A robust and secure IT and telecoms platform, the key to ‘Intelligent Inspiration’


A robust and secure IT and telecoms platform, the key to ‘Intelligent Inspiration’

Case study: Influential - A robust and secure IT and telecoms platform, the key to ‘Intelligent Inspiration’

About the project

Influential has chosen to partner with The PC Support Group for more than a decade, establishing a robust, flexible, secure, and cost-effective IT and telecoms platform, with services and solutions constantly evolving to meet Influential’s changing business requirements. These firm foundations and ongoing strategic advice enable its creative and account teams to collaborate, innovate and deliver award-winning communications campaigns that deliver impact and measurable results.

The benefits

Adoption of Microsoft SharePoint has boosted productivity, empowering Influential’s teams to collaborate and innovate, and opened up new income streams such as video production
Cyber Essentials certification has opened up tender opportunities and enhanced supplier relationships by demonstrating data security best practice and controls
Proactive, ongoing assessment of IT and telecoms needs ensures access to the latest features and functionality, and optimised performance
Employees are more productive and have less downtime due to having access to expert support and advice, and fast resolution of issues
Smooth, streamlined IT systems and processes enable Influential’s management team to deliver real time project status reports, accurate, timely invoicing, and business planning
A business partnership built on trust and confidence, enabling Influential’s senior management team to know it always gets the best advice, services, and implementation to maximise the value and performance of its IT and telecoms
New leased line deal delivers 100% high speed connectivity, a 35% cost reduction, and cumulative savings of more than £6,000
A key strategic business acquisition and office move were executed seamlessly, ensuring business as usual for clients.

The client

Influential is an award-winning, full-service marketing communications consultancy with offices in Manchester and Liverpool. Its client list features diverse public, private and third sector organisations throughout the UK, ranging from the NHS and University of Liverpool to Grant Thornton, Camelot, Radisson, Everton Football Club and Madame Tussauds.

Its work - on brands, marketing strategy, public relations, and digital communications - is anchored in detailed market research and data analysis. This essential groundwork helps unlock the priceless insights that ensure that its marketing strategies are sound and its campaigns creative and engaging, delivering impact and measurable results. Influential calls this approach ‘Intelligent Inspiration’.


“Our technology not only needs to be fully functioning at all times; it needs to help drive our business forward to enable us to deliver evermore innovative, high-value, high-quality services for our clients. The PC Support Group delivers all this and more. They are our virtual CIO, acting as a valued advisor and partner, enabling our people to do their best work, while also looking forward, ensuring that we have the best solutions on the best commercial terms. Their people are friendly, super helpful and always go the extra mile.”

Sara Wilde, Managing Director, Influential

The challenge

In the fast-moving, ultra-competitive world of marketing communications, speed of response and an ability to build and nurture rapport and collaborative relationships with clients are key building blocks of success.

To achieve this, Influential needs its IT and telecoms to be robust and reliable, providing an agile technology platform for its people to work flexibly, productively, and securely, whether in the office, on the move or at clients’ premises. It’s vital that they have seamless access to data, documents, and digital media, as well as colleagues and clients, from workstations, laptops, and mobile devices.

Clients rely on Influential’s expertise to develop creative campaigns at the cutting edge of today’s digital communications capabilities. It’s therefore essential that the company’s IT infrastructure can both empower its creative teams and provide the connectivity and bandwidth to handle the execution of large-scale campaigns too.

And with demonstrable data security now an essential pre-requisite for all of Influential’s clients and new business prospects, the company must have proven, best practice cybersecurity protocols in place. Crucially Influential’s IT and telecoms must be a business asset, not a burden, enabling the business to grow and expand at pace and ease, taking advantage of opportunities and staying ahead of the competition, while keeping IT capital and operating costs as low as possible.

The imperative for speed and flexibility was brought into sharp focus during COVID-19 when the company needed to switch overnight to home and hybrid working, and later when it acquired creative business, Young Bright and Grey, in 2021, when it moved offices in Liverpool, and expanded its team with a range of key appointments.

The solution

The key to the successful partnership between The PC Support Group and Influential over a number of years is proactive account management. Regular communication and reviews ensure that the IT systems and infrastructure continue to be fit for purpose and cost effective, whilst new threats and opportunities are pre-emptively managed. As Influential has risen to prominence in the North West and beyond, it continues to evolve, and through these regular reviews PCSG ensures that the technology, systems, and related service have evolved with them.

