Let’s talk tech – Quickfire Q&A

It’s no secret the global tech sector is advancing at an astonishingly rapid pace – not least in relation to the now integral role of digital transformation in spearheading growth and success. But no matter the size or scope or your organisation – or how sophisticated your innovation strategy is – the only way to drive significant change is to leverage the power of people.

So, to champion some of the industry’ finest talent, and gain some insight into the minds of individuals from across the tech space, we’re inviting friends and partners of the business to take part in our quickfire Q&A.

Up next, it’s Jon Pickering, chief executive officer at Mizaic

Tell us about your role at Mizaic and the part you play in the tech sector:

MediViewer, our electronic document management solution (EDMS), digitally enables all unstructured patient data in hospitals — think paper and PDF-type documents — to be used for clinical insight, driving better patient care.  We are playing a significant role in enabling a future paperless NHS, taking hospitals away from paper patient medical records, into a new digital era.  

What innovation was the turning point for your organisation, to get it to where you are now?

It’s difficult to think of one particular turning point, but I am going to say it: AI. This could be big for us, like many others. We are actively looking at AI now, specifically how we can automate key patient insights from data to transform the clinician and patient interaction — giving the clinicians more information about the person who sits in front of them during appointments.

And where’s next for your business?

We have a clear and exciting plan for our EDMS. We know how much value we add to clinicians and the sum of money we save for hospitals, so we’re keen to keep sharing our message across the UK and overseas; we’re currently gathering information, looking at the Middle East and US for potential international expansion. I’m also a big advocate for partnerships and working with other healthcare tech companies to enhance the value we collectively bring to our customers, so that’s another area we’re focusing on.

The biggest misconception faced by the tech sector is…

That you need to move rapidly on AI, otherwise your business will die. I think an iterative approach to how you apply the technology is the best approach, ensuring genuine customer value linked to use cases. That’s why we’re following the same route at Mizaic. It will advance quickly, and mature in terms of performance and outcomes as a result. So, for me, don’t rush it.

What do you think will be the biggest tech trend over the next 12 months?

I’m going to say two: data and automation. The value we can extract from data is a key trend right now, and clearly that will continue. An automate-first approach will also be intrinsic within most tech business strategies. Clearly AI will play a key role across both of these, as well as other technologies like robotic process automation (RPA). 

What top tip would you give to an individual trying to excel in their tech career?

Adopt a continuous learning attitude — whether that’s reading books or listening to podcasts, keep thinking about what comes next and how that impacts you and your career.

You can’t know everything, so maintaining focus on one specialism, rather than becoming a generalist, is something I believe creates more value for you and your employer.

The next purchase on my personal tech wish list is…?

I would love to own a Ferrari 812 one day, but that’s a long way off for multiple reasons — including that my wife might have other ideas!

On the realistic front, a new set of golf clubs is never too far away…

And what is your earliest memory of tech in your life?

When I got my first computer for Christmas. For those old enough to remember, it was a Commodore 64. Before that, it was playing a game called Asteroids on an Atari gaming console (probably 40 years ago!).

What is one longstanding piece if tech you are shocked is still used today?

With the growth of cloud and digital repositories, I’d say USBs and storage drives — at least at their current scale.

If you are without the internet for an hour, what would be the first activity you resort to, to pass the time?

Walk my dog in the local fields, or read.

That’s all for this month’s Q&A! Want more insight like this? Catch up on our previous interview with Mike Dimelow, chief commercial officer at Bloc Ventures.

Climb UK made its much anticipated return to the tech capital of the north this month. Now in its second year, the two-day expo saw a range of delegates, speakers, and active investors take over Leeds Dock on 5-6 June for a foray into industry, innovation, and investment in the tech space and beyond.

Launched by Investor Ladder, the UK’s largest network of investors, Climb UK offers a critical opportunity for start-ups, scale-ups, and blue-chips to connect with investors on a more local stage. Yet, already, it has garnered significant attention from industry leaders, innovators, and experts across the globe.

