Cygnet + Kaine Mathrick Tech: A true partnership removing the 'noise' around IT
Cygnet Accountants needed an IT partner they could rely on. A partner that could confidently modernise their IT infrastructure and remove the burden of IT from the business owners.
“Before KMT, IT was problematic. You know when IT is not working properly because staff get naggy about it. Our IT now runs smoothly. Staff arrive to work for the day and it just works. We now have no IT issues. ”
“The Strategic Business Review process now occurs periodically with our Account Manager and Bradley Kaine. This looks at our business goals, our current IT infrastructure and provides a proactive roadmap that reviews licencing agreements, infrastructure efficiencies and identification of cost savings that can be made.”
Technology Services Used
Accounting & Financial Planning
Hours a month
With deep roots in the southern states of Australia, Cygnet has two offices located in Melbourne and Hobart. They offer accounting and financial planning and recently merged the two businesses as one.
For the past 6 years, Cygnet has been helping Australian businesses build strong, secure financial futures to meet their commercial and lifestyle goals. The company and its principals are backed by decades of experience and personal care, and much like our team at KMT, they provide practical advice and solutions to free their clients to focus on the decisions that matter most.
“We no longer experience negativity around IT, and this has an impact not only on how efficient our team is but also their attitude towards their job. When IT does not work, all you hear is nagging, but when it does, you don’t hear a thing.” Jeremy continued.
Technology has become critical for business survival. In today’s world, technology is advancing at a rapid pace leaving most SME businesses behind and confused. Cygnet Accounting’s Leadership were being distracted by the noise around their IT and felt their time would be better spent focusing on running their business not researching new technology solutions.
Like most SME businesses, the leadership at Cygnet Accounting found keeping up with the latest trends in IT hard to keep up, and rather than investing the time in researching long term technical solutions that would help them achieve their business goals, they resorted to temporary solutions.
Jeremy Swan, Cygnets Director of Accounting had a clear vision of how to evolve the company to what it is today and have the ability to scale and service more customers. However, to do this, they needed to address their technology as it was the one thing that was holding them back.
As a result, there were different systems and outdated applications were used depending on the business unit, which ultimately was creating inefficiencies in their ability to work remotely, communicate effectively between teams and clients and did not enable them to operate as a Modern Workplace.
Cygnet needed a solution, their Directors were managing the IT, including all IT support for their staff. It was taking many hours a week, which became a distraction and time spent away from being able to service their clients. The team knew they needed to improve their IT systems and processes and they made a decision to outsource their technology to a quality MSP partner. As a result, this would free up the Cygnet team to work on their business.
Kaine Mathrick Tech was engaged and the noise around the IT stopped.
Jeremy comments “We literally went from dealing with all sorts of annoying IT issues to dealing with none. Issues are stopped before they become a problem. As a result, we have gained valuable days in the month back to be able to focus on the business. For a business like ours – time is money”
In the beginning, Cygnet Accounting required an MSP to take over the daily IT support, backups of their systems and proactively maintain their infrastructure. KMT’s Managed IT Support did just that.
The managed IT services meant that the management of users, IT systems, IT policies and procedures were taken care of. In addition, the onboarding and offboarding of staff is managed by the team meaning Cygnet no longer has to worry about the status of any of these issues.
As part of the onboarding process, KMT takes a good look ‘under the hood’ to understand more about the business and their current IT environment. It is at this stage that a strategic roadmap and solution is developed to help clients improve the efficiencies of their technology and streamline any licencing, servers or infrastructure. During this stage, it was identified that Cygnet had some inefficiencies in their infrastructure and a migration to Microsoft 365 was recommended.
Microsoft 365 Tenancy Consolidation
In 2019 Cygnet made the decision to merge their Financial Planning and Accounting business under the one banner. They undertook a rebrand process however, their IT infrastructure still operated on different platforms.
Within a short period of time after onboarding, KMT identified that some of the team was still using Gmail which is inefficient and not secure. They then made the proactive recommendation that Cygnet migrate to Office 365.
The decision was made to migrate the businesses to Office 365 tenancy which provided a more robust platform that provided a secure collaboration experience which enabled their teams to adapt to the new modern workplace requiring flexibility around working from anywhere.
Part of KMT’s appeal came from its experience with many migration projects. They were experts in ensuring that the project as meticulously planned and managed ultimately making sure there was no downtime for staff and the data and emails were protected.
