23 April, 2012
The Mansfield Group chooses Windows Azure
Rapid business expansion at The Mansfield Group, one of the UK’s largest vehicle breakdown and recovery companies, required new IT investment. Fast delivery and guaranteed availability were paramount. IFS had the right answer with Microsoft’s Windows Azure.
When the phone rings in the Operations Centre at The Mansfield Group, there is a good chance that help will be needed in a hurry. The jobs they attend range from minor breakdowns to major motorway incidents, all of which require fast attention and a reliable service 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. They have contracts with organizations like the Highways Agency, the Police and breakdown membership companies like Green Flag. All have stringent response times, sometimes as little as 20 or 30 minutes. The Mansfield Group relies on their internal processes, systems and tools to deliver a consistently excellent service for all of their customers, large or small.
Once the decision had been made to deploy the IFS 360 Scheduling ‘always optimizing’ Dynamic Scheduling Engine as a key part of their business growth, they needed an ‘always available’ IT environment on which to run it. IFS 360 Scheduling software is available to run on-premise and in the cloud, and is equally at home in either.
The ability to deploy extremely quickly, combined with the reassurance of guaranteed availability, made IFS Cloud an obvious choice. Knowing that all the hardware and software are maintained to incredibly high standards in the Windows Azure ecosystem, plus the ability to scale the environment on-demand to meet business peaks—all without up-front investment—convinced Darrell Mansfield it was the right answer.
“In fact, it was an easy decision,” said Darrell, Chairman of The Mansfield Group, “IFS 360 Scheduling provided us with a running system extremely quickly by using this cloud computing approach. The resilience that is built-in and the fact that it all ran without problems from day one clinched it for us. When we had to decide on the longer-term arrangements at the end of the pilot phase, we had already proven to ourselves that Windows Azure was the right approach.”
“Customers can choose the deployment model that best suits their objectives—the software functionality is identical,” commented Laurent Othacéhé, CEO, IFS 360 Scheduling. “For The Mansfield Group, business continuity and agility are critical and Windows Azure delivers both a secure, reliable environment and the elasticity to react to the seasonal peaks and troughs in their workload.”
Dan Matthews, IFS’s CTO stated, “We see a growing interest in cloud-based applications. As part of our software-plus-services strategy, deployment of specialized, compute-intensive modules like IFS 360 Scheduling into the cloud makes good sense as companies explore the options now available to them.”
Bob Maher, Senior Director within the Global ISV Group at Microsoft added “The need for speed can introduce additional risk to any implementation project. Deploying onto Windows Azure removes risks associated with the IT infrastructure, both during the project and into the production phase. Our partnership with companies like IFS delivers a winning combination of technology and business expertise.”
About the Mansfield GroupSpecialising in vehicle recovery, rescue, storage and repair, The Mansfield Group originates from 1978 where it commenced operations in the village of Biggin, Derbyshire, in the UK and provides all manner of garage services for Car, Commercial and Plant. In 1988 the company relocated to a purpose-built facility in Buxton, Derbyshire with support centres in Ashbourne and Macclesfield. Over the last 10 years, The Mansfield Group have specialised in vehicle recovery, rescue, storage and repair providing services to all the major Motoring Organisations, Police, Council and Government Agencies. Now operating from 11 service centres, covering the North and Midlands, employing nearly 300 staff and operating over 220 specialist vehicles.
About IFS IFS is a public company (OMX STO: IFS) founded in 1983 that develops, supplies, and implements IFS Applications™, a component-based extended ERP suite built on SOA technology. IFS focuses on industries where any of four core processes are strategic: Service & asset management, manufacturing, supply chain and projects. The company has 2,000 customers and is present in approximately 60 countries with 2,800 employees in total. Net revenue in 2011 was SKr 2.6 billion.
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