“I was surprised how busy the event was, especially on the second day,” says Tim Mercer, CEO at Vapour. “But it was organised expertly. Not only was the location ideally suited, the visuals — staging, lighting, and video — were executed perfectly. And on the operational side of things, the whole thing ran like clockwork, which isn’t easy to achieve.”

This year’s insight spanned a range of thought-provoking topics, including founder wellbeing, artificial intelligence, GreenTech, HealthTech, cyber security, diversity and inclusion, and so much more.

Tim continues: “Showcasing young talent seemed to be a priority, offering help and advice in a market that is sometimes difficult to navigate for even the most experienced professionals — let alone those breaking entry. With plenty of conversation surrounding women in tech, it was also a tonic to see that reducing gender disparities remains at the top of the agenda.

“It was great not only to knowledge-share with leading lights in the industry, but to connect with forward-thinking professionals who share the same thirst for innovation. I’m already fired up for next year’s expo. In the meantime, Vapour remains committed to exploring opportunities for strategic differentiation into 2024 and beyond — delivering truly value-add services that meet the needs of our customers as their priorities pivot.” 

Keen to continue conversations with Tim and the team? Get in touch.

It’s no secret that the global tech sector is advancing at an astonishingly rapid pace – not least in relation to the now integral role of digital transformation in spearheading growth and success. But no matter the size or scope or your organisation – or how sophisticated your innovation strategy is – the only way to drive significant change is to leverage the power of people.

So, to champion some of the industry’ finest talent, and gain some insight into the minds of individuals from across the tech space, we’re inviting friends and partners of the business to take part in our quickfire Q&A.

Up next, it’s Mike Dimelow, chief commercial officer at Bloc Ventures…

Tell us about your role at Bloc Ventures and the part you play in the tech sector

My role as chief commercial officer is centred on growth. And that’s two-fold — in one sense, it means accelerating the companies we’ve invested in, and in another, it’s about attracting investors for Bloc Ventures in order to back our own activity.

What innovation was the turning point for your organisation, to get it to where you are now?

Recognising that investment in startups really is a full-contact sport. Most investors think they can provide funds and take a backseat, but that’s not the case for every venture.

Companies, partners, and investors engaged in commercialising a product must be prepared to actively contribute — from validating and selling products, to exploring new markets and partnerships to facilitate progress.

And where’s next for your business?

To sell more products and ABC. Any startup founder or tech CEO has two jobs — to sell shares in their own company and raise funds for further growth, and sell products to customers. Across both of these areas, we’ll be working on our roadmap to ensure our future strategy evolves in line with the demands of stakeholders and customers alike.

The biggest misconception faced by the tech sector is…

That success happens overnight. Really, it’s a 10-year thing.

What do you think will be the biggest tech trend over the next 12 months?

We’ve been talking about AI and computer science for decades. Now, all the stars are aligning — we can compute more things, software is more sophisticated, and AI is becoming a real possibility. It touches every aspect of our lives, and has a profound impact.

But humans need to get savvier in tandem. Only around 20% of companies, I’d estimate, are developing truly meaningful, value-add technology. Much of the rest is misleading claims masked as ‘innovation’. So, I think there’s also an ‘AI winter’ to come, where the industry will need to reconcile — following which, that 20% will make even bigger waves.

What top tip would you give to an individual trying to excel in their tech career?

JFDI. There’s a misconception — one that extends beyond the tech space — that you can’t upskill yourself, or that you don’t need to, because the tech is all out there already. Yes, it’s advancing, but you need to develop an understanding to use and enhance it.

The next purchase on my personal tech wish list is…?

CDs — I’ve just (re)purchased a CD player. Vinyl is a brilliant format that has changed characteristically over time, but we never really got the same resurgence with CDs. I wanted to hear them again, and enjoy the process of putting something physical on a machine — that seems to be something emerging generations are interested in, too. It’s not about replacing new technology with the old stuff, but there’s nothing like unwrapping something physical.

