Workforce management solution.
How a major partner of Sky became one of the fastest growing businesses in the UK
As a sub-contractor to major telecommunications company Sky, Custom was responsible for the installation, maintenance and repair of Sky equipment in UK homes and businesses.
Custom stored all the information necessary to manage its workforce of 600 permanent and sub-contracted engineers, 400 vehicles and six warehouses in a variety of spreadsheets and databases. However, this disjointed method was proving ineffective, particularly when it came to keeping track of the large volumes of stock that needed to be correctly distributed throughout its network.
With the cost of missing stock threatening to dent its profits, Custom decided to partner with ISB to develop a bespoke workforce management and stock control system that would centralise all of their vital information.
We developed a solution that dramatically increased the efficiency of Custom’s operations by enabling it to hold all the information necessary to effectively manage its resources, assets, jobs and stock in one easy to use application.
Paperless workforce management
In the past, Custom was required to process 2,000 paper work orders from Sky every day. These were then distributed to engineers in various locations and returned to Sky with a customer signature on completion of the job.
The new system, however, enabled both Custom and Sky to manage this process online without the need to complete stacks of paperwork. Having received electronic work orders from Sky, the intelligent application would automatically route work to the appropriate engineer based on their location, skill set, job type and the availability of the equipment required. Engineers in the field could easily view the information they required to complete their assigned jobs by accessing the application via their mobile or tablet device. All of this meant that Custom’s engineers could complete their jobs on the first visit, resulting in improved customer service and increased productivity.
No more surprise bills
Custom handled over one million items of equipment for Sky. However, in the absence of a comprehensive stock control system, it was easy to lose track of items. This resulted in Custom having to repay large sums of money to Sky at the end of each year as reimbursement for missing stock.
The stock control tools included in the solution we created made it easy for Custom to track every item of stock as it moved from Sky to the Custom warehouse, to individual engineers, and finally the customers’ premises. With complete visibility of all stock, Custom not only avoided unnecessary costs but was also able to reduce its shrinkage rate from 5% to 0.1%.
Carefully managed assets
All of Custom’s staff were given access to a range of assets including vehicles, tools, phones and fuel cards. The application we delivered enabled Custom to easily record and access information about these assets, such as vehicle service and maintenance history and insurance information.
The solution’s limit system also helped to ensure that any assets or benefits provided by Custom were not abused by staff by automatically generating deductions if, for example, staff exceeded their phone usage allowance or incurred any parking or congestion charge fines.
Improved customer service
Custom’s main aim was to deliver exceptional customer service to Sky’s customers. It was therefore vital that any customer complaints were dealt with quickly and in accordance with Custom’s ISO 9001 accredited quality management procedures.
Adhering to ISB’s own strict ISO 9001 processes, we developed customer issue tracking tools within the system that enabled Custom to log all complaints and create audit trails and task lists. By keeping all communication relating to the issue in one place, Custom could ensure that if a customer called to discuss their issue, staff would have all the information they needed to provide continuous support.
The system enabled Custom to easily report on customer issues and use resolution speed as a KPI for teams across the company.
Secure customer data
These days, the security of customer data is a hot topic, especially for blue chip organisations such as Sky. Custom’s relationship with Sky meant that thousands of customers’ data passed through its system every day. The new solution was created in accordance with ISB’s own strict, ISO 27001 accredited information security management procedures to ensure that any data held by Custom, as well as all data transmission processes were fully protected.
Improved Health & Safety
Ensuring the Health & Safety of its workers was a vital concern for Custom. The new system enabled Custom to do this by providing an area to record and manage staff training, toolbox talks and on site risk assessments. Not only did the system allow Custom to significantly improve all of its Health & Safety KPIs, it also made it easy to demonstrate the robustness of its procedures to both internal and external auditors in order to achieve several Health & Safety accreditations.
Easily accessible information
To offer maximum transparency, the solution included staff, client and customer portals where these groups were authorised to view any information relevant to their role.
For example, Custom staff would be able to retrieve job information and view their phone and fuel charges as well as any deductions they might have incurred.
Customers on the other hand would not only be able to check on the progress of their jobs but could also provide any additional information that Custom might need to aid engineers. This was particularly useful for jobs in London, which were often difficult to access. The system was configured to send customers with inner-London postcodes a survey that would ask for details of the location, including the type of building, access restrictions and red routes. This information was then fed back to the routing team who could ensure that engineers had all the information and equipment they needed to complete the job successfully.
With ISB’s help, Custom went from attempting to manage its business using multiple disconnected systems, to having complete visibility of its entire enterprise in one, secure platform.
The extensive, bespoke solution we created enabled Custom to dramatically improve their performance in all areas, manage internal KPIs and drive healthy competition within their business.
By replacing lengthy manual processes with paperless, automated tasks, the application increased back-office staff productivity, while engineers in the field were given all the information and equipment needed to complete jobs successfully and ensure customer satisfaction.
The system’s features and the transparency it offered allowed Custom to hire new engineers and rapidly increase the number of jobs it could take on without the need for more back-office staff.
As a result, Custom was named in the Virgin Fast Track 100 league table as one of the fastest growing businesses in the UK twice in four years.
Ultimately, the application proved so effective at helping Custom to drive the success of its business and increase its bottom line that Sky decided to purchase it to manage their own internal operations.