Trace Solutions Limited

BlueBox

BlueBox is a cloud hosted service charge management system. The system will perform the service charge budgeting, cost allocation, documentation to tenants and reconciliation. It will also manage rent calculations and the section 20 process.

Features

  • Remote Access
  • Real time reporting
  • Web access and interface
  • Export to Excel and other Microsoft products
  • Integration with accounting systems
  • Integrated full accounting
  • Service charge budgeting
  • Service charge accounting
  • Rent uplifts
  • Section 20 process management

Benefits

  • Service charge budgeting and automatic reconciliation significantly reduces workload
  • Many automation features to reduce user workload
  • Fully integrated accounting
  • Reports and alerts can be scheduled
  • Easy integration with existing systems
  • Widely used by housing associations
  • Low implementation overhead
  • Off the shelf configurable system for easy implementation
  • Standard data upload tools for bulk upload
  • Section 20 process ensures compliance and reduced lost revenue

Pricing

£300 to £907 per person per month

  • Free trial available

Service documents

Framework

G-Cloud 11

Service ID

6 6 5 4 2 2 6 5 6 2 7 5 7 6 8

Contact

Trace Solutions Limited

Adam Mackay

020 7825 1064

adam.mackay@tracesolutions.co.uk

Service scope

Software add-on or extension
No
Cloud deployment model
Community cloud
Service constraints
No, maintenance is performed out of hours and users are given notice counting down to any planned downtime.
System requirements
Up to date browser software is required.

User support

Email or online ticketing support
Email or online ticketing
Support response times
This depends on the fault severity. The highest severity will receive a response within half an hour. The helpdesk is also accessible by telephone for immediate contact. There is no application support at weekends.
User can manage status and priority of support tickets
Yes
Online ticketing support accessibility
None or don’t know
Phone support
Yes
Phone support availability
9 to 5 (UK time), Monday to Friday
Web chat support
No
Onsite support
Onsite support
Support levels
Support is supplied at no extra cost as it is included in the standard monthly price and we offer a high level of standard support with no option for greater support levels. Out of hours support can be offered on request and costs will be provided according to requirements. Most support is provided by the helpdesk but will be escalated to specialists as required.
Support available to third parties
Yes

Onboarding and offboarding

Getting started
We provide on site training. Remote training and training delivered at our London offices are also available. Documentation is available electronically and searchable help is available on our web site.
Service documentation
Yes
Documentation formats
  • HTML
  • PDF
End-of-contract data extraction
It is available either as an end user function - users can download their data, typically into Excel, or we will help with data migration.
End-of-contract process
There would not normally be any additional costs at the end of the contract. If we assist with data extraction, which is not typically necessary and certainly not mandatory, we would charge at our normal daily rate. Data can normally be extracted by yourselves. Where the system is used as a cloud service, log-ins will stop working at a date agreed between the parties. Where the system is on your own servers we will request that you stop using the system and delete the software. We will confirm in writing that your data has been permanently deleted at the end of the contract.

Using the service

Web browser interface
Yes
Supported browsers
  • Internet Explorer 9
  • Internet Explorer 10
  • Internet Explorer 11
  • Firefox
  • Chrome
  • Safari 9+
  • Opera
Application to install
No
Designed for use on mobile devices
Yes
Differences between the mobile and desktop service
Currently some modules are available on mobile devices and this functionality is becoming broader. The full system is available via Citrix, the full web interface allows standing data to be entered and updated with more to follow.
Service interface
No
API
Yes
What users can and can't do using the API
The system has APIs that are not truly open but can be used - using the APIs will require some programming work to enable interfacing. However the system also makes use of highly developed standard and configurable flat file interfaces that allow easy to set up interfacing both to and from BlueBox.
API documentation
No
API sandbox or test environment
Yes
Customisation available
Yes
Description of customisation
An administrator can customise the user interface, the navigation, lease and other codes and chart of accounts. This can be done via a variety of methods that are designed to be end user and do not require the customer to seek services from Trace.

Scaling

Independence of resources
Each customer is provided with their own instance and we monitor demand on each server. Our outsourced data centre provides burstable bandwidth to ensure that performance is not degraded by demand.

