Future of Cloud Computing

Child in a refugee camp. Taken by Oliver Tringham, AMERA International trustee.

RIPS is part of the future of cloud computing. Digital solutions are the future of case management, revolutionising how we can help refugees. RIPS is GDPR compliant.

Technical requirements

When accessing RIPS through the cloud

For off-site installations, we provide a RIPS application that can be downloaded, installed and set up.

We recommend the online version of RIPS as it holds information safely in the cloud. To run RIPS all you need is a web browser on your laptop or PC and access to the internet. If, as we recommend, we are hosting your RIPS case management system, you will need to have an internet connection to connect to this service.

If you decide to install on-site

We are happy to offer help with on-site installation – either by telephone, Skype, hangout or screen share. We can also visit your offices, although we ask that our travel and subsistence costs are covered.

For an on-site installation, we recommend two Windows virtual machines (or servers). Server 1 runs the Microsoft IIS web server and holds the RIPSWeb applications, report templates and services.

The use of RIPS on-site does not require a connection to the internet. It will run on a secure intranet which limits access to users on your local network. If caseworkers wish to access RIPS when meeting clients outside their organisation’s office, Server 1 needs to be online. Server 2 runs the Microsoft SQL Server and holds all client files. It must be firmly protected from the internet by a firewall.

 

Installation

Cloud

To install RIPS for the cloud email david.johnston@amerainternational.org

First we will provide you with access to the RIPS demo system so that you can explore the nature of RIPS and its current features. When you are confident we can provide you with online training for your RIPS supervisor to configure RIPS to your services, followed by training for your caseworkers on how to use the case management system. Bespoke changes to RIPS will be made as you require to suit the needs of your organisation.

On-site

There are three options for on-site installation:

  1. RIPS can be downloaded and installed as an offline version.
  2. We send you a data storage device to install RIPS.
  3. Our staff visit your office, install the software on your servers and set up RIPS according to your requirements. In this case, the technical requirements (see above) must be available. We also ask that our staff’s travel expenses and subsistence are covered.

If you intend to set up RIPS on your own, you will receive a manual to help you with the installation of the system and the use of the RIPS Manager. Due to the complexity of the options above we discourage users from implementing RIPS on-site as there is extra costs to be accommodated.

 

Hosting Service

RIPS is provided as a secure hosted solution to protect client information. Applied Network Solutions’ security measures have been inspected and approved by the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), which has granted Applied Network Solutions the ISO 27001 accreditation. ISO 27001 is a recognised industry ‘gold standard’ accreditation and demonstrates our highest level of commitment to data protection and information security.

In addition, Applied Network Solutions has 20 years’ experience of managing and building databases and maintaining hosted solutions for a range of organisations across the globe. We also have a strong pedigree in training, supporting and developing RIPS – in response to customer feedback and needs.

RIPS hosted solution provides:
  • Access to your RIPS system with maximum uptime.
  • An automatic off-site storage of backups protects your data.
  • Automatic updates to the software to ensure that you benefit from continual new RIPS features.
RIPS hosted solution can also include:
  • Importing old records held on another system across to RIPS.
  • Set up of servers.
  • Set up and maintenance of firewalls and security.
  • Ongoing installation of Microsoft service packs, as required.
  • Implementation of secure access for your own IT staff.
  • Set up of passive backup servers in the event of hardware failure.
  • AMERA International aims to cover the future ongoing cost of SQL Server licences.

Benefits of a hosted solution over on-site method:

  • Security of data
  • Safety for case workers and their laptops
  • The cloud is less expensive
  • Some NGO IT staff may not be qualified to look after complex systems, whereas ANS has expertise
  • ANS share effort involved in writing bespoke reports required by funders. In our experience the cost of building reports required by funders is the most time consuming part of any case management implementation.

Training

Training is offered either online via WebEx or Skype or on-site by Applied Network Solutions’ staff, who can visit your offices. Training can be provided to support you in setting up the system and administering it. In addition, we can also show you how to run your own training sessions – where a local trainer from your organisation is equipped to further train your employees. Training usually starts with the person who is responsible for the administration of RIPS, followed by training for caseworkers.

For on-site training sessions, we recommend no more than eight people per session. For off-site online interactive training, we recommend up to three people per session. Ahead of your training sessions, we encourage people to submit specific, targeted questions to Applied Network Solutions to help users get the most from the sessions. The training sessions are very interactive and we encourage caseworkers to take notes and ask lots of questions.

User Groups

To share best practice in providing advice and legal aid, Applied Network Solutions will assist you in setting up your own user groups. In RIPS Manager, you can set up your own regions, offices, teams and users – enabling reports to be produced at all levels. This mechanism enables users to discover how best to use RIPS for specialist applications.

Help Desk

The RIPS Help Desk is manned from 9am to 5pm (GMT+1) and will provide immediate assistance.

Phone: +44 (0) 1256 300 790

E-mail: support@answeb.co.uk

Applied Network Solutions Limited
The Innovation Centre
Norden House
Basing View
Basingstoke
Hampshire
RG21 4HG.
United Kingdom

Online support

Applied Network Solutions also uses WebEx and Skype to demonstrate how to solve a problem. We can coordinate conference calls if your users of RIPS are in different locations. Our staff will also work out of office hours with advance arrangement.

Legal training

In addition, if you are interested in legal training for your work with  refugees, please contact info@amerainternational.org.