Find out what it’s like to have Meriplex as your cloud, intelligent WAN, cybersecurity, and managed service provider in the healthcare industry.
When you have your own internal IT team that only works with your environment, all they get to know and see is your environment. It’s been a huge benefit having Meriplex on board, because they’ve already gone through the executing implementations out of the gate and the lessons learned from those.
Prior to Meriplex, we experienced outages for a variety of reasons, but the impact to the company was significant, based on network design and certain limitations to servers and infrastructure design and understanding. We were a totally flat network, so anything that happened to our Golden office where our servers were on-prem shut down the rest of the company as well. We also had performance issues, because our only outbound internet was routed through our main facility. Therefore, each facility didn’t have its own access to the Internet, so again if anything happened, our entire company was down. With Meriplex coming on board that was one of the first gaps that we addressed. We put in a redundant MPLS network across all sites; each site now has its own internet access completely. We migrated our servers from an on-prem solution to a data center that has the backups and the systems to run a larger infrastructure like ours. It also gave us the flexibility that if we do have a power outage in one of our facilities, or if something else outside of our control happens at any of our facilities, that facility is isolated without impacting the rest of the company. The other thing that the network design did for us, in segmenting the network correctly, was allow our support teams the ability to diagnose and troubleshoot problems faster. It’s been a beneficial relationship for us thus far, and we’ll see where it continues to move. Where Meriplex has also helped us is in providing virtual CIO services, so it really helps us source solutions better.
The quarterly reviews that we do also help us line up the strategic IT plan with the business plan. We don’t need to shuffle priorities, we don’t need to move things in different directions, but if we do, we’re all agreeing to it and we’re moving as a single solitary unit, which has been great. Meriplex has really been embedded into our culture. For an IT company that is an outside, outsourced organization, you can’t expect anything better. The bulk of our IT support is actually done remotely. Being able to contact an IT person over the phone is easy, and having a help desk queue just answer it, whether they’re here in front of you working, you know you’re sharing resources. This makes response times go down, and their ability to troubleshoot the systems is the same as if they were onsite. If they just want to make a regular phone call, they can do that. They can get the information they need from the end user while still making the end user feel as if they are being heard. That’s one of the gaps that I think a lot of people have as an area of concern. How do you provide support remotely, but still make sure your teams and staff feel like they are truly being cared for? With Meriplex and the way they handle remote support, we haven’t had those problems.
Mike’s involvement was the difference for us, in that we had a principle of the organization involved, not only on the front end during the sales process so to speak, but also during the actual operation, as well as coming up with the final report and delivery of the final report. It was having his dedicated involvement throughout the process that really made the process work more effectively for us.
In the situation that we were in, it was more of a defined engagement where it was an assessment process, and having a remote vendor in for that isn’t as big of an issue or concern as it is if they were going to be the ongoing operator of the IT infrastructure. And in that regard, in terms of having a remote service provider, I know when I’ve talked to Mike, Meriplex is always happy to put a person on the ground if that’s what’s needed in order to do those things that have to be done in person or provide the comfort that comes with having somebody physically located within the setting.
Again, having somebody really overseeing and shepherding the process through was key, and making sure that everything was delivered to our satisfaction. With Meriplex, there was always one person to go to if there were any kind of issues, questions, or anything else we needed.
We have always had internal IT, through a local company in Colorado Springs. We still utilize them for our IT needs; however, we got involved with Meriplex for our security risk analysis that is required for MIPS, Macro, as well as others each year. So, that is how we started with Meriplex, last year we did our first assessments, and it went really well.
We are in our second year starting our analysis, round two with Meriplex. They were able to point out some things that we could improve upon and helped us get better processes in place. Some of our big things were our servers and our backup, so we did have to make some changes internally based on their suggestions. We do house all of our IT internally, so we did have to make some adjustments to our servers, what all was stored on each server, just to be more compliant based on their recommendations and have a more secure platform.
There are really two reasons why Meriplex was the first call on my list in terms of talking about security and managed services. One is, you always want to have an outside vendor do your SRA’s and penetration testing, so it was a natural fit to get a sense of how working with our IT would be, and it was a natural first step because they could evaluate our systems and our services very objectively without any concern there.
During the time that we were planning the SRA to get the schedules set up with plans, we started to have some service issues with our current managed IT services company. Nothing major but enough to start to make me a little bit curious about what other companies are out there that do managed IT.
