S and B EPS Ltd believes the change in its IT and information systems will also benefit customers through improved communication and better delivery times.
The changes were prompted when the Cramlington business recently faced the prospect of renewing costly servers, PCs and software systems. Managing director Darren Smith and his management team decided to take stock and review their approach to IT and management information.
S and B EPS operates two sites – with offices and warehousing on Business Park West, Cramlington and a production facility at Dudley where it manufacturers expanded polystyrene products for the UK building and engineering industries. The company employs 38 people and delivers polystyrene insulation materials around the country.
Gateshead-based technology company Synergi IT was invited to advise on the best way forward for S and B EPS, offering a solution that provided scalability and flexibility while also being cost-effective.
Peter Rising, Microsoft consultant at Synergi IT, said: “We quickly realised that a hybrid cloud-based technology solution would give the business the flexibility it needs to grow and develop.
“Much of the hardware and XP software was nearing end of life. So new Microsoft cloud-based technologies, based on a subscription fees, offered huge savings while providing a new operational flexibility that staff and management had not previously enjoyed.”
Company data has been migrated into the cloud and Office 365 has been installed on more than 12 computers. Changes mean information can now be accessed by the sales team and senior managers from anywhere at any time, saving time, improving the flow of real-time information and removing hassle.
Diane Davison, financial director at S and B EPS, said: “There has also been an immediate impact within the production area. Our production board is vital to the smooth running of the manufacturing process and Synergi have helped automate things.
“We could have a bottle neck with orders before when only one person was able to manage and control. The introduction of Office 365 and SharePoint means more than one person can access and control the production board which has resulted in some immediate efficiency.”
Mrs Davison said that customers will soon be able to sign into private portals to check and monitor stock and delivery notes.
She added: “We are delighted with the changes that Synergi have made to the business – from both a management and production perspective. Changing our IT systems means we now have greater access to better management information and customers also benefit by being able to access and track stock and orders.”