Horizon Digital Sound & Vision are a family run business supplying aerials, satellite systems and digital home entertainment systems across the South of England.
When they approached us for help, their phone system was no longer supporting the smooth running of their business. They had lost confidence in their existing phone provider and were battling with a system that was expensive and inappropriate for their business needs. We had helped Horizon in the past and they returned to us for a solution.
Horizon were aware that their computer equipment was slow and running outdated software. This made everyday operations inefficient and frustrating. Furthermore, their file server had been disabled by a virus which had also wiped a lot of their software and more importantly, their data.
They were at a crossroads – fix what they had or try something new. We were able to offer them a combined solution which would solve both their phone and IT challenges. After due consideration, Horizon decided to embrace change:
“We preferred to invest into the future not fix the past, this is exactly where Communications Solutions UK helped us – and we have shot more into the future than we realised we could or would.” Sara, Horizon
Horizon were clear that they wanted a solution that was cost-effective, required minimal investment and would be future-proof.
For the complete transformation that they needed we agreed that combining hosted telephony and Microsoft Office 365 was the way forward. This would reduce their operating costs and provide a phone and IT service that was fully customisable and always up-to-date.
Updating their phone system
A Cisco hosted system as a pay-monthly subscription service using a broadband line gave them ultimate flexibility. This feature rich system provided them with the tools to deliver a professional and efficient call experience to their customers.
Transforming their IT system
Having been plagued with on-site server problems, Horizon saw the advantage of moving to Office 365, a hosted pay-monthly subscription IT service. The benefits of Office 365 included data security, automatic software updates and the flexibility to share information both in the office and remotely on any device.
As part of streamlining their operations, bulky outdated PCs were replaced with laptops, giving portability for their engineers’ home visits and freeing up valuable office space. To improve productivity, we recommended keeping their existing PC screens so that they could use two screens simultaneously to help with multi-tasking.
“The day to day running of the business has been transformed. When we trialled Office 365, our engineers offered to pay for it personally if we had chosen not to have it! They liked accessing their diaries, emails, and files from anywhere at any time from not only their work laptops, but iPhones and even their home computers too – this helped with the smooth running of the business and helped them manage their own time and customers more efficiently.” Sara, Horizon
Day-to-day operations have improved
The new IT infrastructure and latest software has improved speed and efficiency. Having standard software available to all users has improved productivity and work flow.
Horizon recently completed a time and motion study to see how the changes have impacted on their business. They were delighted to discover that the business now saves 60 minutes daily. Their working practices have been transformed.
“Office 365, with its ability to share data via the cloud is transforming how we do things. As I get my head around it, I can see more potential improvements and cloud based data storage is a revelation!” Les, Horizon
Customer service has improved
Shared diaries and customer contacts have streamlined call handling and engineer allocation. Improved call features mean that customers are being dealt with promptly and efficiently.
Shared mailboxes have allowed staff to respond to customer emails more promptly.
Remote access to customer information for engineers on the road has improved communications and contributed to improved customer service.
Staff morale has improved
Staff have welcomed the changes. The latest technology has not only made their jobs easier but has helped them provide an even more professional service.
“This system has had a huge positive impact on the staff as well. It has given a boost to morale and the staff feel we have invested in them.” Sara, Horizon
A hosted solution has given Horizon the cost-effective, reliable, secure IT and phone systems that they needed, as well as unexpected savings and productivity gains that have helped boost their business.