As part of our support service to Oxfordshire primary schools we continue to provide impartial advice regarding IT services. In response to the above communication from OCC stating that some of their IT support services will no longer be available after 31 August 2015, many schools have asked 123ICT for advice.
In our opinion, there is no need for a knee jerk reaction to the announcement and we have started to carefully look at the implications on behalf of schools this week. However, with schools being asked to complete OCC buyback forms for 2015/16 by the end of today, the timing of the letter has caused concern amongst some schools.
Our advice is quite straight-forward; we recommend that schools continue with their OCC Buy Back plans for 2015/16.
The cost of the buyback IT services offered by OCC (i.e. Sophos, OPT, Office365, RM Integris Support) remain the same as the 2014/15 charges so if you have been happy with the level of OCC support for these services then it makes sense to renew these. Please see below for an outline of the length of the contracts available via OCC buy back:
- Sophos will be offered by OCC until April 2016 and in our opinion, this remains the most cost effective anti-virus solution available to Oxfordshire primary schools
- Office 365 email support is for the whole year; 123ICT provide this as part of their support contract but some schools have benefited from the extra support provided by OCC.
- RM Integris support via OCC can be renew until 31 August 2015. If you are thinking of changing your RM Integris support from OCC then we recommend you contact RM directly (Hayley Ekins – firstname.lastname@example.org). RM offer the best pricing available for RM Integris support (compared with OCC or Turn IT On) and the feedback we have had from schools has been excellent.
- OPT support via OCC can be renew until 31 August 2015. 123ICT have been recommending Kim Marczak freelance OPT support since 2011 and we will be continuing to offer Kim’s expertise as part of your free 123ICT staff meeting options. Our recommended SIMS partner, Scomis also provide assessment tools and training which forms part of their SIMS hosting and support as standard.
123ICT will continue to work with OCC and our MIS partners (RM, Kim Marczak, Scomis) to firm up our advice during the summer term but please feel free to contact me (or any of our 123ICT consultants) for further advice.
We hope this helps and that you manage to have a break during the forthcoming half term holiday.