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White Clarke Group

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Increased operational efficiency, streamlined processes, improved decision-making ability through increased visibility with the Quantum Time Management and Billing system from Support Solutions Technologies (SST), based on Progress OpenEdge.
WHITE CLARKE GROUP

Challenge

Management lacked the information required to make clear, decisive decisions based on staff time

Solution

The Quantum Time Management and Billing system from Support Solutions Technologies (SST), based on Progress OpenEdge

Result

Increased operational efficiency, streamlined processes, improved decision-making ability through increased visibility

Story

White Clarke Group Drives Accountability and Reporting With Quantum Time Management

White Clarke Group (WCG) has significantly improved time-keeping and reporting across its global organisation with the Quantum Time Management and Billing system from Support Solutions Technologies (SST).

The leading provider of end-to-end technology solutions for the automotive and asset finance sectors, WCG completed the global roll-out in April 2013, giving the company a more effective way to capture staff time and allocate it against development projects, thus enhancing transparency, resource utilization and management decision-making. The global roll-out came 12 months after the company's Australian operation implemented the Quantum Service Management system to address its needs for time management, billing and service management.

The Challenge

WCG first went looking to replace and upgrade its time-keeping and service management capability in late 2011. As a software provider, the company’s ability to track and allocate time and resources to client work is essential to its effective project management, client reporting and billing.

The existing software was not providing management enough information to make clear decisive decisions based on staff time. Although WCG UK was planning to roll out a new system within a couple of years, Australia's need was more urgent so the company went to market for a local solution.

The Solution

WCG researched and tested a number of suppliers and short-listed three before choosing the Quantum solution. "We wanted a solution with integrated service management and time-keeping that would provide a higher level of accountability on how staff time was spent while enabling us to improve visibility into our project management and enhance our customer service," said James Guerin, Director, White Clarke Asia Pacific.

"Ease of use, automated billing and the ability to work with the developer to enhance the software over time were also key drivers in our selection of Quantum and SST. The team at SST really understood where we were going and were able to give us valuable insights into how to achieve our goals."

"We also liked the Customer Portal option which will allow our clients to log and update calls, and track the progress of their issues," he said. The Quantum solution is hosted on-site at WCG’s Sydney office, powered by the Progress® OpenEdge® database platform which delivers the highest levels of performance and reliability at a low cost of ownership. WCG now have 250 licenses to facilitate the global roll-out.

The Benefits

WCG Australia implemented Quantum in March 2012 and quickly began reaping the benefits of its sophisticated functionality, increased reliability and enhanced reporting capabilities. "Quantum is an important platform for our business that saves us time and resources. The software enables us to focus more effectively on our core function of software development while allowing us to keep customers better informed on overall project and issue progress. We can now operate more efficiently, have greater visibility into how time is spent across the business and are better equipped to make decisions," said Mr Guerin.

A range of benefits and enhancements have also flowed from SST's willingness to accommodate WCG's various suggestions for new functionality. WCG Business Analyst, Judith Rowles, said the company worked with SST to develop and pilot the invoicing module which is now available to other SST clients.

"The invoicing module allows us to enter time and codes into the system, provides workflow for management approval and then generates invoices for clients based on the data," she said. "We can apply various business rules to ensure that information is entered correctly and on time, and can also access that data for management reporting."

Ms Rowles said the previous method to generate invoices was more manual and very labour intensive but the new system eliminates those issues and is extremely streamlined. "This new capability has saved us substantial time and allows us to see very quickly how we're tracking against budget and where time is being lost or not logged effectively. The enhanced visibility makes it much easier to get information out of the system and we can generate a range of reports or simply drill down into the data as needed to drive our decisions."

Global Rollout

Positive feedback from Australian users led to the UK office assessing Quantum, among other options, for its international time management requirements. This led to a successful rollout in March 2013 of Quantum Time Management to the company's operations in the UK, Austria, Germany, Canada and USA.

All staff now log their time via Quantum, creating an accurate and comprehensive repository of data. "Since we are all using the same system, we have been able to standardize project codes and can more easily compare our performance and share learning's across different projects and territories. Quantum enables us to share resources and allocate time to projects from anywhere in the world, improving our efficiency and maximizing utilization," said Mr Guerin.

Future Plans

SST has already made a range of software modifications to tighten the rules around how WCG staff log their time in Quantum, with additional changes planned to enforce month-end deadline logging and reporting to further improve efficiency and timeliness.

Ms Rowles said the Australian operation is still planning to implement the Customer Portal to improve information access for clients and is working through a series of modifications to streamline processes and increase the level of control.

"We want the ability to decide what information different people can see and to have it be a simple enough process to run it across the entire Group," she explained. "The customer portal will reduce internal administration costs by giving our customers the ability to log in and update details, make requests and track the status of their incidents at any time."

"We've found SST very responsive and supportive. They've taken on the vast majority of our requests and are always willing to discuss our changing needs and explore how best to meet them," said Ms Rowles.

"I would absolutely recommend SST and the Quantum product. They operate as true partners and are a pleasure to work with; SST's on-going enhancements are delivering real efficiencies for our business," said Mr Guerin.

SST's CEO, Paul Johnson, said the company is committed to exceeding the expectations of its customers.

"We are delighted with the success of the WCG implementation and welcome their positive endorsement both of the Quantum solution and of our support and development services. We look forward to continuing a successful partnership with WCG to further enhance our software to meet their needs now and into the future," he said.

About White Clarke Group

White Clarke Group (www.whiteclarkegroup.com) is the market leader in end-to-end solutions to the automotive finance sector. The group serves the captive, non-captive, dealer, and fleet management communities, including wholesale (floor planning) finance. They are also a major player in the asset finance and commercial union sectors.

With industry-recognized expertise, through leadership and a global presence, coupled with a proven, cost- effective implementation track record, WCG is the number one choice for both small finance companies and large blue chip organizations.

About Support Solutions Technologies

Support Solutions Technologies (www.support.com.au) is a developer and supplier of Quantum, an easy-to-use and affordable cloud-based Service Management solution that reduces operational inefficiencies, improves service levels, and identifies hidden costs in delivering and meeting service obligations across all areas of your business.

Established in 1991, SST provides practical service management solutions to a wide variety of businesses in Australia and internationally, from large government departments to small business IT help desks. The company has been a Progress Application Partner since inception and uses the Progress OpenEdge platform to develop and drive its software solutions.

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