Analytics

Service usage metrics
No

Resellers

Supplier type
Not a reseller

Staff security

Staff security clearance
Other security clearance
Government security clearance
Up to Security Clearance (SC)

Asset protection

Knowledge of data storage and processing locations
Yes
Data storage and processing locations
United Kingdom
User control over data storage and processing locations
No
Datacentre security standards
Supplier-defined controls
Penetration testing frequency
At least once a year
Penetration testing approach
‘IT Health Check’ performed by a Tigerscheme qualified provider or a CREST-approved service provider
Protecting data at rest
Other
Other data at rest protection approach
We encrypt backups and passwords at rest, not all data.
Data sanitisation process
Yes
Data sanitisation type
Deleted data can’t be directly accessed
Equipment disposal approach
In-house destruction process

Data importing and exporting

Data export approach
Via reports - that can be written by you. The system also comes with a large number of standard reports. Various screens allow direct export.

Exports are typically to Excel but you can also use third party report writers or exports can be to any modern platform via standard or bespoke interfaces.
Data export formats
  • CSV
  • Other
Other data export formats
XML
Data import formats
  • CSV
  • Other
Other data import formats
XML

Data-in-transit protection

Data protection between buyer and supplier networks
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)
Data protection within supplier network
  • TLS (version 1.2 or above)
  • Legacy SSL and TLS (under version 1.2)

Availability and resilience

Guaranteed availability
99% during English business hours. As standard we do not offer refunds for issues that cause availability to be less than 99%
Approach to resilience
The data centre chosen by Trace Solutions is ISO 27001 compliant. Trace Solutions employ an N+1 design philosophy with regard to redundancy for the hardware that we use and for security reasons the design of this will only be disclosed subject to signing of a non-disclosure agreement.
Outage reporting
There is not a public dashboard but banner messages are displayed on the portal login screen as appropriate.

E-mail alerts are also issued.

Identity and authentication

User authentication needed
Yes
User authentication
Other
Other user authentication
Bi level user name and password
Access restrictions in management interfaces and support channels
Process of delegated authority starting with top level client assigned power user who then has full control over delegated staff authority.
Access restriction testing frequency
At least every 6 months
Management access authentication
2-factor authentication

Audit information for users

Access to user activity audit information
Users have access to real-time audit information
How long user audit data is stored for
User-defined
Access to supplier activity audit information
No audit information available
How long system logs are stored for
Between 1 month and 6 months

Standards and certifications

ISO/IEC 27001 certification
No
ISO 28000:2007 certification
No
CSA STAR certification
No
PCI certification
No
Other security certifications
No

Security governance

Named board-level person responsible for service security
Yes
Security governance certified
No
Security governance approach
Security is managed using internally developed standards. The data centre is a highly secure third party data centre.
Information security policies and processes
Trace Solutions has policies and procedures both for both our operational in-house responsibilities and for our hosted applications that relate to the data centre. Many of these contain security sensitive information and hence are not available for distribution outside of the company. Certain policies and procedures may be made available subject to a non-disclosure agreement being signed.

Operational security

Configuration and change management standard
Supplier-defined controls
Configuration and change management approach
Trace continually monitor the system components using Zabbix and Nagios. A automated reminder system is used to monitor and prompt to replace hardware and software when approaching the end on warranty.

Security is checked by using both an annual pen test, a continuous process of application security tests using Appcheck-NG and by following vendors best practice advice.
Vulnerability management type
Undisclosed
Vulnerability management approach
We employ a monitor IDS and Cisco ASA we also monitor our gateway portal for unusual activity.

Vendor recommended patches are deployed during the monthly maintenance window. Emergency packages can be deployed sooner.

Potential threats are as advised by hardware and software vendors we also use Talos and Kaspersky threat research
Protective monitoring type
Supplier-defined controls
Protective monitoring approach
All internet traffic connects via restricted gateway which in the first instance is monitored by Cisco security appliance. We record all source addresses and detect unusual login activities. Multiple unauthorised attempts at access result in the the source addresses being blacklisted automatically. Only authorised access to our portal is permitted, no anonymous access is allowed.

Response to threats is a mixture of automatic and manual process depending on severity. Security restraints cannot be described in public documents.

Speed of response depends on nature of threat.
Incident management type
Undisclosed
Incident management approach
We have a predefined procedure that cannot be disclosed in public documentation.

Secure development

Approach to secure software development best practice
Conforms to a recognised standard, but self-assessed

Public sector networks

Connection to public sector networks
No

Pricing

Price
£300 to £907 per person per month
Discount for educational organisations
No
Free trial available
Yes
Description of free trial
For trial, initial training, support during trial. Trials are typically 14 days but pre-contract proof of concept periods are available.

Service documents

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