I recently went back through my old CDs and found a Kasabian album, with a poster enclosed in the case. It was weird to see, because it’s all Spotify and screensavers these days. How times have changed!

And what is your earliest memory of tech in your life?

Building a radio using a radiator (yes, one of those!) as the antenna and a potato for a battery. 

What is one longstanding piece if tech you are shocked is still used today?

2G — over 2.4 million devices still rely on 2G or 3G, according to Ofcom. It’s set to retire completely over the next decade, but I can’t believe we’re still seeing such high figures of usage in 2024.

If you are without the internet for an hour, what would be the first activity you resort to, to pass the time?

Sleeping in my hammock. Or, if I wasn't getting shut-eye, I’d have a book in my hand.

In the second instalment of a three-fold series, ICT Channel partners united for The Big Goal’s Northern Regional Finals tournament last Friday. Vapour’s five-a-side team, captained by CEO Tim Mercer, took to Sunderland’s Beacon of Light for the occasion.

The event, sponsored by Foundation of Light, saw 10 teams go head-to-head for the winning title — including headline sponsor Giacom, ANS Group, Sky Business, Daisy Corporate Services, Firstcom Europe Ltd, PXC and Elite Group. 

Despite a gripping game against Giacom, Vapour missed the chance to compete in the knockout stage, where semi-finalists Daisy Corporate Services and Firstcom Europe Ltd., and finalists PXC and Elite Group, battled for glory. Ultimately, it was a ‘last gasp’ goal, leading to a dramatic 5-4 victory, that saw Elite Group reign as the champions.

PXC’s performance didn’t go unnoticed, however, as Darren McKnight took home the Golden Boot trophy, for scoring an incredible 20 goals on the day. Giacom’s Giacommanders also secured the Fair Play team award for their stellar performance.

“We were gutted to have not qualified, but all was not lost,” says Tim. “Supporting The Big Goal is about more than enjoying a kick about. Off the pitch, we’re helping to provide better opportunities for homeless and disadvantaged youth in the local community.

“Through the nationally acclaimed Street Soccer Academy programme, we’re sponsoring a local professional football club community organisation as part of the Autumn intake. Whether it’s sharing CV-writing tips and supporting employability skills or offering shadowing opportunities with our seasoned tech professionals, we're committed to equipping individuals with the tools and support they need to confidently step into brighter futures.”

The four qualifying teams from the Northern Regionals will be joined in the Nationals Finals later this year by Southern Regional winners Focus Group United, runners up Gamma (South), and semi-finalists Vorboss and InTEC 2. The top teams from the Midlands Regionals, yet to be determined, will complete the line-up for what promises to be an exhilarating showdown at the home of England Football, St George’s Park.

Tim concludes: “The organisation of the event has been exceptional from start to finish — a far cry from what you might expect from such a fledgling initiative. And if the regional tournaments are anything to go by, the final is set to be one for the memory books. You can bet we’ll be back to do it all again next year. Although, I realised football in your 50s hurts more than you remembered in your thirties, so it’s back to golf for the time being! ” 

Head to The Big Goal’s website to learn how you can get involved.

Against a challenging fiscal backdrop, the results of the Spring Budget dominated media headlines this month. Although, not necessarily for the right reasons, as an overarching lack of funds and direction across a number of sectors cast a shadow over the government’s 2024 strategy.

Yet, irrespective of these challenges, Vapour’s quarter one renewals paint a picture of strength and resilience — particularly in the education sector, where internet investments shine. Explore our recent activity snapshot, to see which services are the most in-demand right now…

With a sextuple of three-year internet services deals re-signed, the aftersales team has been busy supporting a number of primary and secondary schools with their digital learning strategies.