At the core of the service is a range of market-leading managed service plans that combine the latest in cyber-security systems, sophisticated monitoring, pro-active management, and a support team of highly trained and friendly engineers and consultants, always on hand to resolve issues and provide in person advice. This combination of pro-active and re-active services keep Influential’s teams fully-functioning, connected and productive, in each of its three offices and when working remotely.

As the global pandemic struck in 2020, The PC Support Group’s detailed understanding of Influential’s IT ecosystem and business needs enabled it to engineer a seamless move to remote working, enabling Influential’s creative teams to continue delivering projects and its account teams to support clients who were also wrestling with new working arrangements.

The PC Support Group also recommended and managed a move from an in-house server to the stable, secure, and controllable SharePoint Cloud filesharing environment. Not only did this improve remote and collaborative working but it also enabled a newly acquired business to be merged more easily. PCSG’s project team worked closely with Influential staff to assess and categorise documents and smoothly migrate the data whilst maintaining ‘business as usual’ operations.

To improve Influential’s data security stance The PC Support Group instigated additional security measures such as improved anti-phishing detection and managed the process of Cyber Essentials certification, the Government programme that promotes cybersecurity awareness and secure working practices.

In addition to future proofing Influential and maximising the use of technology, The PC Support Group always looks for opportunities to deliver further cost savings for clients. Regular reviews identified an opportunity to move to a new, high speed leased line and business internet connectivity deal, securing 100% guaranteed uptime, increased bandwidth, and lower monthly costs.


“The PC Support Group has been our IT support partner of choice for over a decade and their approach to data protection and cyber security is second to none. As cyber-criminals adapt and change their approach, The PC Support Group proactively advises us and keeps us ahead of the curve by introducing innovative technology and processes. Implementing the Government-backed Cyber Essentials process with The PC Support Group has been central to that.” 
Mark Whittle, Finance Manager, Influential

The results

Its partnership with The PC Support Group frees Influential and its teams to devote their time to delivering great work – and great results – for their clients, enhancing their reputation for excellence, increasing productivity and profitability, and fuelling business growth.

Thanks to sound decision making and constant monitoring and maintenance, the company enjoys the peace of mind that its IT and telecoms are functioning efficiently and cost effectively, empowering its people to be agile and productive, accessing the latest tools and technology.

And when they need assistance, The PC Support Group’s team of engineers are on hand to resolve issues and provide advice and guidance. Commercially valuable company and client data and documents are protected through a range of cyber-security systems and managed backups, ensuring business continuity and peace of mind.

The migration to SharePoint Cloud has improved productivity for Influential by ensuring that its teams always have instant, secure and controlled access to live documents, wherever they are, enabling collaborative working with colleagues and clients and ensuring that everyone is accessing the latest version and using it with confidence.

And by moving to a new leased business line, Influential has a dedicated, always on, fixed bandwidth internet connection, guaranteeing high upload and download speeds for all business and technology requirements across all its offices. This upgrade removed connectivity issues and improved the performance of Influential’s online systems. Bandwidth security has also enabled Influential to increase the scope and scale of its video production activities, a key growth area for the business.

The PC Support Group identified the most attractive and commercially competitive leased line deal to meet Influential’s requirements and managed all aspects of the installation; it was completed over a weekend with no interruption to business. The new arrangement has reduced leased line costs by 35% and delivered cumulative savings of more than £6,000.

Certification on the UK Government’s Cyber Essentials programme is not just a demonstration of Influential’s commitment to data security. It has also driven awareness of risk and how these can be mitigated by the adoption of secure business processes and safe day-to-day working practices. It builds trust and confidence amongst business partners and ensures that Influential meets important cybersecurity criteria, both for existing clients and in responding to new business tenders.

According to UK Government research, Cyber Essentials certification improves protection against 80% of the most common cyberattacks.

And with The PC Support Group overseeing all IT requirements, Influential took the acquisition of creative business Young Bright and Grey, and a move to a new office in Liverpool, in its stride, ensuring business as usual for its teams and clients alike.

Sara Wilde, MD of Influential wearing a black jacket and elaborate green necklace
"The move to a new leased business line arrangement is a great example of the proactive work that The PC Support Group does on our behalf behind the scenes. They came to us six months before the end of our existing deal with a recommendation of where to go next and what the business and cost benefits would be. We now have a 100% connectivity guarantee, while cutting costs by 35% and saving more than £6,000”
Sara Wilde, Managing Director, Influential