One of 67 counties in Pennsylvania and located in the Pittsburgh metro area, Butler county was named for Revolutionary War General Richard Butler. While the county is home to approximately 184,000 citizens, the county’s information technology department employs 6, and is responsible for all computers, network, and other technology for Butler County Government. The IT Department supports over 600 workstations and 300 printers connected across the County network. Also supported are approximately 40 servers that store data files and provide other functions for County employees.
Bob Moyer, Director of Butler County’s IT Department, needed an email archiving system that would satisfy compliance requirements as well as help with storage and email retrieval issues. “We needed to come into compliance with five separate acts, including a Right-To-Know Act, a county records Act, and two legal rules,” Moyer says. But an email archiving system would slim down redundant email storage and enable users to quickly find and retrieve archived mail. “We only had manual retrieval of email, which was time-consuming and cumbersome,” Moyer says.
After searching for a suitable email archiving system, Butler County’s IT department decided on Symantec Enterprise Vault and eDiscovery. “Our priorities were ease of use for both users and administrators, that it meet government requirements, and provide something that would require a low level of support,” Moyer says. But because of his small in-house department and a large number of users, Moyer knew he needed to outsource the installation and training. Moyer says Nortec’s quote was not only the lowest, but it was the only company that ever quoted fixed-price installation. “Nortec could do the project without outsourcing the installation to a third party and had more experience,” Moyer says.
Nortec began by holding a planning meeting, wherein they worked with Butler County to develop a timeline, and based on their priorities and goals, made some additional recommendations. “Nortec recommended HP’s LeftHand SAN technology – which was a different SAN solution than we’d initially considered because it had been out of budget. But with Nortec, we were able to get better pricing.”
Over the next six months, Nortec installed the LeftHand network storage units, Enterprise Vault software, and integrated the Exchange server and Backup Exec. Currently, Nortec is fine-tuning the archive retention policies and will begin the last phase of the project, which will be to install the e-Discovery modules and train the staff.
Aside from satisfying Butler County’s main compliance requirement, the archive system will remove the disk storage problems created by users retaining a large amount of e-mails. The new system will also immediately reduce the amount of storage required on the Exchange server. And as the county migrates personal e-mail folders to the archive, there will be a reduction of storage on the employees’ personal allocated storage as well. “Our main benefit was compliance, but we’ve also gotten a lot more storage space and it’s easier and faster for our users to find old emails,” says Moyer.