In the Calderdale borough, Bolton Brow Primary, Christ Church Sowerby Bridge Primary, and Calder High School sought Vapour’s continued support. Meanwhile, we’ve also partnered with Horbury St Peter's & Clifton CE (VC) Primary and Kettlethorpe High School in Wakefield and St Patrick's Catholic Voluntary Academy in Sheffield.

But it’s not just the education sector that’s tapping into our connectivity expertise. We’re also delighted to have seen renewals from the likes of Unipart rail, the UK’s leading railway product and technology specialist, as well as Stafford-based Dean’s Accountants. 

As the firm looks to boost the resilience of its software suite, renewing Veeam backup services with Vapour has proven to be the logical step for Crombie Wilkinson Solicitors. As a trusted partner of Veeam, we provide the assurance and expertise our customers require to navigate their digital environments with peace of mind, knowing that their data is in capable hands.

The continued trust placed in Vapour by long standing further speaks volumes about the quality and reliability of our toolkit. Ark-H Handling, one of our first-ever customers in 2013, has renewed its network connectivity, firewall, hosted server, and backup services for another 36 months. 

Committed to delivering exceptional solutions beyond our direct customers, we’re also proud to see Vapour partner Aeon Cloud Solutions renew Teams Voice for one of its customers, for another 24 months. This fully cloud-based solution won’t just curb call costs, but increase technical efficiencies and boost collaboration across the board.

Intrigued to learn more about the solutions explored here? Let’s talk. 

It’s no secret that the global tech sector is advancing at an astonishingly rapid pace – not least in relation to the now integral role of digital transformation in spearheading growth and success. But no matter the size or scope or your organisation – or how sophisticated your innovation strategy is – the only way to drive significant change is to leverage the power of people.

So, to champion some of the industry’s finest talent, and gain insight into the minds of individuals from across the tech space, we’re inviting friends and partners of the business to take part in our quickfire Q&A.

This month, Sharon Annat, data analyst at leading shredder manufacturer UNTHA UK, takes centre stage…

Tell us about your role at UNTHA UK and the part you play in the tech sector:

My role is all things data. With a powerful software engine, Microsoft Dynamics 365, bringing increasingly more agility and efficiency to our specialist shredding operations, it’s my job to make sense of the data behind it. By providing dashboards, reports, and visualisations, our department leads and directors can proactively monitor daily, monthly, and annual activity to make data-driven decisions. These actionable insights are a critical source for us to cleanse data, further streamline processes, and optimise performance. 

What innovation was the turning point for your organisation, to get it to where you are now?

In the first instance, the introduction of Dynamics 365 in 2016 — the platform that leveraged our digital transformation. We were ahead of our time for an organisation of our size, which saw us garner acclaim in Digital Enterprise’s Top 100 three years running, including special recognition as one of ten Leading Lights in 2022. Then, the integration of Power BI empowered us with increased structure and visibility to enhance business intelligence.

And where’s next for your business?

At UNTHA, we pride ourselves on continual improvement, and this applies to our digital platform too. Bringing our remaining segregated processes under the Dynamics umbrella will enable us to further develop and strengthen our data analysis through Power BI. 

Finish the sentence: The biggest misconception faced by the tech sector is…

There are a number. However, the industry is always changing.  In line with International Women’s Day, I’d say one is that tech roles are male dominated. While the statistics support this notion as a whole, there is a growing number of women in tech roles today — many in leadership positions, driving companies forward.  As a mum to a daughter embarking on her own career journey, these amazing role models are essential for the next generation of young women, who are just starting out and forging their path. 

What do you think will be the biggest tech trend over the next 12 months?

The development of the data-driven business is upon us. Organisations are realising the value in their business intelligence to propel their company forward securely and effectively.  

Of course, AI is likely to play a key role in the coming months and years. However, as a mature analyst, I hope we don’t eliminate the satisfaction we experience from manually developing data, and never overlook the results humans can achieve with the support of innovative tech.  Automation that aids what we do is a positive benefit, role replacement is not. 

What top tip would you give to an individual trying to excel in their tech career?

