"Claremont is a breath of fresh air. Through their processes and ‘can do’ ethos they have delivered support environments that are of such a high quality and up-to date – overnight in some cases – that enables us to be much more efficient in diagnosing and resolving issues. This has meant that the Trust can now start to do CRM rather than just talk about its systems."
EBS Programme Director, National Trust
The National Trust (NT) uses Oracle E-Business as their CRM System in order to manage the transactions with their members.
The National Trust is a conservation charity established in 1894 to preserve and protect countryside and buildings of significance in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. A well-respected British institution, it has grown to become one of the UK’s largest charities and Europe’s largest conservation organisation. With over 4 million members it is already the UK’s largest membership organisation but has a vision to grow to 5 million members by 2020.
The National Trust implemented Oracle E-Business Release 12 in 2009 as their CRM System in order to manage the transactions with their supporters. The solution consists of a number of Finance, Supply Chain and CRM modules. This is a large (3.5TB) and extended solution that is used across a number of sites.
THE BUSINESS CHALLENGE
Over a period of time, a support backlog of Incidents, Problems and Changes had developed on the CRM system which needed to be addressed as a one-off exercise.
Looking to the long-term future, the National Trust undertook a formal procurement process in order to select a new partner for the delivery of DBA & Hosting for the CRM System. It was key that the Trust found a reliable, trusted and long-term business partner that could dovetail effectively with the in-house team to provide a high quality and comprehensive support solution.
Claremont provided a blended team of highly experienced functional and technical resources to help clear the support backlog. New tools were created to aid the diagnosis and resolution of Incidents. Effective Problem Management was used to identify and resolve underlying issues. Key changes were made to improve the system’s usability and functionality.
Claremont was also awarded the contract to provide DBA & Hosting services for the CRM System over a 5 year period, and was selected over a number of Tier 1 Systems Integrators in the procurement process, in particular for its flexible and agile approach to solving problems and delivering business goals for the Trust. Key to the selection process was that Claremont is an organisation that fundamentally understands Oracle solutions and delivers a first- class service to its customers.
A low risk migration process was created to move the CRM System to Claremont hosting, which was completed on time and to budget
During the migration the system was moved from 32-bit to 64-bit installed on an Oracle Virtualisation platform, various components of the technology stack were upgraded including an upgrade of the database to 11g and content management solution to Oracle Web Centre 11g, and the overall architecture simplified.
Claremont provide hosting as a service, owning and delivering hardware, operating system and DBA support to satisfy the Trust’s business requirements. The CRM System is hosted at purpose built, state of the art data centres with full geographic and infrastructure separation between live, and the DR plus development systems.
Proactive support helps minimise issues and maintains a secure and up-to-date system that meets the Trust’s requirements for availability and performance. The support service is backed by meaningful SLAs, including guaranteed fix times. By only using experienced ITIL-trained Oracle consultants dedicated to the Managed Services role, we reduce the number of system issues and quickly fix those that do occur.
THE BUSINESS BENEFITS
The National Trust have realised the following business benefits in engaging Claremont as their Managed Services Provider:
- The new CRM System architecture is future proofed in that it is robust and scalable for the next 5 years.
- System performance has been improved on the new architecture, providing more efficient business processes. An example of this is that direct debits can now be processed automatically in larger batches and in shorter timeframes.
- Oracle licence costs have been reduced as a result of a review and subsequent implementation of Oracle Virtual Server technologies and the removal of Oracle RAC, whilst providing improved high-availability and performance.
- A reliable and efficient Disaster Recovery solution is now in place to safeguard continuity of service.
- Support efficiencies have been realised through the implementation of ITIL best practice processes and general Oracle best practice. For example, environment clone times have reduced from over a month to less than a day, making support of the solution much easier.
- The solution is PCI and DPA compliant, providing peace of mind that the data is secure.
- The solution is now cheaper to maintain than previously, whilst maintaining a high quality of service.