Company: GordanoCustomer: FerrariSubmitted by: two one communicationsDate: July 2002(USA) Ferrari is a name associated with elegance, style, prestige and cutting edge technology. Ferrari customers expect nothing more than the very best, so its infrastructure must support that high level of customer expectation.
Indeed, it is mission critical.One key part of Ferrari’s infrastructure is its communications between the North American Headquarters located in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey and the 32 dealerships situated from Vermont, Canada to Miami in Florida.When Richard Mok joined Ferrari North America as Information Services Consultant, all electronic communication between the network of dealers was carried by Microsoft Exchange. This demanded individual onsite administration and set up of each machine. This arrangement involved configuring workstations with Microsoft Outlook, Internet Explorer and setting RAS to dial up the central server.
In many cases this involved long distance calls to dial up the server in New Jersey.Dealerships are spread right across North America. The logistics of supporting the remote installation, dialup connections, etc. was not cost effective and represented a heavy burden. As Richard explained, “Two months prior to installing NTMail, the Exchange server crashed.
We had to hire an engineer to solve the problem and the server was down for a day, during which time no dealerships had any access to email. This had a serious impact on our business”.Ferrari took the decision to integrate the Gordano messaging suite with its network to overcome these difficulties. The key requirements were:
- A good backup and recovery system for all email across all dealerships.
- Multiple email accounts (Sales, Service, Technical, Warranty and Parts) as a minimum with no growth constraints.
- Ability to access any email account from any machine at the dealership or anywhere while on the road.
- Reduced online costs by using standard, local Internet Connections
- The reduction of maintenance and support costs for remote systems.
With the introduction of the Gordano Messaging Suite, the need for on-site administration disappeared almost immediately. Now each dealership machine just needs to have an internet connection and a Web browser configured. Nothing more is required and there is no need for local mail administration.Each machine now connects to the GLWebMail interface using a standard Internet connection.
All messages are held on the central server at Englewood Cliffs. This is backed up regularly, thus removing the need for expensive long distance calls to the head office over RAS.The benefits are strikingly obvious to Richard Mok. “Not only do the dealerships save money on their dial up charges but the email is now stored safely in one location with regular backups, thus preventing vital information from being lost.”
Richard discovered that Gordano’s CRM tool-set product, GLCommunicator, also provided some other solutions. Engineers at some of the smaller dealerships often need help to solve problems that they haven’t seen before.
Further, they need to identify particular parts at short notice. GLCommunicator allowed all of the engineers and technicians to discuss new situations and parts requests across all dealerships instead of having to depend upon the staff at HQ in New Jersey.”Our dealerships immediately found the discussion lists beneficial when trying to locate parts or find a particular vehicle for a customer. In fact, I’m sure they now wonder how they managed without it!”System administration now involves nothing more than configuring the machine to be installed in the dealership. The Information Services Consultant in New Jersey can perform mail administration tasks remotely and trouble shoot from anywhere. Richard Mok observed that the number of calls to support has fallen dramatically – by at least 25%.
He explained; “With no RAS connection problems to contend with, most dealerships are able to solve their own problems. Occasionally they need our help in which case we can support them quickly and easily from New Jersey.”Richard is not the only person singing the praises of NTMail. The dealership personnel are delighted because they can also send and receive email from any other PC on the premises with an internet connection.
Supporting the Ferrari Testing Team
To ensure the Ferrari product can perform in the varied climates of North America, Ferrari test engineers put the cars through their paces in the extreme heat of states like Nevada and the cold climate of Colorado.
The benefits of GLWebMail are further enhanced when these Ferrari Engineers from Italy come to the USA. Richard explained “I simply create a GLWebMail account for them on the server, provide them with a user name and password and they can access their email on their Laptops and, more importantly, they can have the interface in Italian. That is a great feature of the product that helps them to become productive immediately.”This ability to access email remotely and in a variety of ways is of great benefit to Testing Engineers working in North America. For example, the racing team can communicate using a laptop with a cell phone modem using HTTP, POP3, IMAP, WAP or imode access as required.This method of communication is shortly to be enhanced by connecting to the GLWebMail mobile interface via Jornadas.
This removes the need to carry a Laptop everywhere. With the addition of a Wireless Modem Card, users have unlimited access to email. Richard explained “I just recently purchased the Compaq Ipaq 3670 PDA with a Sierra Wireless modem card with unlimited usage. You would not believe how well this works. I am browsing the Internet and able to send and receive emails from anywhere. Yesterday I was Central Park and I sent some email to someone at work.
Shortly, Ferrari North America will integrate another famous Italian marque into its retail operation. Maserati, founded in 1913 was purchased by Fiat Auto S.p.A in 1993 and during 1997 Ferrari took full control of the Maserati operation.With the introduction of this new brand, a new domain needs to be created along with additional email accounts for all of the participating dealerships.
NTMail and GLWebMail allow this process to be completed in minutes, with accounts live and accessible immediately.
Ferrari is now at the pinnacle of the Automobile industry with phenomenal success in its Motor Sport operations. It success is based upon high performance, reliability, cutting edge technology and driveablility.These features are also the key to the success of NTMail. When asked, Richard Mok summed up the benefits of the NTMail Messaging Suite by saying “It is flexible, reliable, delivers high performance and is very easy to use.
“The benefits of this approach were proved when the Ferrari dealer in Long Island experienced a lightning strike to its premises. The power surge caused extensive damage and destroyed all computers on the premises. Consequently, no email was accessible. Responding quickly to the crisis, the dealership simply purchased a Laptop computer, connected it to the Internet via the inbuilt modem and were back online within a very short time. No email was lost because the messages were stored on the server in New Jersey, so high standards of customer care were sustained throughout.