The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) has opted for communications and integration specialist KCOM to upgrade its wide area network and bolster its lifesaving operations.
Steve North, IT project manager at the RNLI, explained that the organisation will gain a faster internet connection to improve operations and further spread the message of its work to the media and aid fundraising efforts.
“Our aim is to give our stations' staff and volunteers the best service possible. Lifeboat crews and volunteers input the details of lifeboat launches and then upload video footage from their rescues, which can be used for media, training and fundraising,” he said.
“A faster connection helps us to spread the word about the lifesaving work we do much more quickly. The RNLI is dedicated to saving lives at sea, and investing in better technology at our lifeboat stations around the coast will help to do this.”
Rather than opt to upgrade the WAN with multiple companies, the RNLI went with KCOM so that it can manage a dedicated single partner and maintain closer working relationships to ensure that the upgrade project meets the needs of all of the RNLI’s workers, volunteers and supporters.
The project, which is currently underway, involves the provision of two large bandwidth connections with backup connections provided by the RNLI’s Poole headquarters.
KCOM has already set up 200 private FTTC and DSL connections across some of the UK’s most remote coastal locations.
The company helps the RNLI to manage and monitor hardware installations of wireless devices and managed switches, and provides consultancy on how to map out the most suitable and cost-effective connectivity option for lifeboat sites while meeting the needs and support requirements specific to each location.
Many organisations are pursuing digital transformation projects to inject more digital services into their operations and business, but the RNLI project is more a basic network upgrade.
However, having a robust WAN is an important way to lay the connectivity foundations to allow for more effective digital projects in the future.
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