CASE STUDY

CRM provider relies on Sungard Availability Services to keep its customers connected

Uptime is everything for CRM system provider All n One Ltd, the company behind the successful customer lifecycle management tool bxp software. bxp is a customisable web-based tool that supports prospect and pipeline management and can be extended to customer management and business development management. Case notes are updated in real time and a comprehensive reporting capability enables tactical, managerial and strategic reports to be generated at the click of a button.

With numerous customers, including Fexco, Ladbrokes, Mars and Meteoreircom relying on bxp to underpin their day-to-day operations, All n One Ltd has zero tolerance for downtime. “Our clients are using our systems to talk to their customers and record conversations so they cannot have our systems fail them,” explains All n One Ltd CEO Nick Wheeler.

All n One Ltd, in turn, depends on Sungard Availability Services to ensure high availability of its hybrid IT environment around the clock. It contracts Sungard AS’s Enterprise Cloud Service to give it SLA-backed uptime of 99.95%. Sungard AS manages All n One’s physical and virtual servers in its resilient Dublinbased Technology Centre and seamlessly delivers its systems and data back to the business. As well as all-important availability, this solution gives All n One Ltd the flexibility and scalability it needs to support its continued growth.

When All n One originally chose Sungard AS as its technology partner many years ago, as a relatively young company it particularly valued Sungard AS’s expertise. “One of the very real benefits we appreciated early on was the ability to get straight advice from Sungard AS without having to go to a separate consultancy firm, which was a huge bonus,” notes Philip Lacey, All n One’s IT and Projects Director. “We already had an idea how to run our IT infrastructure but Sungard AS gave us a better way to stay up.”

All n One customers, across a variety of industry sectors, depend on its bxp software to manage call centre activity and log contact with customers to help nurture relationships. Nick Wheeler cites the handling of brochure requests as one example of the way in which the bxp software can be used. When a prospective customer phones to request a brochure, the agent uses the system to note their details, store the information in a database, action the request and make a diary date for a follow-up call.

“We could not do what we do without a service that is very robust, very secure and very reliable. That’s why we put our trust in Sungard AS.” Nick Wheeler, CEO, All n One Ltd

“This is a relatively simple process at an individual level but when it’s performed by 1,000 or more agents at the same time if the website were to suddenly become unavailable for any reason the whole business would grind to a halt,” says Nick Wheeler. “We could not do what we do without a service that is very robust, very secure and very reliable. That’s why we put our trust in Sungard AS.”

That trust is not misplaced: All n One Ltd has enjoyed 100% uptime since the day it signed its first bxp customer. Downtime in Philip Lacey’s words, “simply doesn’t happen. This infrastructure has been planned to within an inch of its life.”

As Data Protection regulations become ever more stringent, All n One’s software has to be exceptionally secure and all data is encrypted throughout the end-to-end process. The company’s operating system and all of its servers must be up-to-date to ensure resilience and security. With its Windows 2003 servers nearing end of life, Philip Lacey recognised the company needed to upgrade and he and his team worked with Sungard AS over a period of 18 months to plan a smooth transition.

“Downtime simply doesn’t happen. This infrastructure has been planned to within an inch of its life.” Philip Lacey, IT and Projects Director, All n One Ltd

A delighted Nick Wheeler reports, “All the meticulous planning paid off. In the event, the switchover itself took less than five minutes and end users would not have noticed a thing – the system came straight back up, which is a huge testament to both the Sungard AS and All n One Ltd teams.” He freely admits, “I may not understand all the technical stuff but I do understand good customer service and that’s what we get from the Sungard AS team. Each and every person knows what they’re talking about and that makes such a difference.” Philip Lacey agrees: “I can pick up the phone and ask a technical question knowing I’m going to get some proper consultancy advice, not just someone trying to sell me something.” Commenting on the relationship that has developed between All n One and Sungard AS, Philip Lacey remarks, “There’s no doubt it’s a partnership as our fortunes are inextricably linked.”

“There’s no doubt it’s a partnership as our fortunes are inextricably linked.” Philip Lacey, IT and Projects Director, All n One Ltd

Business challenge

Fast-growing CRM system provider needed a technology partner it could trust to manage its IT infrastructure and give impartial consultancy advice. With numerous blue-chip names counting on its core product to manage key business operations, high availability was paramount.

Solution
  • Enterprise Cloud Services (ECS)
Benefits
  • Resilient, robust solution ensures high availability of IT infrastructure
  • Fully managed service frees All n One IT team to focus on projects that add value
  • Flexibility and scalability to support ambitious growth plans
  • Access to specialist technical expertise on tap
  • Peace of mind for All n One and its customers.

Following the sun

Having grown its client base in Ireland since 2008, the Dublin-based company is pursuing its ambition to expand worldwide by offering bxp to clients across the globe who want to ‘follow the sun’.

The bxp software stores data in one central database, which is updated in real time. Its Sungard AS solution gives All n One the ability to run client-specific data backups at any time of the day or night for clients across different time zones. For example, at the end of the working day agents in a Silicon Valley contact centre team may pass its tasks or case load to a support team in Bangalore, India to be progressed. This team, in turn, passes its work to a European-based team at the end of its own working day. In this way, work can continue around the clock.

According to Nick Wheeler, having less than 100% service availability would be “a nightmare scenario.” He expands on this point, “It would quite possibly be cheaper to host bxp ourselves but this would undoubtedly be a false economy as we don’t have the knowledge, experience or in-depth support to even consider it. I need the peace of mind day in, day out that our clients will get the service they are paying for. I sleep like a log because I know our IT infrastructure is in safe hands.”

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