Client: Phyllis Court
Established in 1906, Phyllis Court is a longstanding private members club ideally situated in a riverside location in Henley on Thames, on the borders of Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. A hotel as well as a club, the venue has been designed to be a ‘home away from home’ experience; providing a facility that is of a high standard, professional, accessible and adds value for its members.
As well as catering for its members as and when they chose to use the club and its facilities, Phyllis Court Club hosts a number of events each year which can involve large numbers of guests and needs its IT to seamlessly support its activities.
The business objective
With the nature of its business, having dedicated IT resource in-house to be able to proactively manage the technology and members’ needs was always the chosen path for the management team. However, through a combination of growing IT needs and the IT Manager departure, a decision was made to go out to market and look at alternative options.
The aim was to ascertain if they could maintain or exceed the service levels required whilst also creating a more robust IT provision. Cristina Sousa, Finance and Payroll Manager at Phyllis Court Club explains, ‘Whilst we had a fantastic and reliable IT Manager, we only had one individual looking after the IT. We could plan for holiday leave, but with our growing reliance on technology, it left us open in the event of sickness and other unplanned leave. Now was the time to review our options.’
Delivering customer service focused IT support
Phyllis Court went out to market and SDT was invited to tender for the contract. As a managed IT service provider, SDT is used to delivering IT support and working closely with in-house IT and non-IT teams to ensure a joined-up approach.
Based in Reading meant that it can also combine it’s remote and on-site support to deliver an efficient service, personably and cost effectively. The Club also involved their in-house IT Manager in the selection process to ensure that the IT as well as the business needs are met by the new provider. After a thorough process, SDT was engaged to deliver IT support.
The first step for SDT when onboarding a new client is to carry out an audit of the current IT environment and immerse themselves at the client site to ensure they know every aspect of the business relating to IT and getting to know the employees. Based on the requirements of the Club and any findings from the audit, a roadmap was created, implemented and signed off so that the Club can see the roadmap to enhance their IT. In addition to functionality, security and accessibility were key considerations during this process.
With a team of IT engineers rather than one person now supporting the Club, more can be achieved in shorter time scales. SDT hit the ground running with an initial project of implementing a new wireless network covering the whole site. The new secure wireless network is accessible for employees as well as members. The new network also allows for the need to support larger scale events on an ad-hoc basis.
Key business benefits Phyllis Court Club has seen
- The Club has access to specialist skills as and when needed rather than having to find contractors for certain projects. SDT manages the resource according to what is need each month.
- With access to a pool of IT resource, the Club doesn’t have to worry about covering holiday or sickness absence.
- The employees got to know it’s new IT team within the first few weeks with the engineers basing themselves on site to get to know everyone. This maintains a feeling of consistency of an in-house service for employees.
- SDT delivers against a 9:00 – 17:30, Monday to Friday contract, but at the point the Club had an outage over a weekend, SDT was contactable and available to help outside of normal hours.
- Maintenance aspects are managed outside of core business hours so that disruption is minimal for employees.
- The management team maintains control over a critical function of their business. The management are presented with all the information they need for key decisions and sign off. They are also involved in weekly IT meetings to discuss day to day aspects.
Cristina Sousa, Finance and Payroll Manager at Phyllis Court Club concludes, “Our team at SDT understands our precise requirements. Everyone is extremely helpful and now that we have a team rather than just one individual, we can recognise the improved security and resilience in our IT. They have already demonstrated their value in supporting us out of hours. Whilst an outsourced service, they really are a valued and integral part of our Club.”