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Case study: 3C Consultants - Microsoft 365


The Organisation 

3C Consultants (3C) is a leading provider of specialist IT and technology consultancy to the social housing sector. The business is national, and its team of consultants work remotely and are spread throughout the UK. 

 

The Business Need 

As a leading provider of ICT consultancy, it is important that 3C can demonstrate that it’s working practices leverage the best technology can offer. 3C’s consultants need to work productively from any location and maintain the highest level of compliance with quality standards. They must have access to data, tools and templates wherever and whenever needed and on a range of devices. As the team can go weeks without seeing each other, there is a need to facilitate team unity and control without staff actually being able to meet. Mobile working is also considerable factor, with consultants needing to work while on the move to client sites.  

The Solution 

Microsoft Office 365 appeared the obvious solution and it became the IT foundation on which the business was founded. Being Cloud based, it is accessible via a web browser from almost any device, ideal for remote and mobile working. There is a suite of applications that provide the business with the productivity, control and collaboration tools required and as licencing can expand and contract easily and swiftly with the needs of the business, it provides a robust, elastic and comprehensive solution to the majority of requirements. 

Initially, the focus was on team communications and SharePoint, enabling consultants to communicate effectively, access information easily, and work on projects collaboratively, co-authoring live documents. However, this only scratched the surface of Office 365’s capabilities.  

Over-time, we transformed working practices, restructuring our SharePoint sites to form a central ‘3C Hub’ intranet site, with links into Microsoft Teams. Indeed, Microsoft Teams is now the primary platform for collaboration, control and communicating for the team. Teams enables our consultants to connect with one another as if, if not better than if they were in an office together. 

Office 365 is continually developing and improving and 3C’s transformational journey adapts to leverage the benefits of new features, leveraging the technology to its full potential, so supporting and encouraging innovation.   

Benefits 

With the successful use of Office 365, 3C has been able to address the majority of business needs: 

  • Collaboration and team working: Facilitating team and project collaboration, including with customers and suppliers when required 
  • Mobile working: Modern systems designed to enhance remote and mobile productivity  
  • Communication: A range of tools, including video, that enhance team spirit and collaborative working  
  • Data management: Cradle to grave document management, recording communication and documentation against the associated customers  
  • Quality: Maintaining standards across the organisation  
  • Data security and governance: Accurate, accessible and secure data providing ‘one version of the truth’  
  • Management information: Supporting and facilitating strategic, staff and resource management - decision by data  
  • Scaling: Supporting growth, with minimal increase in back-office support  
  • Continuity: Should a member of staff become unavailable, there is immediate access to their work in progress  
  • Improved working environment: ICT systems that empower staff and improve well-being  
  • Efficiency: Productivity enhanced, providing access anytime, anywhere from almost any device 
  • Support: Minimal requirement for support and training, with centralised support from Microsoft included in monthly subscription and full audit trail and roll-back if required 
  • Cost: 3C’s ICT costs are amongst the lowest per head of any organisation 

 

Comments 

"Office 365 has been a true enabler for our team, providing a robust and flexible foundation on which we have built the business and providing us with the reassurance that the constant innovation within the suite of productivity tools will keep us at the forefront of workforce productivity” 

Colin Sales   Managing Director, 3C Consultants