incidents and problems
  • Implements enhancements and solves issues that require update or change in the code (customization and configuration of the system)
  • Performs environment management (all environments)
  • Performs test activities on the requested changes
  • Updates necessary service and technical documentation
  • Acts as a contact and escalation point for/to other technical support teams
  • Escalates the problems to the system vendor support if the root cause analysis reveals that issue lies in the core modules of the system

Results Delivered:

Astrix successfully delivered a customized Managed Services solution to the company. The services delivered have provided a number of important benefits to the customer:

  • Cost Savings – Instead of excessive overtime costs incurred during times of application technical issues, the customer now has a predictable monthly fee.
  • Operational Efficiency – The customer is experiencing significantly reduced downtime due to technical issues.
  • Simplified Business – Customer communications with technical support has been reduced from multiple vendors to a single point of contact that has highly skilled technical resources.
  • Core Business Focus – The customer has gotten out of the application management and maintenance business and is more able to focus resources on its core business as a result.

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Astrix has been an industry leader for over 25 years in helping scientific organizations implement and integrate improved informatics systems in the laboratory. Our experienced team of expert informatics consultants bring together technical, strategic, regulatory and content knowledge to provide the most effective solutions to problems faced by scientific organizations. Our domain experts have helped hundreds of companies globally effectively navigate their digital transformation journey.

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