Hoskins Architects has been trading in Glasgow since 1998, winning wide praise for innovative design concepts.
Its past projects include: new visitor facilities at Edinburgh Castle, the renovation of Aberdeen’s Art Gallert, and the redevelopment of the National Museum of Scotland.
After starting out as a sole trader, Gareth Hoskins built up a team of 40 before his death in 2016. The team is now led by an experienced board of directors. The firm tenders for work all over Europe, recently winning projects at Vienna’s World Museum and Schleswig’s Gottorf Castle.
The expansion has been so successful that a Berlin office was opened in March 2014, which meant installing an IT system that could access the Glasgow network whilst still allowing locally stored data was crucial.
Niall Iain Wright is a Director Associate and the IT Manager at Hoskins. He recalls: “When we opened the Berlin office, we initially had five people working on an ad-hoc peer-to-peer network which required individual VPNs.”
The Fortinet-based solution was installed to operates on a router-to-router level, along with a Distributed File System, meaning everyone has access to the same information, regardless of location. There’s one physical box on the Berlin site, but it runs two virtualised software servers, bringing the cost down significantly. It also allows management to work from home.
The project required a trip to Germany, but all the groundwork was done in the UK. Niall Iain explains: “A member of the Jera team joined me in Berlin, but we actually built the server in Glasgow and tested it in our office, ensuring everything synchronised and spoke to each other. We went over one weekend, and everything was set up within 24 hours. It’s been running smoothly ever since.”