Managed IT Case Study: IT Consolidation Strategy for Ridgeway Automotive
By implementing an IT consolidation strategy and ongoing managed support services, Optimising IT helped empower the development potential of the UK’s fastest-growing motor dealership, Ridgeway Automotive Group.
The Business: Ridgeway Automotive
Ridgeway Automotive, the fast-growing motor dealership group in the UK, delivers high standards of excellence to its customers across a rapidly expanding range of outlets.
Ridgeway, whose premium car brands include Audi, Jaguar, BMW, Maserati and Mercedes-Benz, has grown quickly through acquisitions, new site builds and organic interest. As Ridgeway moved from strength to strength, the automotive group needed to consider their IT systems’ value carefully, and their ability to keep up with ever-increasing demand.
The Challenge Faced by Ridgeway
The rapid expansion of Ridgeway Automotive left the company with a mix of IT managers and service companies, all operating on different platforms independently. This is a common problem for businesses that have gone through a fast-paced period of acquisition and accumulation of business property and assets.
Now ranked in the top 20 of the UK’s largest Motor Retail Groups, Ridgeway came to Optimising IT looking for a company that could reflect its customer service values to help build a solid and long-lasting strategic relationship.
The challenge for Optimising IT was to help Ridgeway through the implementation of an important IT system consolidation strategy. We were tasked with delivering a consistently high standard of service that worked cohesively for all 1200 Ridgeway employees based across 28 sites and in five counties. Ridgeway required one system that worked for everyone, bringing their enterprise together and connecting all their employees and dealership sites through manageable and straightforward IT.
The Results: What Did We Do?
Our comprehensive technology review and initial transformation projects, involved various system updates and deployment of IT consolidation strategy. Optimising IT then implemented a full IT managed service covering technical, network and server support, procurement and ongoing consultancy, and advice on IT strategy.
To quote the Finance Director of Ridgeway Automotive Group:
“We’re a very busy company, and we need our IT systems to run smoothly. With Optimising IT, we know we’ve got a partner who shares the same values for their customers. That means we can trust them to ensure our IT is the best it can be. Working with Optimising IT has made a huge difference and leaves us free to focus on delivering the excellent customer service we’re renowned for.”
Our improvements to the stability and connectivity of Ridgeway transformed how this titan of the automotive industry worked, increasing productivity and furthering their rapid expansion efforts.
The Approach: How Did We Do It?
When starting any project, our top priority is always to review and investigate current IT systems and practice to identify potential vulnerabilities, weaknesses and pitfalls that can help us with our recommendations moving forward. While we knew from the start that Ridgeway Automotive would require an IT system consolidation strategy, our team was eager to delve deeper into their organisation’s IT infrastructure to uncover any other potential problems that may need to be addressed.
Our IT system and technology review proved to be highly rewarding. It allowed the Optimising IT team to understand the Ridgeway business model better and earned us a glimpse into their plans for the future. We carried out this review alongside an evaluation of Ridgeway’s day-to-day IT provision. Our evaluation covered regularly occurring technical issues and faults driving down productivity and workplace efficiency, analysis of the reliability of equipment and software, and investigations into the safety of data across the organisation.
These reviews and evaluations were instrumental in helping us organise our early development plans for Ridgeway Automotive. The first stage of our approach was immediate improvements to internet connectivity and wi-fi access, as we discovered there were major technical network issues hampering success. As part of our IT consolidation strategy, we also migrated workplace applications across Ridgeway to a single service under Microsoft 365.
Another important step in our efforts to improve the digital transformation of Ridgeway’s IT service delivery was the introduction of an IT service desk. This service would ensure every one of the company’s 1200 employees had access to a dedicated IT technical expert team whenever they were facing a problem with their IT system. This allowed our team to help them resolve their issues and helped us identify further problems that we could address through our managed IT services.
Highlights and Key Benefits for Ridgeway Automotive
Gary Smith, Managing Director of Optimising, comments on the Ridgeway Automotive Group project:
“Our vision when we started Optimising IT was never just to have ticket loggers or scripted responses for our clients. We are committed to providing a dedicated and knowledgeable IT service desk. That means an accountable and friendly team dedicated to getting to the root cause of a problem and solving it as quickly as possible. It’s an approach Ridgeway appreciates and one that our team loves to deliver.”
Our key highlights from this case study include:
- Vital to the transformation of Ridgeway’s IT service delivery was introducing a service desk supporting 1200 employees committed to solving most of their issues on the first call. Such a seamless approach to IT support management, with help available to everyone via a single dedicated phone number, transformed the way Ridgeway managed day-to-day operations.
- Our consultative approach to reviewing Ridgeway’s IT function allowed us to eliminate various system inefficiencies and empower IT consolidation strategy, including immediate improvements to the delivery of consistent wi-fi across all 28 sites and the migration of services for all employees to Microsoft 365.
- Ongoing IT management services continue to monitor day-to-day IT system function at Ridgeway Automotive, resolving any issues that may impact productivity, efficiency and service reliability.
Together, Optimising IT and Ridgeway Automotive Group addressed key IT concerns, removed barriers and enabled the organisation’s continued expansion plans.