Corporate, Education

IT overhaul brings stability and resilience to Bower Place’s essential services.


Bower Place was established in 1986 by Directors Malcolm Robinson and Catherine Sanders. They are a leader in psychology and mediation, training and corporate advisory and knowledge development, with a specialisation in family and systemic therapy.

Bower Place’s unique approach supports individuals, couples, children, adolescents and families through psychology, family therapy, mental health counselling and mediation. This approach works by looking at the whole person – inside and outside.

Their renowned training programs have supported more than 5000+ practitioners seeking further education and professional development in counselling and systemic practice, together with entry-level education in social service through a partnership with TAFE SA.

Bower Place is sought by corporations and government agencies for general consulting, workshops and systemic training, establishing Complex Needs Clinics (CNCs), conflict and dispute resolution.

Their commitment to sharing knowledge, research and expertise through an online portal and BowerNote enables them to continue relationships with students, consulting clients and individuals along with our wider profession.


Bower Place had been operating with an aging on-premise server and backup system for some time when the environment broke down. This led to a period of inoperability as it left the business unable to access emails and critical data sets. A failed recovery attempt caused corruption in multiple data sets, Bower Place’s incumbent IT provider recommended an entire refresh of the environment – proposing a new on-premise hardware-based solution.

As this was occurring, the COVID-19 pandemic was quickly escalating, meaning Bower Place had to pivot in a way that would enable their staff to work remotely, and their students would be able to attend lectures and classes online. They also had to immediately move to online/video consultations as clients could no longer come to the office. It meant a new on-premise hardware-based solution would not be feasible as it could risk:

  • Potential educational delays to students
  • Potential inability to provide care for patients
  • Drop in revenue and overall ability to operate

Needing to respond quickly to the developing situation, Bower Place turned to Blackbird IT via a third-party referral.


With a demonstrated history in delivering detailed projects with short turnarounds, Blackbird IT developed a proof of concept solution and presented to Bower Place. Among other things the solution consisted of Microsoft 365 with an emphasis on the collaboration capabilities of Microsoft Teams. After learning the solution would be implemented using a staged approach, Bower Place quickly signed off on the project.


Blackbird IT delivered a multi-faceted solution that incorporated a hardware upgrade to Windows 10, a modern cloud solution featuring Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams. Considering the industry that Bower Place operate in, it was integral that their sensitive intellectual property (IP) stayed secure, eliminating the possibility clinical or legal implications. As such, the solution also consisted of a modern Sophos antivirus solution and robust VPN for secure remote working and learning.

Having already lost access to their emails, it was vitally important that the solution was implemented as quickly and efficiently as possible. Because of this, the staged approach to implementation consisted of three phases.


Since the implementation took place, Bower Place has seen a number of key business outcomes emerge.

  • All students, practitioners and staff have the tools available to work efficiently and productively, in and out of the office.
  • All users now have secure, reliable and resilient tools built to empower a mobile workforce, and handle disruption
  • Group therapy sessions are now easily facilitated
  • Bower Place can now offer courses to a much wider geography – opening up opportunities for growth
  • Can also offer their IP to a wider community and students can complete placements at a location that suits them best
  • Business continuity through the secure and safe storage and protection of their IP

According to Bower Place General Manager, Kelly Paterson, the business outcomes have been fantastic, but it’s the business continuity element that truly stands out for them.


 We are so lucky to have found Blackbird IT. I don’t want to overstate it or sound too extravagant, but if we hadn’t moved to them prior to COVID, we simply wouldn’t have been able to operate. I honestly don’t think they understand how much they’ve saved us. – Kelly Paterson, Bower Place General Manager



In light of this project’s resounding success, Bower Place now have a stream of new opportunities to address when it comes to extending the reach of their offerings. With a workforce that is now empowered to operate anywhere and anytime, Blackbird IT have been engaged to manage Bower Place’s technology and business needs for today and the future with regular reviews and a long term partnership. The organisation’s website and branding is also being updated to better expand their student vocational offerings through a local supplier – Communikate.

During these uncertain times, technology plays an integral role in your ability to maintain business continuity. At the same time, it can enable new service models that can help to differentiate your organisation from the market. To learn how Blackbird IT can help you thrive amidst disruption. Get in touch with our friendly team today.

To learn how Blackbird IT can help you thrive amidst disruption, get in touch with our friendly team today by visiting

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