Happy birthday to us! virtualDCS celebrates 10 years of cloud innovation

virtualDCS will be celebrating in style on the 1st September, looking back at a decade of success in the Cloud.

A blog by Richard May, Managing Director.

The Cloud was born here in Leeds. In 2005 the virtualDCS team, working at the ICM Computer Group, built the first ever VMware cloud platform. We also signed the first ever UK lead initiative to provide rented VMware resources. This model is now the cloud as we know it today.

happy birthday virtualDCS - cloud computing expertsAfter many Coffee shop meetings after work, we decided to create virtualDCS and focus on this new IT explosion. Today, we’re still acting as catalysts for change within the industry, with benchmarks such as being the ‘first VMware Service Provider Enterprise partner’ to being one of the largest Veeam Cloud Connect providers in Europe.

Our UK hosted cloud platform now spans multiple sites and is arguably the most mature UK owned cloud platform in the country. This is another accolade we are very proud of.   

With many of our first employees still at the company, our recruitment approach of employing apprentices has been great for us. 10 years and we still have every single one of them. This is why we see our company as a shining example of how the Apprentice Scheme can help people reach their full potential.

Looking toward the future

Now we’ve hit this milestone, we’re not planning on sitting back with our feet up. We’ve just welcomed Colin Meakin as a new non-executive director into the team. We’ve also expanded our support department and are currently recruiting for new business development managers and administrative assistants.

We’ve also just recertified our ISO 27001 status and are working hand in hand with Veeam to launch a new service that the industry hasn’t seen before.

So, how do we do it all, you ask? Looking back it’s safe to say we owe a lot of our success to our fantastic employees. Our strong business values also play a part.

What are our values?

If you split virtualDCS in half like a stick of rock, these values would be right down the middle:

Be dependable – to do what we say we will when we say we will.

To be consistently innovative – We’re always looking to improve, both in business and technology.

Be easy to do business with – Any action that we take makes our customer’s lives easier.

To be an awesome place to work – We want our employees to enjoy coming to work and our customers excited to visit us.

10 years on we’ve still got our first ever customer, and yes, they still enjoy visiting us. As well ensuring our high standards, these values have seen us supporting the community doing many weird and wonderful things, from 7 seated charity bike rides to bring your pet to work week.

With so few businesses managing to hit this milestone, we’re delighted that we’ve reached our 10th birthday. We’re now looking forward to the next 10.

If you’d like to speak to us in more detail about our solutions and our company, we’re always on the other end of the phone. Just call 03453 888 327 or email enquiries@virtualDCS.co.uk.

Veeam Challenge: Replicating legacy technology

Technology is either being created or updated every minute of every day and the cutting edge will soon be classed as legacy technology, with this in mind we’ve created the Veeam Challenge.

We often have conversations in the office around old tech and how things have changed. Typically, laughing as we talk about our old mobile phones the size of bricks, the unforgettable sound of the dial-up modem and the inevitable argument that followed when anyone wanted to use the phone.

virtualDCS Veeam challengeWe still have the memories, but wouldn’t it be even better to have the technology itself or even just the data on them? I’m sure many would love to see the pictures they took on their first ever camera phone again or the first email they ever sent.

Everyone, especially businesses, should have some way of protecting their data, historic or otherwise, and one of (in our opinion) the best ways to protect business information is using Veeam technology.

The challenge – can you beat the virtualDCS team at the Veeam Challenge?

This is where we came up with a challenge for our technical team – to find the oldest piece of computer technology they can and to replicate its data using Veeam Cloud Connect.

We’ll keep you updated on the team’s progress over on our Twitter page and if you think you can beat the team, we’d love to see what systems you’ve managed to protect. We’ll be giving away a prize to the winner.

What’s the oldest piece of technology you currently have?

We’ll also be dusting off any the old gadgets that we can’t bear to part with! Looking back at our favourite pieces of discontinued tech, talking about their evolution, how they shaped our lives and sharing any stories we may have.

Get involved

As always, we’d love for our customers, friends, family and readers to get involved, so we’re going to be sharing these stories on our social profiles, as well as our blog. But for now, we’re just going to ask you one question:

‘When you look back at childhood, what technology makes you smile when thinking about it?’
virtualdcs disaster recovery awareness

virtualDCS is a pawsome place to work

One of the many reasons I love working at virtualDCS is that we can combine all of our different hobbies and interests into the tasks that we complete every day.

As long as it connects to our company values (and doesn’t make too much of a mess!) the directors are open to all suggestions. To make the most of this, each quarter we now have a different theme that radiates through our office, website and social media.

These themes and events are suggested and voted for by the virtualDCS team, so everyone gets involved. Last quarter we had a giveaway to celebrate our 10 year anniversary with Veeam… this quarter we’re inviting our faithful pets into the workplace! 

Each day, more and more animals are being welcomed into the office and with studies confirming that their presence relieves stress in the workplace, why wouldn’t we want our pampered pets with us at work?

How does pet protection and Disaster Recovery combine?

This idea sparked a discussion around if it was actually plausible to bring our animals to work, and ensure their safety in the office – could we keep them safe and content?

virtualdcs disaster recovery awareness

Obviously we don’t want anything but wagging tails and happy squeaks. It made us wonder how many companies actually include office animals in their disaster recovery plan.

In the event of a natural disaster hitting the office, such as office fire or flood, staff safety and data protection are the first thoughts, but where do our animal assistants fit in now they are on the rise?

How do businesses protect these animals from physical and psychological harm? After all, the Animal Welfare Act places a duty of care on people to ensure they take reasonable steps in all the circumstances to meet the welfare needs of their animals.

We decided that office pets also need to be included in the disaster recovery plan and that DR should be about more than just protecting data when a disaster strikes.

It was a unanimous vote where we decided that for the next few months, while we promote our own Disaster Recovery services we’ll also promoting the importance pet protection in a DR plan.

You can help! Join the fun on our Twitter feed.

As an animal mad, self-confessed crazy cat lady, I’m over the moon that we’ve introduced a new pet focus to the office and to kick off our new campaign, we’re having our first official bring your pet to work week!

From the 30th April until the 4th of May, team members will be bringing a different animal assistant into the office each day.

We also want all of our friends and followers to join in the fun, so we’ll be posting regular updates, pictures and office antics on our Twitter profile. We’re also going to be hosting a few competitions, one of which will be to find the best ‘animal assistant’.

You can join in with this, our first competition, by following us on Twitter @virtualDCS, where if you retweet the pinned post and send us a picture of your pet helping you at work or generally causing mayhem.

There are also plans for a caption competition and a ‘guess the number of’ game, so there’s no limit to the cute companions that can be entered… slime, fur and scales are all welcome!

Ready to get started? Just visit our Twitter profile and look out for our posts www.twitter.com/virtualDCS

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