About Boxclever

Boxclever is a TV and domestic appliance rental company with a national presence. Headquartered in Bedford, with warehousing and refurbishment based in Wigan, the company is an amalgamation of many well-known brands such as Granada, Radio Rentals, Visionhire, Rumbleows, Redifussion, DVR and DER. Having undergone a number of transformations as a business, Boxclever has an illustrious history which dates back more than 50 years. During this time several customers have remained with the business which is testament to the service and the customer first attitude adopted by the business. Customer service has been key to the company’s success, specialising in providing telephone and on-site support to customers to help them when they have difficulties using their rented items.

In its peak trading period in the 80/90s when a large proportion of UK residents used rental as the main means of obtaining televisions, VCRs, audio visual equipment and white goods, Boxclever was a very large business with more than 500 high street stores, over a thousand staff at the Bedford Head Office and a comprehensive contact centre operation equipped with the very best workforce optimisation and reporting. By 2005 the business had closed all the high street locations and migrated support of all customers to its Bedford call centre.

We were very careful to identify a supplier who we felt confident was adept at contact centre migrations so that we were effectively able to minimise the risk of disruption”

The Challenge

The challenge for Boxclever was adapting to the new business environments and the demands this brought with it. IT investment in infrastructure, and particularly telephony, was limited in the following 7 years after the closure of its high street stores as any change was viewed as complex and the business risk too high.

Head of Central Operations, Dominic Di-Folco said: “Our needs as a business had changed and the scale of our customer service operations had reduced considerably but we were still operating the telephony and contact centre infrastructure that would befit a far larger organisation. Naturally the costs associated with this setup was significant and we needed to adopt a far simpler and economically viable solution. We also needed to gain all the cost efficiencies without losing established functionality”

In 2012, Dominic took the decision to replace its legacy call centre setup which was based on a large-scale Nortel Symposium contact centre / Meridian Option 81 with a modern VOIP solution.

The Solution

Following several meetings with Solar account Director James Hayward, Boxclever selected a Mitel multichannel contact centre utilising intra site VOIP and a reduced number of ISDN trunks.

Dominic Di-Folco commented: “The flexible Mitel solution met our needs well and was very simple to deploy, manage and scale. Furthermore, the extremely straight forward web-based management interface enabled the majority of administration tasks, such as adding users or amending skill sets in the contact centre, to be done in-house. This was a key factor in keeping our running costs to a minimum which reduced our Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).”

Di-Folco went on to add: “We were very careful to identify a supplier who we felt confident was adept at contact centre migrations so that we were effectively able to minimise the risk of disruption to our business. Finally, because of legacy ICT underinvestment resulting in inflexible and hard to support equipment, we were determined to select a future-proof solution with strong service levels and high availability”.

The replacement of two large Option 81 installations with a total of 6u server rack space, not only provided significant space and efficiency savings, it also enabled a seamless migration of services over a single weekend when the head office moved site in 2015

The downsizing and replacement project was very successful and the Mitel solution continued to support the business needs well over the next five years. Advanced contact centre features like customisable reporting and whisper coach facilitated technical product experts with the ability to easily assist Boxclevers’ Customer Care staff in helping customers overcome their difficulties. In 2017 Boxclever wanted to make further enhancements to resilience and further simplify the contact centre.

Dominic Di-folco explains: “By the time 2017 came around and the contract for support ended we wanted to be early adopters of virtualisation and cloud technologies. Due to the future-proof nature of the Mitel Connect software we were able to easily move the on-site solution into the cloud. This gave us greater resilience, reduced costs as we moved to SIP and also gave our business the ability to flex up and down depending on how many users we needed.”

Working With Solar

The fact that Solar are a Mitel UK Platinum partner gave Dominic the confidence to turn to Solar to deliver a solution that would meet his needs. Solar have a solid track record of business transformation and cloud migration projects and so when Dominic sought a Cloud based solution, staying with Solar was the obvious choice.

Boxclever were actually one of the first Mitel cloud customers in the UK thanks to their ability to effectively manage their ICT estate. Adopting the solution ensured it remained capable of supporting the needs of their business, empowering them to offer a best in class customer experience. Some of the key benefits Boxclever experienced as a result of the Cloud solution were;

  • Lowest Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)
  • Minimal risk migration
  • Optimised resilience with fivenines reliability 99.999% uptime
  • Improved disaster recovery capability
  • Simple day to day administration
  • Best in class customer experience
  • Future-proof cloud-first architecture