Paul van der Zee, IT-manager Carglass
Industry: Industrial Goods & Services
Carglass, experts in car damage repair, is committed to delivering fast, efficient and competitively-priced services. Advanced business applications, including for planning and pricing, play a crucial role in their ambitions. Systems integrator Cegeka works in close cooperation with Carglass on the integration and further development of various apps.
"To respond quickly to changing market demand, our services need to be fine-tuned continuously,’ says Paul van der Zee, IT manager at Carglass’s head office in Eindhoven. ‘That is why we are evaluating a number of applications in the context of their role within our IT landscape. We aim to simplify this landscape and reduce the number of applications."
‘Cegeka is an expert system integrator and has been advising us on a new, faster application architecture along with application consolidation. Cegeka also plays an important role when it comes to linking our web portals and ERP system. Together, we’re working towards a simplification of our application landscape, step by step.’
‘Thanks to the integration and further development of our applications by Cegeka, we have already started working much more efficiently,’ Van der Zee continues. ‘Our mechanics can schedule and perform their services better, and our marketing department can determine prices independently. Cooperation with our business partners, such as insurance companies, leasing companies and the European Distribution Center in Hasselt (Belgium), has also improved considerably. In addition, we have been able to reduce costs, especially because we can purchase so many products “as a service”, including software, platforms and infrastructure.’
‘At Carglass we have a clear vision on IT. We are cost-efficient and once we decide on an innovation, we immediately phase out old technology. We are increasingly using successful initiatives from our parent organization BELRON, or standard applications or platforms from the various Cegeka competence centres. We want to think out of the box by making optimal use of standard applications. Within these frameworks, we benefit from Cegeka’s added value every day. This is mainly thanks to their knowledge of our business and the way we work together.’
‘One reason why things often go wrong between customers and vendors,’ Van der Zee explains, ‘is that they are insufficiently aware of their own role. At Carglass we know that we are not an IT company. We specialize in window and car damage repair. That’s why we keep our own IT department small and focus on process knowledge and management. We deliberately outsource the technical IT role to Cegeka. A company can only keep its IT department small if both parties trust each other. That is what we have done and so far, our cooperation has been excellent. Over the years, Cegeka's account managers and technicians have accumulated a wealth of knowledge about our company and our processes.’
‘Cegeka knows our company inside out. We have weekly Skype meetings and we regularly meet in person to discuss our strategy. All of our conversations are very open and sincere. It is not only about what we want; it works in both directions. We put our challenges on the table, and Cegeka thinks proactively with us and points out opportunities and possibilities. And they don’t just think about technology. They are also involved in optimizing services and improving customer conversion. Thanks to these sessions, we decided to switch from data centres to the Microsoft Azure cloud, for example. Cegeka also came up with valuable ideas for the simplification of our Pricing Module.’
‘The great thing about Cegeka is that you don’t only do business with the office in Veenendaal, but that you can benefit from the diversity of the entire Cegeka Group. We recently paid a joint visit to Cegeka’s Nearshore Centre in Romania, where part of the work is done for us. All the necessary knowledge and qualifications are available at the various locations. This makes Cegeka a serious partner for us. A partner who we can talk to directly at various levels. There are no intermediate layers that hamper communication.’
‘Ultimately, as a company you want to meet your objectives within a certain period of time. How exactly you achieve these objectives does not matter. If you have regular meetings as business partners, and share a lot with each other, this gives you more time as a customer for other, more important, things. If you know and understand each other, your vendor will automatically come up with the right proposals and solutions. And that's exactly the relationship we have with Cegeka.’
"Thanks to the integration and further development of our applications by Cegeka, we have already started working much more efficiently"