If you’re embarking on years of study, choose a topic as broad as you can to allow you to diversify. What suits you now, may not in the future, so it’s great to have the ability to dip into other areas of specialism or branch out. Once you’ve found your niche, learn as much as you can and stay up to date with developments.

And, if the role is data related, KNOW YOUR DATA. It’s imperative that you have an understanding of your organisation’s and/or customer’s data before embarking on any development work. You have to be able to identify any rogue raw intelligence that doesn't have a place in your analysis. It’s all in the prep!

The next purchase on your personal tech wish list is…?

I’m not a huge techie, although a new camera would be very nice. Outside of work, I love the simple things in life — the great outdoors and fresh air. I think it’s important we nurture that balance in our lives, not least in a world so focused on tech and ‘the next big thing’.

And what is the earliest memory you have of tech in your life?

I think it was an Amstrad GX400 video game console. It’s the one with the little green square, that you hit against a wall like a game of squash. I’m showing my age now!

What is one long standing piece of tech that you are shocked is still used today?

Crikey, fax machines. 

If you are without the internet for an hour, what would be the first activity you resort to, to pass the time?

I’d do what I do now, and read. The feel and smell of a physical book is something you can’t get from a digital version, and it’s an immersive experience that I love. I have a very well stocked bookshelf.

Want more where this came from? Read our Q&A with Richard May, CEO of virtualDCS.

Fusing the dynamism of the ICT Channel with the power of football, The Big Goal is a twofold initiative aimed at combating youth homelessness in the UK. And this year, Vapour is proud to pledge its support. Explore how we’re making a meaningful impact in the lives of disadvantaged youth across the country.

What is The Big Goal?

The Street Soccer Foundation – formed by multi-award-winning, nationally acclaimed entrepreneur and business leader, Keith Mabbutt – is the primary brain behind The Big Goal.

As the number one football-led project tackling youth homelessness in England, the charity works in partnership with various clubs across The Premier League and English Football League (EFL) club community organisations, aiming to equip people with the skills they need to prepare them for a brighter future.

The Big Goal is one piece of a wider puzzle. At its core, it’s an industry-led ambition – with Giacom as headline sponsor and Comms Dealer as media partner – marrying the world's most beloved sport with one of the UK's largest industry sectors to address a pressing social issue: youth homelessness. The ultimate goal? To take 1,600 young people off the street and into employment.

The initiative's dual components, the five-a-side tournament and The Street Soccer Academy, offer diverse avenues for companies like Vapour to get involved and support the cause.

Playing for change at the home of football

The five-a-side tournament aspect of The Big Goal unites ICT resellers for a spirited competition on the football pitch. With the final set to take place at the home of football, St George’s Park, in summer, it’s the opportunity of a lifetime for all channel partners involved.

Beyond the thrill of the game, each team's entry fee serves as a direct sponsorship of up to 10 young people enrolled in The Street Soccer Foundation's National Academy program. This won’t just serve as a platform for young players to learn skills and build confidence in a football-based environment, but to further opportunities long after the programme ends.

Taking young individuals from pitch to purpose 

Meanwhile, The Academy represents a deeper commitment to empowering young individuals experiencing or at risk of homelessness. Through a 10-week personal development training program, participants receive a blend of football coaching, mindset training, and soft skills workshops. 

Designed for individuals aged 18-30, The Academy aims to enhance physical health and mental wellbeing, as well as to instil confidence, self-belief, and practical skills essential for employment and independent living.

How Vapour is playing its part 

As a founding member and sponsor of The Big Goal, Vapour is fully engaged in both aspects of the initiative.

By fielding a five-a-side team in the national tournament, the firm not only competes for a cause but also directly contributes to the support and empowerment of young people through The Academy.

“Crucially, Vapour's involvement extends beyond the football pitch,” says CEO Tim Mercer. “I’m poised to share insights and expertise that don’t just cover the tech space but span essentials like how to excel in an interview and ways to safeguard business success during setup. 