The experience of the SRA and Pen test has been extremely positive. The team comes in, they do a professional job, and they do a great job of giving you very human feedback on what they see. You can tell that the team is very competent in the areas that they are focused on. I appreciate that the Meriplex team was very good at talking to me about how I wanted that data to be presented. The interesting thing is when we went into the idea of the security risk assessment and Pen test, it seems like sometimes people ask for this to be done and they don’t really want to know what the problems are and I’m the exact opposite. I’d rather know all the skeletons in the closet so that we can fix them.
It was great to work with them, and at the end of the risk assessment what I liked is that we sat down and had a good meeting about if there was something that was absolutely a risk that day, and they would work through that with us. Then they put everything into categories, high and low priority, and provide us with a very detailed analysis, which we’re going to work through together.
Before Meriplex, we were examining our expansion and our needs, and we kept our servers on-site. With Meriplex, we were able to put our servers in the cloud or in a data center, and that eliminated a lot of cost with scaling up. In addition, we needed help with our risk assessments and Meriplex was critical in providing those assessments and helping us with cybersecurity. It was extremely affordable, so it was high value, which when we were trying to look at putting our data in a cloud, it can be quite expensive especially working at terabytes of imaging data. Again, that was a very cost-effective solution putting it into a Meriplex data center.
Meriplex helped with our physicians workflow, and Reliable was very easy to adapt to the physician demand, which was great. Physicians felt very little impact on their clinic when we transitioned over. At times, they didn’t even know we did it, so that was great. It was a smooth transition. We appreciated the staff and the expertise when going through that transition as well. Because it took a lot of senior executives, having that breadth of knowledge in healthcare.
Particularly around information technology, you’re always going to have issues, challenges come up, and problems, and Meriplex was always there with a quick response, which is critical to a practice that sees patients. And basically serves the population on a 24/7 basis.
On the remote side, because of our weekly meetings (now our monthly meetings, it was weekly when we were going through the transition), having those virtual meetings was invaluable and we were able to go over every ticket. That was great from an executive point of view to have the high level understanding of the frequent issues, the mission-critical ones, and then prioritizing them, so that was very good. Many times, 90% of the work I did not realize was being done was happening remotely. There’s always somebody looking at the system and making sure it’s working right, which is great.
Before Meriplex, we had outsourced all of our data center and network administration to a third party company. However, they were not cutting it. We had frequent outages; we had problems with our Citrix environment that they just simply could not fix for us. It was just causing massive outages throughout our entire clinic. Therefore, we didn’t really have anybody that we knew that we could rely on to fix the problems that we had.
Prior to Meriplex we were just down a lot. So, being down obviously costs a lot of money as an organization. In addition, our staff was so very frustrated with IT that they didn’t even call when they went down because they knew that we could not do anything to fix it.
We ultimately brought Meriplex in and they looked at it and said, well we don’t really know what the problem is either, but we don’t want to roll that problem forward. Therefore, we just replaced everything when they came in. That has completely transformed our entire environment where we have very little downtime. We know we can always call Meriplex; they have experts in all the areas that we need, and we can call them any time we have any problems.
I met Mike through the OrthoForum. I talked to him and some of his co-workers and determined the best way to move forward. They did a security risk assessment on our organization to find some of the areas where we knew we were having problems. Then, they were the first people that we thought of because of the relationship we had already built with them when we realized our previous company was not cutting it.
We’ve had no issues; they’re very responsive, they’ve got people that wake up very early to check on things ahead of time, and they’re responsive very quickly via phone or email to us, that we’ve had no issues with them being remote. I think that technology has changed over the last ten years or so and has become very subspecialized, where people have to know the specific thing they are working on. We like the idea of bringing in somebody who has all these people with specialized knowledge. We think that’s really important to move forward as we learn about all the phishing and cybersecurity issues, etc. We need somebody who really does that every day, not occasionally. That is what we feel like we get from Meriplex.
About three or four years ago, we were a much smaller company, but we were growing rapidly. The IT company that we were formerly with just couldn’t keep up with all of our demands. We were starting to grow into multiple locations, and it was a smaller company that was based out of Denver and they just couldn’t cover all of our needs, not only in our Colorado offices, but our other offices across the nation.
It’s tough to judge. just because we’ve grown so much, but I would say on a per person basis it’s about the same if not more cost-effective for us to be with Meriplex. We’ve implemented some new software programs that have helped our company grow and expand and be able to communicate across all of our different locations. We have offices and clinics in Des Moines, Kansas City, and Las Vegas, and Meriplex provides the IT needs for those offices and clinics, and does a great job doing it remotely.
