Caldera Health

Research Startup Adopts Cloud Service Solution, Ensures Intellectual Property Privacy

Solution Overview:

Organization Size

7 employees

Organization Profile

Founded in February 2009, Caldera Health Ltd. uses molecular technologies to develop diagnostic devices for detecting early stage prostate cancer and determining the phenotype of the prostate cancer.

Software and Services

  • Microsoft Office 365
  • Microsoft Exchange Online

Vertical Industries

  • Life Sciences, Chemicals; Oil & Gas, Mining
  • Health Information Exchanges

New Zealand


Company Overview:

Founded in February 2009, Caldera Health Ltd. uses molecular technologies to develop diagnostic devices for detecting early stage prostate cancer and determining the phenotype of the prostate cancer.

CALDERA HEALTH Case StudyMedical startup Caldera Health Ltd. used Google for email and calendaring and was concerned that its intellectual property was being compromised. It enlisted Need A Nerd, a member of the Microsoft Partner Network, to migrate its existing system to Microsoft Office 365. It benefits from highly secure communications, predictable pricing with easy scalability, enhanced productivity, and hassle-free IT services.

Business Needs:

Located in Auckland, New Zealand, Caldera Health Ltd. is developing novel diagnostic tests in the field of prostate cancer and men’s health. Its strategy is to develop three biomarker platforms for detecting the early stages of prostate cancer. “Our main goal is to provide model diagnostics for prostate cancer,” says Damian White, Facilities Manager at Caldera Health Ltd. “The current diagnostic tool is very limited and unreliable. The world is currently looking for other ways to detect the disease early.”

With only nine PCs, Caldera Health lacks an IT department. Most of its work is done in the lab on computer-programmed hardware. It transfers lab results—the company’s intellectual property—from the lab hardware to individual PCs. Caldera Health spent two years using Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Docs. “When we set up the company, there was very little thought put into IT,” says White. “We just wanted a basic platform for email so that we could communicate with one another—to get the company moving. The Google fees were low and it was initially appealing.”

As Caldera Health expanded, it gained more investors. The company was preparing for formal studies, and even though its data was raw and “blinded,” it wanted to be able to assure investors that their intellectual property was protected. Over time, however, security and privacy became an issue with Google applications, and the company required a more reliable backup system. “Using Google became a huge concern,” says White. “We didn’t know where our data was being stored or how it was being observed by Google. It’s widely known that Google interrogates your information. We wanted to migrate to a more secure system that would protect the privacy of our email communications and documents.”


In September 2012, White called Need A Nerd, a member of the Microsoft Partner Network, which introduced the company to Microsoft Office 365, an online service that unites familiar Microsoft applications with the power of email, calendaring, collaboration, and communications solutions. “Everyone at Caldera Health had used Microsoft applications before, so it seemed like a great option,” says White. “Our contact at Need A Nerd said Office 365 would easily meet our needs with minimum fuss with setup and migration.”

Microsoft Office 365 was a step up from what Google was offering. We feel our intellectual property is more private.… This solution definitely puts our investors’ minds at ease.

– Damian White
Facilities Manager, Caldera Health Ltd.

Over the next few months, Need A Nerd prepared for the migration and then spent 48 hours setting up a security-enhanced email system that would tie together all Caldera Health users. Caldera Health employees were already familiar with Microsoft productivity tools, so there was no training required. “Within a week, everyone was using the email and calendar functionality with no issues,” says White. “During the migration, nothing affected us; everything was migrated seamlessly.”

Caldera Health continues to grow in size, it wants a reliable system that will scale as needed. Because Office 365 is available on a per-user monthly subscription basis, the company can easily add users. Says White, “We wanted a solution that someone like me, who has limited IT experience, can easily do everything we need to do with it.”

The company chose the E1 Office 365 plan, which includes Microsoft Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, Lync Online, and Office Web Apps. Currently, it is using only Exchange Online for email communications and calendar functionality. Caldera Health plans to outsource clinical validation studies in the next year, so it will need a reliable videoconferencing solution to communicate with remote researchers. Need A Nerd will work with Caldera Health to implement SharePoint Online and Lync Online within the next year.


Caldera Health now has a productivity solution that is optimized for privacy and security. It benefits from a regular monthly subscription rate, the ability to easily add new employees, and enhanced productivity for all employees. “Email is flawless and every employee can see everyone else’s calendar,” says White. “We have a solution that we can grow into and don’t have any concerns about it.”

Increased Privacy and Security
With Office 365, the company solved its most pressing concern: the confidentiality of its intellectual property. “Microsoft Office 365 was a step up from what Google was offering,” says White. “We feel our intellectual property is more private. Some investors have asked about the security of our data, just to make sure we’re looking after it. This solution definitely puts our investors’ minds at ease.”

Streamlined IT Services, Reduced Costs, and Scalability
Caldera Health now has predictable monthly subscription costs, can easily add users as it expands, and can forecast IT expenditures. The Office 365 solution requires no dedicated IT department, and the company saves money on administration costs. “We have limited IT expertise. But someone like me, who’s very inexperienced, can administer the solution successfully and migrate new staff members to Office 365 without any problems,” says White. “It’s very simple and cost-effective.”

Improved Productivity
With Office 365, Caldera Health avoids training costs because employees are familiar with the tools. Employees can easily access email and calendars from virtually any device, so they can respond to requests rapidly. “We save a few hours a week with Office 365,” says White. “We don’t worry about IT issues. We can spend our time on our core business—research.”


Microsoft Case Study: Caldera Health

Partner(s): Need A Nerd

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