International luxury lifestyle retailer, Harvey Nichols, has extended its contract with IT partner Retail Assist to include an out-of-hours Service Desk.
Observes Martin Schofield, Harvey Nichols’ IT & Logistics Director “Our goal was to upgrade our IT support to provide a guaranteed telephone answering service that reflects our stores’ extended opening hours. In selecting an out-of-hours service from Retail Assist, IT can now better support the business and benefit from using a trusted partner.
Britons reputedly have one of the longest working weeks in Europe. The ability to shop early and late on working days (as demonstrated by the growing popularity of Harvey Nichols’ Foodmarkets) adds to the convenience and quality of life. In addition, the retailer’s focus on lifestyle services and products has turned it into a favoured leisure destination for weekend shopping, eating and relaxing.
Retail Assist is providing Harvey Nichols with out-of-hours Service Desk support, based in its Bingham, Nottingham Support Centre. Cover is provided during the early mornings and the early to late evening period during 6 days a week, with a full day of support provided on Sunday.
Calls are directed to Call Analysts trained to immediately act upon major IT issues. A 2nd-line support service is also provided to address more complex EPoS problems.
The support service encompasses both Head Office staff and those working in the retailer’s six stores in the UK and Eire, two stand-alone Restaurants and Warehouse. Support is also provided for some 700 EPoS tills and PCs across these locations.
The contract awarded to Retail Assist builds upon an existing relationship with Harvey Nichols.
Martin Schofield joined the company in 2003, since when he is credited with having contributed to the retailer’s increased competitive advantage and market agility through the fine-tuning of its technical infrastructure and systems.
Amongst his early changes were the acquisition of an IBM iSeries processor and the outsourcing of its hosting, operation and support to Retail Assist two years ago. The iSeries, which drives the retailer’s key functions including stock management and supply chain, is housed at Retail Assist’s Northampton Data centre.
Concludes Retail Assist’s Services Manager, Dave Roberts, who is responsible for the out-of-hours service “We are particularly pleased to see our relationship with Harvey Nichols develop further. Their request for us to provide an out-of-hours Service Desk is testimony to the confidence that the company has in our people and our facilities.”
Harvey Nichols’ estate covers Dublin, Manchester, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Leeds in addition to its flagship Knightsbridge, London store. Its international expansion has seen its stores in Riyadh, Dubai and Hong Kong become landmarks in cities where luxury is a byword. September 2006 marked the opening of its latest store, occupying 8,000 sqm in Istanbul’s Kanyon Levant state-of-the-art shopping mall.