Proactive Remote Monitoring + patching
Cygnet was acutely aware that their antivirus, patches and backups were inconsistent across computers and often not compliant with best practices. The maintenance of hardware and software was ad-hoc and overdue.
KMT’s Managed IT Service took care of this and business applications are current, backups are regular and properly managed, and maintenance and patching of software and applications is up to date.
An Office Move
Aside from the infrastructure upgrade that occured and the improvements in proactive monitoring and maintenance, Cygnet Accounting moved offices.
KMT Project Management services provided the technology support they needed during the move process. For Cygnet, the move was a large undertaking.
Many things needed organization. Servers and hardware had to be moved and new hardware had to be ordered. The outcome of the project was no downtime for staff and KMT managed the entire project from start to finish. Cygnet did not have to worry about a thing. Everything ran smoothly.
With any office move, there are many moving parts and the projects team at KMT owned the technology aspect. “The one thing we knew was that we would not have to worry about IT. We had complete confidence that KMT would get it right and they did” Jeremy comments.
Jeremy said “There was so much to organise during the relocation process, from finding a location, negotiating leases, purchasing desks and office fit-out. It was a big project for us. But we knew we wouldn’t have to worry about anything related to the IT as we were confident that KMT had everything in hand.”
Cygnet was looking for a partner and not just a service provider. From the first meeting, Cygnet understood that KMT would deliver the right solutions and great service. However, they also believed they could trust them with their honesty and open style of communication.
“We were looking for a partner we could trust, someone that we had confidence in they would not only deliver the right IT solutions but that we could work with,” Jeremy says.
“We liked them in the first meeting. We were confident they would deliver the right IT solutions, but we wanted to know we could work with them as our IT partner and trust them to do the right thing. From the beginning we liked what they were saying, they were upfront, honest and didn’t speak all geek talk to us. We felt KMT was a good fit.”
The entire team at Cygnet enjoys working with KMT. “They explain complex IT issues in plain language and explain what is needed for the business. The staff makes it particularly easy for the IT-challenged.”
Outsourcing our IT meant choosing the right people with the right experience
For Cygnet, what differentiated KMT from others was the people. They believed them to have made a huge difference. “There is an expectation that KMT understands technology – it’s a given that KMT will get the IT right. They are very capable as an IT partner. But it is the way the staff manage our issues,” said Jeremy. “Communication keeping us abreast of the progress of issue resolution, the regular account meetings and the personal approach of the team is what sets them apart.”
The structure of the team is a dedicated Account Manager. The Account Manager meets with the business monthly to catch up on any issues and every quarter a Quarterly Strategic Review is held to discuss metrics, performance and an IT roadmap moving forward. This process ensures alignment and creates a shared vision, providing clarity for the business and confidence their technology is growing with them.
For day-to-day technology issues, there is a Customer Experience Manager and a Customer Service Officer that triages all IT support inquiries for Cygnet making sure they are directed to the right IT support technician so the issue is resolved fast and with the right outcome.
Cygnet feels the conversations are easy, they are always able to get in touch with their Account Manager any time who works closely with the business to ensure their requirements are met. “This is what sets KMT apart” Cygnet representative comments. “We have easy conversations with the right people at the right time and we know that our issues will be actioned and resolved quickly. We are confident that all issues will be resolved within a reasonable time frame.” he said.
He went on to mention three words that describe the value proposition of KMT, “Approachable”, “Down to Earth” and “Efficient.”
“I call my Account manager for all of my larger account issues and have faith that he will get things done. My Account Manager is my Central point of contact for strategic, account or advice issues – rather than going to IT support which are really there to support our day to day IT technical issues,” Jeremy said.
So what impact has outsourcing IT made?
Today, Cygnet functions with confidence that their IT system is running smoothly in safe hands. They are confident leaving KMT to manage all things IT and are focused towards their core competencies – accounting and financial planning and growing their business.
Jeremy believes that KMT has provided tremendous value in terms of “silencing the noise around IT”. We believe it has saved us over 10 hours a month.
“KMT’s Communication is proactive, informative and clear. If there are changes to anything related to my account, it is dealt with well in advance and I feel like they really are a true partner.”
Our IT solutions are business-centric
We will do what’s right for your businesses. Just like technology, our teams are constantly innovating, looking for better, more efficient ways of doing things using the best technology solutions to enable your business to operate the way it needs to, and more importantly investing in solutions that give you longevity. Quick fixes are not our thing.