“As a company, we’re also looking to offer work experience opportunities and mentorship to program participants, so we can offer a real avenue for growth later down the line. It’s not just a chance for Vapour to give back, though. Having welcomed a number of apprentices into the fold over the years, we know firsthand just how valuable fresh, emerging talent can be to our team.”

Keith Mabbutt, CEO and founder of the Street Soccer Foundation, added: “I am so excited about our new industry-wide initiative, The Big Goal, and to have Vapour on board as a Founding Member.

“It’s a true call to action across one of the largest sectors in the country and the way in which we are using football as the anchor to unite these brilliant organisations not only sees several of our academies become sponsored for the benefit of young people as well as local communities nationwide; but through the offered tournament element, it helps brings to life how by playing football, these wonderful companies can experience for themselves the power of playing for change.”

Tim will join the Northern team’s five-a-side regional line-up at Sunderland AFC’s Beacon of Light on 19 April, before The Big Goal’s second Academy intake reveals who will complete the Vapour pair in Autumn. 

Keen to help champion the cause? Discover how you can change lives through football.

Initially unveiled to rival OpenAI’s ChatGPT, Google Bard has been on a rapid growth trajectory since its launch in February 2023. And with brand-based transformations making headlines this month, it seems there’s only more competition and capabilities to come. Vapour CEO, Tim Mercer, unpicks the latest changelog and explores what’s to come for the generative AI model in 2024.

Hot on the heels of media speculation — spurred by noted app developer and occasional information leaker, Dylan Roussel, on X — Google officially announced Bard’s rebrand to Gemini this month. The new-look platform coordinates with its multi-modal AI model of the same name, which was rolled out in December last year, and claims to have broken ground by outperforming human experts on Massive Multitask Language Understanding (MMLU).

Why has Google Bard rebranded to Gemini?

Since its debut, Google’s AI tool has introduced a number of enhancements, including the ability to generate images from text. Now, in leveraging the name of the Large Language Model (LLM) powering the AI chatbot, the global giant looks to better reflect the advanced tech at its core, while curbing the confusion surrounding the growing number of AI-powered products in its portfolio. This includes, for example, Google’s Duet AI collaboration tools for Google Workspace.

What other changes will Gemini bring?

Beyond the name change, Google has evolved Gemini’s User Interface (UI) to reduce visual distractions, improve legibility, and simplify the navigation for consumers. The introduction of the gemini.google.com website domain marks a true ‘clean slate’ launch too. 

The chatbot will also launch Gemini Advanced, a paid version which utilises a more powerful generative AI model called Gemini Ultra, instead of Gemini Pro as standard. Rolling out in 150 countries to start, it’s set to be better at complex coding, logical reasoning, and creative collaboration queries. In the future, it will also grow its multi-modal capabilities, and be able to analyse more data simultaneously.

While core features of the standard plan remain intact, a new mobile app for Android will offer more streamlined access to Gemini for on-the-go queries too, as well as an option to replace Google Assistant. But with the former not yet capable of performing on-device tasks — despite its conversational slant and multi-modal capabilities — it’s unlikely to steal the march just yet.

A recent article from Computer World summarises the differences, stating that “the real problem with Gemini as the Android assistant is that Google's forgotten why a phone assistant actually matters — and what we, as actual users in the real world, need from such a service. Plain and simple, using Gemini in place of Google Assistant feels like having a square peg awkwardly forced into a round hole.”

Charting for growth in 2024 and beyond

Google isn’t the only AI titan to make such leaps, however. Competition is rife among Microsoft, Open AI, and several burgeoning AI startups right now too. It was only last month that Microsoft unveiled a slew of Copilot updates, including supercharged subscriptions with its Pro offering and the ability to create your own Copilot GPTs. Meanwhile, new embedding models and API updates are making their way to OpenAI’s ChatGPT.

Therefore, it comes as no surprise the generative AI market is projected to reach $1.3 trillion by 2032.

