TVH: A successful WAN RFP project
Written by Ronald Grunewald (Group IT Infrastructure Manager)
TVH is a global supplier with customers in more than 170 countries and has been split up into 2 business units: TVH Parts Holding and Mateco. TVH Parts Holding offers parts and accessories for material handling, industrial and agricultural equipment all over the world. Mateco carries out 4 activities: Sales, Rental, Service and Trade.
Tam Tam Consulting (TTC) had the pleasure of cooperating on/ undertaking a WAN RFP project for TVH Parts. After the project completion, an interview was conducted with Ronald Grunewald, Group IT Infrastructure Manager at TVH.
Perhaps the TVH-story can inspire you to start a WAN project for your company.
What was the reason for starting a WAN RFP project?
The WAN-contract with the current supplier had already been ongoing for 7 years and was almost coming to an end. At the start of my assignment, we immediately decided to extend the existing contract for an additional 6 months in order to have sufficient time for research into technology changes and possible interesting market evolutions. We also wanted to assess which innovations could support our fast-growing business and whether we still had the right partner for this.
What made you decide to start this project with an external consultant?
We are an IT-infra organisation with 40 people worldwide, but we are not the subject matter experts in this domain. For such an important project you need experts with a clear view on technological trends, innovations and market evolutions combined with real life experience with these kinds of projects.
What were the main reasons for choosing an external consultant?
Relevant experience and maturity in the specific matter is crucial for these types of critical projects; this is the experience TVH will never have in house. Furthermore, a Trusted Partnership and human contact are of great importance. For us “the connection” between the employees of the various companies is also very important.
What made you choose Tam Tam Consulting?
We finally invited three parties for a one-hour introductory meeting. We noticed a big difference in terms of maturity, experience and way of presentation. The focus of Tam Tam Consulting lay on “realising a project together” and this immediately created a good team spirit for us. “The connection” between both companies was there from the start.
How did the project go? At the start, expectations, cooperation, …?
Tam Tam Consulting has exceeded the expectations of the entire global TVH-team. The progression of the project was entirely in line with the initial planning, all responsibilities were fulfilled correctly and the expected workload for TVH was in line with the proposed projections. Tam Tam Consulting has always expressed everything in an independent manner, which is very positive, because this means that TTC leaves the decision with the customer.
Even informally, TTC did not want to give an opinion about preferences, despite our various attempts to do so. We have experienced the guidance as very clear and firm; TTC took control of everything and defended the interests of TVH from the beginning to the end, without exception. It really felt like a partnership from A to Z. For TVH it was a 1+1=3 story, from the start until today.
Why the choice for SD WAN? What are the main advantages of such a network for TVH?
For TVH, business continuity for all sites is crucial; we strive to avoid the impact of potential network outages assuring maximal business continuity, that’s why we have taken this into account in the design of the underlying network. The SD-WAN technology has many important advantages for us: offloading traffic to other lines, performance, visibility and optimal use of the available bandwidth. Via Micro segmentation in the security part, you can isolate parts of the network and thus limit the impact, which is also very important for TVH. Other advantages such as flexibility in upscaling and downscaling were also included in the solution.
If you had to redo the project, what would you do differently?
An absolute certainty is that we would work again with Tam Tam Consulting. In retrospect, TVH has paid too little attention to the KPIs (lead times), we should have foreseen a better definition for all non-operational matters.
What advice can you give companies considering a similar project?
A good preparation is crucial, you have to make enough time for it within the organisation and make sure you get professional assistance from experienced people in this specific domain.
Finally, how would you concisely describe the cooperation with TTC?
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