The telecommunications industry is fast paced and constantly developing and with retail stores across the North Island, warehouse facilities and multiple commercial office locations housing sales and support teams - there is never a dull moment at Digital Mobile. We spent a day with Group Operations Manager, Vijay Sharma, to find out more about the dynamics of the business, how they use power and what they value in a supplier.
Tell us about Digital Mobile?
Digital Mobile is an exclusive channel partner to Vodafone New Zealand. We operate in the retail, B2B, telesales and online environments; with a mix of Company Owned and Franchise points of presence from Whangarei to Queenstown. This presence is relatively diverse, with Retail Stores across the North Island, Business Hubs throughout the country and an Auckland based Customer Care Centre and Support Office which is home base to around 150 staff. The business was founded 20 years ago and today employs around 500 Kiwi’s, managing close to 40% of Vodafone’s exclusive branded distribution.
What do you love about your business?
Having worked in the business in various capacities for 14 years, I can honestly say that no day is the same. I have seen mobile devices shift from a nice to have, to an essential business tool and part of everyday life. The constantly improving capability of mobile technology still astounds me and there are no signs of this slowing down any time soon.
I love the fact connectivity is at the heart of our business. We are committed to helping customers experience products and services that suit their needs and make technology accessible to them – something I get a kick out of every day.
Who knows where the world of mobility will take us to next, but I love being part of the journey.
You operate across multiple locations, with various business uses. How does power supply impact your business everyday?
In addition to our people, product and services, power is our most essential requirement. You can’t run a technology business without power, it’s as simple as that.
Lighting, POS, live device displays, customer database systems, security, AC, the list goes on for our retail stores and it is just as essential in our warehouse facilities, business hubs and at HQ. Our front line teams couldn’t service our customers and support office couldn’t support the teams. Electricity powers everything we do and we are totally reliant on its continual supply.
What are you looking for from your power supplier?
Value and Service. When something goes wrong we need someone to call and prompt action. Across our business its failure will cost us sales and impact our ability to service our customers so we need a supplier that understands that and works for us to resolve the problem.
With a large number of locations, many operating 7 days a week, value was obviously a big driver for us and we were looking for a provider that understood our business requirements are diverse and recognized that.
We were previously connected via various power suppliers so a move also gave us the opportunity to compare service levels and rates and assess the benefits of consolidating supply.
What has Utilise done for you?
First and foremost they came and saw us. It sounds basic but believe me it was a new experience for us. We had never been visited by a power supplier directly before so they were off to a good start. Utilise, took the time to look at our business, review our usage at a selection of locations with different uses and explain how they could improve on service and cost. Operationally, the process was really easy and convenient. Our Finance Team were happy with the numbers and single billing platform Utilise offered, so there was really no downside for us.
Some businesses fear switching suppliers will be a hassle. What was your experience?
Our experience was great. Utilise did all the of the work with minimal effort from us. The installation of smart meters in locations of our choice has been rewarded with what we learn from them.
Do you have any advice for people considering switching to Utilise.
We are really happy with the switch to Utilise and feel we now have a provider who gets us. The change has been a positive one for our business financially and administratively and we learned a lot about this essential utility in our business.