Losing Count: SharePoint 2013 Helps Organize a Growing Workforce

Headquartered in California, an up-and-coming apparel chain with 1200+ employees, found it difficult to manage its ever increasing workforce. Spread across the nation, they have been getting high traction in newer markets of late. To be at the top of their game, they needed a responsive team creating a unified customer experience to have them coming back to their stores. Towards this end, collaboration, and internal communication between teams across locations became a necessity. This saw them adopt SharePoint Server 2013. Apps4Rent was chosen as a partner to implement and manage it for them.

The Situation

An up-and-coming California-based apparel chain has been growing by leaps and bounds; thanks to their innovative clothing lines designed by some of the biggest names in the fashion industry. Mounted on ambition and a fresh round of funding, their plans to increase footfalls saw them hiring an additional 300 employees to its existing workforce of 900.

With 140+ stores dotting 14 cities across the nation, they have made rapid strides in the last six years that they have been in the business. Their growing customer base indicates the company is relevant and in tune with their customers’ expectations.

To continue the momentum and to be at the top of the game, customer satisfaction is a key indicator of the business’s success. A responsive team delivering great, consistent customer experiences across all locations is a business imperative. This became challenging for them. The growing number of internal stakeholders saw the company needing a scalable solution. With decentralized stores spread across locations, operating in an unorganized manner, the company realized they need a common platform where they can track and manage the increasing workforce. Internal communication, collaboration, knowledge transfer, training and timely update & reporting became the need of the hour.

“We wanted to create a centralized platform for internal communication and collaboration amongst the 1200+ strong workforce. A unified customer experience that was consistent with the business ethos we represent – Fashion Forward, Ethics, and Delivery Excellence, was needed. But this was becoming challenging with teams operating across various time zones, catering to diverse customer groups with discernible ethnicity and cultural backgrounds

– AVP, IT, North America


That’s when they had to turn to SharePoint Server 2013. The company hired an external developer to recreate their employee portal using SharePoint Server 2013. For implementation, management and 24×7 support and monitoring of the SharePoint Server site, they chose Apps4Rent – a leading SharePoint hosting and consulting company.

Apps4Rent Takes Stock And Delivers

Apps4Rent is a renowned Microsoft Gold partner for hosting services. With more than 5000 customers using SharePoint hosting services from Apps4Rent, our team of experts knew exactly how to deliver a solution in the quickest possible time.

With dynamic functionalities that a SharePoint site offers, the external developer created a blueprint for the portal in consultation with Apps4Rent SharePoint expert team. Key communication and experiential areas considered were customer feedback, reporting hierarchy, visual merchandise, grievance redressal protocol, real-time interaction, driving weekly/fortnightly/monthly themes, shop floor communication protocol, manifesto to drive business core values, audits, rewards & recognition, and a host of other areas.

Once the blueprint was ready, sophisticated functionalities were added to generate an improved experience. Workflows were created using the SharePoint designer features. Users were facilitated with form-based access, templates for each deliverable got customized, 3rd party applications were installed and finally Apps4Rent integrated all of that at the SharePoint Server site.

Our expertise in SharePoint migration saw them easily migrate all data from the existing portal to the SharePoint Farm solution we proposed. We created a lab server, tested the migration task on staging and ensured the transition was smooth, without disrupting the company’s day-to-day operation.

This ensured that the portal acts as platform to facilitate transparent communication between the employees and the management.

Benefits Post The Sharepoint Farm Installation

Handheld by the regional team leads, team members at each store now receive direct guidance from the central team. The new application built on SharePoint now allows the central team to review each communication areas, along with metadata which captures information of the store, category and so on. If the central team would like to make changes, say change the display, they can easily create a task and assign it back to the regional team and the iteration process continues flawlessly.

Another area where SharePoint helped immensely was setting up an interface through which employees could be provided training. This interface enabled employees to access the online library and Audiovisual (AV) content and learn on the job. This saved the company huge costs because traditionally they would hold monthly training workshops at each location for employees. The content is searchable and reusable too, thus helping new joinees access critical information and knowledge to speed up to shop floor efficiency levels.

SharePoint site functionalities also enable strict monitoring of the workforce in their day-to-day business. This, over a period has led to the desired outcome the company had sought from the SharePoint installation. Today, teams across all locations speak the same language, give out similar solutions, address customer queries with empathy, maintain a uniform in-store visual branding and last but not the least, work on insights using the various customer feedbacks to create a truly rewarding experience for them.

Apps4Rent has been maintaining the SharePoint site for the last 3 years since it got implemented. The site is hosted in SSAE16 certified data centers with 99.99% uptime guarantee. Our disaster management capabilities ensure that the customer’s data is safe, secured and not lost. Our 24×7 SharePoint expert support team attends to their questions and delivers fast solutions. We ensure that the site runs uninterrupted.
This is what the customer has to say –

Apps4Rent’s SharePoint experts are easy to deal with, their ability to think on their feet and give creative solutions to business problems is truly amazing. Our SharePoint implementation has been running smoothly. Their infrastructure management processes are excellent. I think we chose the right partner for a critical business area that was asking for efficient management

– AVP, IT, North America