Definitely do your due diligence beforehand, get some referrals from past clients; we did that with Meriplex. The clients that they had were very pleased with them, and so that’s why we ended up moving forward with Meriplex. At the time, our COO knew Lance, and they had a mutual connection and some past business relationships together. Therefore, that was the initial introduction and then we met with them and we vetted a few other companies and we ultimately decided that Meriplex was the best option for our needs and for the price.
Meriplex met very tight deadlines for our annual IT risk assessment due to their quick response time and dedication to our company. Their knowledge of IT for physician practices is vast which allows them to provide best practices to all of their clients.
Meriplex gave us a third-party perspective on how our IT was performing with regards to protections of our systems and overall IT performance. They were able to validate our current processes and gave us ideas and tools to implement to increase the security of our IT platform. They are very intentional about meeting your needs and do not believe in the one size fits all approach. Meriplex is comprised of more than IT. The team encompasses operational and EHR expertise, which is unmatched in any other firm I’ve worked with. They consistently take the time to meet with us, assess our needs, and then create an analysis that is extremely thorough and beneficial in assessing current processes and identifying gaps. They have the ability to look at the entire picture of the practice instead of a narrow scope, which is extremely valuable.
Meriplex exceeds the competition in documentation, and they are thorough and meticulous in their implementation and service delivery. Meriplex maintains the highest standard in quality. I can always rest assured that the very “top talent” will be managing my projects.
When our servers go down, Meriplex is immediately engaged in fixing the problem. They are quick to respond, and the help desk assistance is efficient in connecting us with the right person. We have been extremely pleased with their reliability whenever we are needing help.
Meriplex has a very comprehensive team of individuals who take you through the process. They have been extremely patient with us in exploring options regarding our Security Risk Assessment, as well as an overall evaluation of our current IT situation. They are readily available to answer questions and address concerns. They are not your typical IT because they listen, and they are genuinely invested in their clients. The team has various backgrounds in IT, operations management, etc. so they understand the different aspects of our organization and can explain the processes in a relatable way to our management team and staff.
The assessment Meriplex presented was great for our organization as it allowed me to analyze my current IT in a real way. It also gave me a contact for an IT firm that was able to handle our volume. The initial assessment was extremely detailed, thorough, and gave me confidence that nothing was missed. I feel confident in recommending Meriplex because they consistently give me a complete IT picture.
Meriplex understands the workflow of a medical office and the needs of our staff and practitioners. Meriplex helps me stay on top of constant changes in the healthcare industry and gives me the tools I need to help our company succeed. Meriplex “IS” health care. They offer up to the minute education on topics such as risks, security, and advancements, and consistently aim to demonstrate quality and distinction in the industry to benefit their customers.
Since our expertise is not in IT, we have experienced situations with other less professional IT providers who have either failed to take us seriously or tried to “over solve” our problems. I appreciate that Meriplex employees communicate with us, treat our staff as real customers, and take our concerns seriously. It is incredibly important that we receive reliable, actionable advice and service, and Meriplex has been infallible in their delivery every time. I would confidently recommend Meriplex to any company seeking an IT provider. Choosing Meriplex is a no-brainer!
We found Meriplex to be very comprehensive, as indicated by the extensive survey and assessment, followed by the report they provided us. They were very professional and knowledgeable. Not only did they make us cognizant of various security risks, but they were able to provide effective remediation techniques and advice that fit our needs.
I feel the “personal” relationships built in the very beginning stages have helped me/us feel comfortable with the move and the changes along the way. I know that when I have a question or urgent issue it will be addressed immediately, or I will be notified as to when it will be resolved. No change is without hiccups, but this has been one of the smoothest transitions I have been through. RIT is responsive and engaged with our team. I have worked with several IT firms with mixed results. RIT has taken the time to learn our infrastructure and to engage with our employees, so we feel like they are part of our team rather than just a vendor. The level of support we have received has been phenomenal making the transition as smooth as possible. “You won’t regret partnering with Meriplex.”
Meriplex is patient, understanding, and dedicated to finding solutions that allow us to focus on our business. It is well worth the investment to know that we have specialists who can resolve our issues quickly and professionally. I don’t have to worry about IT issues that might take significant time away from my core business because I know Meriplex will take care of it.
Meriplex provides prompt, reliable, and honest service that is consistently delivered in a timely manner and by a talented resource team. They offer a menu of options that a client can choose from, while helping the client understand the scope of the options presented. They address the clients’ needs and do not hard sell or up sell, which I appreciate in an IT company.
Are you ready to experience the Meriplex difference and grow your business capabilities with our industry leading healthcare IT solutions? Reach out today to schedule your appointment and discuss how we can help you improve your operations.