MS Exchange Helpdesk

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Professional Services Case Study for Third Largest Provider of Life Insurance Products in the United States

Customer profile

  • Our customer, established in 1907, is the third largest provider of life insurance products in the U.S.
  • Assets in 2009: $42.3 Billion
  • Revenues in 2009: $3.1 Billion

Business situation

The customer was migrating the company-wide email system from Lotus Notes to MS Exchange/Outlook. Many of the customer’s employees were not familiar with using MS Outlook. Additionally, the current helpdesk was not experienced with supporting MS Exchange/Outlook and did not have the necessary personnel to handle the expected increase in call volume throughout the migration. In order to manage the helpdesk call volume, the migration was to be done gradually reaching all of the business units over a 6-week period.

The customer needed to temporarily augment its staff with individuals experienced with providing technical support to end users experiencing problems with MS Outlook, who could also help transfer knowledge of MS Exchange/Outlook support to the existing helpdesk staff. An RFQ was issued to the company’s four Tier 1 IT staffing providers requesting suggested solutions, pricing, availability of resources, and service guarantees.

Based on the quality of Hamilton-Ryker’s response to the RFQ, most-competitive pricing, proven history of success with similar engagements, and ability to quickly recruit and guarantee qualified consultants, Hamilton-Ryker was awarded the project.

The Requirements

The customer required the following:

  • (2) Level 2 helpdesk technicians (with a minimum of 6 years of hands-on customer service and IT experience including support of MS Outlook 2007 and MS Office 2007)
  • (4) Level 1 helpdesk technicians (with a minimum of 3 years of hands-on customer service and IT experience including support of MS Outlook 2007 and MS Office 2007) were needed to augment the existing staff.
  • All technicians must be drug tested, have technical references verified, and have a federal and statewide criminal background investigation completed prior to starting the project.
  • Pre-screened alternate candidates at both levels must be available to start within 1 business day in the event that a project technician becomes ill, fails to show, or is deemed a poor fit for the project.

The Result

Within two days of being awarded the project, Hamilton-Ryker had successfully recruited all six helpdesk technicians AND multiple alternates for each level. On the morning of the first day of the project, HamiltonRyker’s recruiters personally walked in all six contractors, who began working and providing support from day one. All six contractors performed at the highest possible level, and were retained for the duration of the six-week project. Hamilton-Ryker followed up with the customer on a weekly basis, and received positive feedback from the supervisors and multiple end-users.

The migration was completed on time, and with the augmented staff provided by Hamilton-Ryker, the helpdesk was able to successfully support all of its end users throughout the project. The customer was so impressed by the quality of the technicians provided, that the top two were retained on contract for an additional four and a half months, and were then hired on as full-time employees.


Hamilton-Ryker’s response to the RFQ guaranteed the most-affordable hourly rates for both technician levels needed, thus the customer was able to save several dollars/hour for each of the 1,440+ man hours that the project required.

Additionally, Hamilton-Ryker was able to provide previously-utilized resources for this project. Also, HamiltonRyker’s strong local history and previous experience working with many of the customer’s supervisors allowed Hamilton-Ryker to factor in management styles and other intangibles while recruiting for the project. The result of these two factors was zero turnover throughout the course of the project, thus the customer did not experience any interruptions in the augmented staff’s production.

The customer also benefited greatly by being able to retain two of the project contractors on a long-term basis and eventually converting them to full-time employees, thus the customer was able to fill to vacant internal positions without incurring additional internal or external recruiting costs.

Recruiting Tools and Resources Used

Recruiting Staff:

  • Locally-based recruiters
  • Regionally-based recruiters
  • Off-Shore recruiters

Recruiting Tools:

  • Hamilton-Ryker proprietary candidate database
  • Job Board databases (,,,, and
  • Job Board Posting (,,
  • Social Media resources (LinkedIn, Facebook, Craigslist, Twitter)

Screening Resources:

  • Hamilton-Ryker Technical Reference Form (including Company Name, Dates of Employment, Supervisor’s Name & Contact Info, Description of Job Duties, and Assessment of Key Employee Qualities) completed by Hamilton-Ryker recruiter
  • 7-panel Drug Test (conducted by ESS, Inc.)
  • 7-year Federal and Statewide Criminal Background Investigation (conducted by ESS, Inc.)

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