Keen to harness AI the right way? Let’s talk about our complementary technologies and how they can take your business to new heights in 2024.

Transformational cloud technology firm Vapour has agreed a deal with Leeds-headquartered virtualDCS, to move its entire Veeam estate and hosting platform over to the channel specialist’s infrastructure.

All Vapour’s hosted servers and backups will be migrated over to the virtualDCS environment in a three-phased programme of work that will span the next six months.

Although technology agnostic, Vapour has frequently recommended Veeam solutions to clients as the business has grown over the last 10 years. But as the scope and scale of customer requirements continues to advance, Vapour wanted to supercharge its data protection strategy.

Collaborating with virtualDCS – a Veeam platinum partner and 2023 Veeam innovation Award winner  – will bolster Vapour’s ability to deliver greater resilience, technical support, and agile cloud growth for the market.

Elaborating on the partnership, Vapour’s CEO Tim Mercer explained: “As we continually expand our cloud portfolio, we’re always looking for ways to provide additional layers of availability and security.

With access to virtualDCS’s multiple UK data centres we could now spin up an unlimited number of servers with ease, safe in the knowledge we don’t just have access to more hardware – we’ll benefit from the latest software releases too. The collaboration provides us with the most cost-efficient and energy savvy scalability strategy, for Vapour and customers alike.

“People familiar with the Vapour brand know we love solving technology challenges too. virtualDCS’s engineers will now act as an extension of our own team, meaning we can now offer real depth to our pre-sales support. And that’s before we think about the new services we’ll be able to offer when this initial six month project is complete.”

Jason Newell, channel director at virtualDCS added: "This is a fantastic partnership and mutual opportunity for virtualDCS, Vapour Cloud and their customers. By working together, we can deliver a range of comprehensive disaster recovery and Infrastructure services, which not only meet but exceed customer expectations.

The new partnership forges a resilient and customer-centric approach to business continuity and with virtualDCS now acting as an extension to Vapour’s technical team, their customers can benefit from world-leading Veeam services and data protection experts." 

With its HQ in Huddersfield, but colleagues across the country in Glasgow, Sunderland, Manchester and London, Vapour provides the hidden technology behind powerful business.

Industrial shredding specialist UNTHA UK is no stranger to Vapour’s cloud toolkit, having long been a user of the TeamsLink solution for savvy Microsoft communication. But impressed with the quality of the collaboration to date, the growing business has returned to Vapour once again, to further strengthen its Microsoft estate.

The engineering firm has been independently recognised for its progressive use of technology, having been hailed as a ‘leading light’ in the Digital Enterprise Top 100 hit list for 2022. And UNTHA UK’s pioneering use of Microsoft Dynamics functionality throughout its entire business, is one of the main reasons for this prestigious accolade.

Because their existing Microsoft partner could no longer provide the organisation’s licences, UNTHA UK turned to Vapour for alternative provision. But instead of simply supplying the licences ‘as is’, the Vapour team conducted a thorough audit and optimisation exercise, ensuring the licence types were fit for purpose for individual colleagues’ existing and future requirements. Not only does this align to the collaboration and productivity goals of the growing business, but it helps protect UNTHA UK’s budget too. There was an evaluation of the current licences base being used and changed in line with the UNTHA UK business strategy.

Vapour’s senior sales support James Wood explains: “We’re very transparent, as a business, about our approach to providing the best possible service to customers. We openly call on the expertise of our partner network where required, and the UNTHA UK project represented a fantastic opportunity to bring in our peers at CloudCoCo for the licensing support. The relationship still sits with Vapour, so UNTHA UK has a single point of contact, but the customer benefits from the involvement of true specialists in their respective fields. This is when things start to get very exciting.”

With a visionary roadmap of upcoming activity still to unfold, conversations are now ongoing regarding UNTHA UK’s even more progressive use of Microsoft Dynamics moving forward, with key considerations around backup and automation already underway. 

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