The Building Maintenance Company was established by David Ridley in 1988 as an independent company to provide commerce, industry and the public sector with a maintenance service it could rely on twenty four hours a day, 365 days a year. With strong original principles of excellence and efficiency the company quickly became recognised as being an effective service provider and built a loyal customer base. To help the company grow they needed a software product, designed for building maintenance companies to help reduce the cost of delivering their service whilst increasing efficiency and improving the visibility of costs and fees.
The Building Maintenance Company already had an existing system that they had hoped would improve the efficiency of their business and help them to grow. Unfortunately, this system had originally been designed for the insurance market and could not handle their day to day tasks in an efficient and easy to use fashion. Their system was expensive to purchase, costly to maintain and did not provide the efficiency and accuracy required to control the flow of costs and invoices being generated. Often the old system would take many minutes before loading screens and even then, some data was seen as unreliable by staff. As so often happens, this lack of faith in the system led to staff starting to implement processes outside the system, losing any benefits from having implemented a centralised system. To make matters worse, they also found that the package they were using had to be re-written and adapted to their ever changing business, thus costing them more money and time. In some cases, it turned out to be more cost-effective to adapt their business to fit the system rather than adapting the system to suit their business. The management of the business knew exactly what they wanted which was:
Before coming across GreyRidge, The Building Maintenance Company had investigated a number of other “boxed” products which claimed to be built for the building maintenance sector. As with their existing system, they found that these boxed systems did not adequately reflect how their business processes worked, and the software companies expected them to modify their processes to fit the system rather than vice-versa. When Charlotte Ridley, Company Director of The Building Maintenance Company, called GreyRidge Software to find out more. GreyRidge immediately sent one of their analysts to the company to understand the core processes underlying their business. Charlotte found that unlike the boxed system, a system could be built from scratch around their business, tailoring the software to their every need. Once the analyst understood their requirements, the basic scope was documented and signed off by the client, the requirements were turned in to a plan for modifying the software and a quote was produced. Charlotte was pleased to find that the quote was lower than any of the “boxed” products that she had looked at! GreyRidge Software were clear that The Building Maintenance Company would have feedback and visibility of the development process, with the ability to make any minor modifications they wished within the overall scope without additional charge.
Within a week of the development process beginning, a demo system was provided to the Building Maintenance Company to allow them to provide input into the development process. As each section of the project was completed, feedback was sought from The Building Maintenance Company before it was signed off. The developers of the system worked in concert with the end users of each section of the system, ensuring that each section was tailor made for their needs. By eliminating all but the functionality The Building Maintenance Company required, the system was designed from day one to be a lot simpler and more user-friendly than their old one so that all members of staff could cope and use the system on a daily basis. The involvement of end users from day one led to a feeling of engagement in the process for all members of the company, and reduced the amount of training required when the system went live, since they already felt they “knew” the system. The completed system was designed to facilitate each of the Building Maintenance Company’s business processes and was signed off and finished after just 4 weeks. Finally GreyRidge sent one of the development team who had worked on the product to train the entire company so that they were proficient in every area of the system. As with any major software transition, there were a few teething troubles when changing to the new system, due to the differences in the ways the two systems worked and it was here that the differences between GreyRidge and their old supplier really started to show. As an example, when the accounts department struggled to get used to the new process of integrating the system with their accounting system (Sage Line 100), GreyRidge immediately sent round one of their analysts. By sitting with the accounts team for just a few hours during the month end invoicing run, GreyRidge were able to provide suggestions for streamlining the process, train the end users in easier ways to perform existing processes and make minor adjustments to the system to make it better match The Building Maintenance Company’s needs – all at no extra cost to them. Charlotte now understands what GreyRidge can bring:“When we needed help with an accounting package, the GreyRidge team helped us without question, we now feel that we have a true technology partner who cares about what we are trying to achieve. In business terms, this means that we can potentially provide a better service for our customers, with fewer employees than ever; thus keeping our overheads down and giving us more time and money to drive our business forward.”
The Building Maintenance Company needed a system that provided job and labour management, cost analysis and effective invoicing, for their business to run smoothly. GreyRidge Bespoke helped them with each of these elements as well as ensuring that day to day activities could be done quickly and simply. With regard to the accounting problems The Building Maintenance Company had been experiencing, the new system eliminated all the manual entry required in the previous system, saving them hours per week that they could spend expanding their company. It also integrated easily with their accounting package, something they had never got running smoothly with their old system. The Building Maintenance Company chose GreyRidge for several reasons. Firstly Charlotte was attracted by the price. After going live with the new system she said: “I can’t believe the value for money that we got from GreyRidge. The new system was priced at a fraction of the cost of the old system and yet has delivered exactly what we need and we have none of the system problems that we used to have. Data is accurate and the speed of the system is perfect” Secondly, she was extremely impressed with the open and collaborative way that GreyRidge worked with them to develop a system tailored to their business, ensuring that they have regular and open communication between the two companies. As she says “We will be working with GreyRidge for years to come; nothing is too much trouble. GreyRidge show us the way and guide us through any changes that we wish to make as our business develops”
The Building Maintenance Company saved time and money as their invoicing was done properly and professionally. The accounts team could analyse and track past and future invoices easily and have been able to quickly, easily and cost-effectively add new features to system as their business developed. They now feel they have found a software provider who helps their business develop rather than hindering it With the help from the new system, The Building Maintenance Company can continue to expand and manage their existing clients such as; Toys r Us, Blockbuster, Next and CBS, while also continually expanding their business, gaining new clients easily and maintaining them in a professional, organised manner. “I can wholeheartedly recommend GreyRidge; great value for money and a new system perfect for our growing business”.