Hamilton-based Soudal, previously known as Holdfast, has an outstanding reputation for supplying quality technical solutions to the New Zealand building industry. Soudal is owned by Europe’s largest independently owned manufacturer of sealants and adhesives.
Soudal recognised that as a business, they needed to actively embrace and leverage stable information and technology systems in the interest of enabling staff efficiency, remaining competitive and growing profitability.
Soudal’s CEO, Simon Rickman, says, “There was a drive from the business to give our people fit-for-purpose systems to support productivity while maximising our customer experience and satisfaction.”
By reviewing Soudal’s business processes, servers, and systems, there was the opportunity to build on their capabilities and mitigate risk.
“It was important for us to proactively address potential risks such as systems failure and cyber security vulnerabilities”, says Simon.
Simon explains that “Initially, IT Partners were able to provide strategic IT recommendations, a capability that extends beyond our core business locally.”
From here, the project was broken down into key stages, beginning with a review of process documentation. This was followed by the consolidation of servers, which allowed for a stable platform to support the technological advancement.
Software and hardware technology upgrades were then implemented, such as an Office365 migration and workstation replacements. This enabled Soudal’s legacy Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system to be then upgraded.
The IT Partners Virtual CIO (vCIO) capability was evident throughout the ERP project, providing guidance to Soudal and representing Soudal’s interests in project vendor meetings. IT Partners worked closely with both Soudal and the ERP vendor to establish the upgraded solution in Microsoft Azure cloud hosting. The use of Microsoft Azure has provided Soudal with numerous business benefits, including the ability to scale infrastructure capability, higher system availability, and improved security standards.
Simon says, “By breaking the project down into smaller phases, it was well-sequenced and easier to approach.”
With the support of IT Partners, Soudal has made an ongoing commitment to their IT infrastructure, moving on to a review of their Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system.
Careful planning and proactive communication meant that the digital transformation took place without significant disruption or downtime. “Our business can’t run without its systems, meaning we couldn’t afford to experience downtime”, explains Simon.
Simon emphasises the key results, “We now have greater confidence in the stability of our systems, operate on the latest technology platforms and have an array of new capabilities within our IT infrastructure, such as the tools Office365 now give us.”
Through a Managed IT Support agreement, IT Partners now serves as the point-of-call for Soudal’s IT needs. Simon sees the benefit of this partnership at different business levels, “At a strategic level, the IT Partners vCIO service ensures we have the right technological advice to achieve our business goals. And at a day-to-day level, having experts on hand to escalate complex IT issues to is invaluable.”