Archipelago Marine Research

Archipelago Marine Research has been providing sustainable marine resource management products and services since 1978. Headquartered in Victoria, BC, Archipelago serves the global community by providing services like at-sea and dockside observer services, electronic monitoring programs and equipment, and marine environmental services.

Archipelago recognized that their outdated Microsoft Dynamics GP 2010 solution needed to be upgraded to Dynamics GP 2016 R2, since the payroll module they were using would soon be losing Microsoft support. They also wanted to ensure that their data and technology was safe should a natural or human-induced disaster ever hit. A decision was made to move the solution to Azure (Microsoft Cloud) in conjunction with upgrading Dynamics GP in order to benefit from the cloud’s ease of accessibility, the predictable monthly fee, and the peace of mind that comes with disaster recovery planning.

Says Michael Gjernes, IT Manager, on moving their Dynamics GP solution to the cloud; “Azure has taken a major worry off the shoulders of the IT team.”

Another big advantage that Archipelago has found is with the remote desktop server. It is now vastly simpler for them to maintain one application install of Dynamics GP, as opposed to the 15 installs they previously had to maintain while on-premise. With the ability to now access GP remotely, employees are able to work from home, and are experiencing no decrease in system performance. In fact, they note that the solution actually runs faster now than it did before.

According to Wes Wong, Director of Finance and Administration;

“The (Dynamics GP) experience has been improved upon, I actually can’t see any downside from what we were doing previously. It’s all been a pretty positive experience. People have worked from home and have not had any performance lag whereas when we were hosting on-premise, that wasn’t really an option.”

During the upgrade process from version 2010 to 2016 R2, Archipelago were thankful to see the project with Encore go smoothly and for the schedule to stay right on track. Archipelago had recently completed an upgrade for another business solution with a different vendor and had found that experience to be chaotic and frustrating. The upgrade experience with Encore was in stark contrast to this previous project, and it was evident to Archipelago that Encore’s project team ran the upgrade project very well. All goals for the upgrade to Dynamics GP 2016 R2 were met and the project was fully successful.

With a number of satellite offices and plenty of part-time and seasonal field staff, being able to send paystubs and T4’s electronically has been extremely well-received at Archipelago. They decided to implement ePayStub, a GP add-on solution provided by Encore, that enables companies to email their Canadian employees pay documents like paystubs, T4s, T4As, or R1s.

“I was shocked that GP didn’t have a native capability for that, but luckily you guys do and it’s a very reasonably priced solution, so it was a no-brainer” – Wes Wong, Director of Finance and Administration.

Archipelago’s account representative from Encore continues to go above and beyond to help them with researching compatible solutions for their system, often coming back with several options for solutions to improve their business processes. Archipelago has found their account rep to always be very responsive and willing to help whenever needed.

Says Wong of their partnership with Encore;

“I regularly get calls from other GP solutions vendors and really I’ve always been very happy with Encore, I’ve never had an excuse to look anywhere else.”