Hawesko.de left nothing to chance when upgrading their telephone system

Wine, sparkling wine, champagne – there is a high demand for good quality wines among German consumers. And Hanseatische Wein & Sekt Kontor (Hanseatic Wine and Sparkling Wine Branch), or Hawesko for short, have benefited extensively from this trend. Based in Tornesch outside Hamburg, the wine delivery and online shop is Germany’s leading provider of high quality wine and champagne. The chain, Jacques’ Wein-Depot, for example, also belongs to the parent company.

Most of Hawesko’s subsidiary’s sales are generated over the phone, however, making a flawlessly functioning telephone system indispensible. That’s why when their Avaya telephone system and contact center was scheduled for an upgrade at the beginning of 2015, the IT managers entrusted telecommunications and contact center specialists IP Dynamics with the job rather than their previous service provider. Because when it comes to installing and setting up of an Avaya facility as well as the desired georedundant, physical server, operational safety and reliability can’t be left to chance.

The right people for the job

While researching new suppliers to update their Avaya system and perform future maintenance, IT project manager at Hawesko, Stephan Roesgen, came across the specialists IP Dynamics. The Hamburg-based, Avaya Platinum partner boasts excellent references from wellknown companies in various sectors and matched the requirements perfectly.

Installing 500 extensions without disrupting business

The Hawesko communications system is a purely Avaya-based platform. It includes the PBX ACM and the Avaya Contact Center, with the additional functionality of a dialer and integrated CRM system. Altogether Hawesko operates 500 licensed extensions in three locations in Tornesch. The sites house a call center, an administrative building and a warehouse. A total of 350 employees from all divisions plus 100 call center agents depend on the Avaya system, which requires a complete software update every two to three years.

If the update is not installed, services and support can no longer be guaranteed, which could result in a failure of the entire system – unthinkable for a mail order wine shop with the bulk of its sales made by phone. IP Dynamics took on the challenge of this critical business function, venturing into terrain where there is no room for error and meticulous preparation is essential.

A switch over within two hours thanks to meticulous preparation

In the middle of January 2015, Stephan Roesgen and Rainer Geis, head of project management at IP Dynamics and the ones responsible for the smooth transition to the new system at Hawesko had a kickoff meeting with their teams. The operations at Hawesko needed to go off without a hitch, and all the necessary preparations and a project road map outlining time frames had to be drawn up. The challenge wasn’t only to update the PBX with the latest software, but also to install a georedundant Enterprise Survivability Server (ESS) that would automatically take over the telephone system within 10 minutes of a system failure, ensuring that business could continue as usual. On top of that, IP Dynamics also needed to factor in extra components like the Avaya Application Enablement Services (AES), Call Management System, Computer Telephony Integration (CTI) and Hawesko’s own CTI client. All these existing elements needed to interface perfectly with the new, upgraded telecommunications infrastructure.

Without affecting the daily work at the business sites, IP Dynamics put a parallel operating system in place as early as the end of January. In mid-February, following the strict schedule to the letter, the first test was done. And by the beginning of March the entire system had been completely overhauled. After working hours, the stateof-the-art platform was launched – and was up and running within two hours, even though the whole night had been set aside for the job to be on the safe side. Finally, IP Dynamics also updated the documentation, “Something most service providers don’t bother with – much to thedetriment of their clients,” explains project manager Rainer Geis.

The success of the project safeguards Hawesko’s existing telecommunications investments and allowed employees to use all the features of their phones during office hours without any noticeable disruption. „For business reasons, we‘re very sensitive when it comes to our phone system,“ Stephan Roesgen admits frankly. „But IP Dynamics’ professional approach and expertise has won us over. Throughout the project we were secure in the knowledge that our telephone system was in the best of hands.“