Global standards: supporting your hybrid workforce with a consistent user experience.
As businesses invest in the technology which will support their workforces in the new hybrid landscape, adopting global standards becomes a near imperative for a seamless integration experience.
Standardisation brings significant benefits to the end user in terms of technology familiarity, giving a consistent user experience at whichever location they choose to work. For IT support teams, technology familiarity means they can offer a more efficient response, and a streamlined approach to procurement and maintenance.
Directly addressing the needs of its multi-national customers, the Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM provides easy access to account management, products and support that are consistent the world over.
Vanessa Freeman, Senior Sales Manager for Global Business at Sharp NEC Display Solutions, explains how the Global Customer Program delivers the level of support and resources that make Sharp/NEC the easiest display solutions manufacturer to do business with.
Vanessa works alongside Filip Cogghe, newly appointed Global Sales Director at Sharp NEC Display Solutions GmbH.
Designed for global enterprises, the Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM safeguards the highest quality and performance standards, whilst bringing control and consistency across their global visual estate. From procurement to deployment to ongoing support, with seamless integration between suppliers, regions, product offerings and warranties, this customer program makes it easy for businesses to manage all their international locations, via a single source.
The benefits of standardisation are compelling.
Now more than ever, as businesses equip themselves for more agile operations, maximising productivity whilst being mindful of employee wellbeing; adopting global standards brings benefits to the end user and to the integrator.
Familiar usage of devices and interfaces at any company location across the world will deliver a consistent user experience meaning meetings will be more productive in a shorter time.
There is less requirement for user training and reduced potential resistance to using the tools and devices. Meeting spaces will be less cluttered, requiring less equipment as equipment manufacturers speak a common language.
Internal IT support is easier to provide, enabling a quicker response rate, whilst fewer spare parts are required on-site meaning budget can be reallocated elsewhere.
Through standardisation, products will be more familiar to installation engineers as well; integration will be simplified through common controls and interfaces meaning less training will be required and costs associated with deployment and support will reduce.
Ultimately, integrators and installers will become more agile, major projects will be completed in shorter timeframes and room remediation will reduce leading to an increase in customer satisfaction and a major competitive advantage for those who embrace the standardisation approach.
Reality demands a ‘Glocal’ approach.
Naturally, cultural and geographical variances dictate a certain flexibility in our approach. We’ve adapted our methodology to have an amenable balance of Global and Local input. One size does not fit all and often regions with local budget control will question or reject HQ standards unless they feel they’ve been part of the decision-making process.
Our “Glocal” approach ensures regional account management and sales support are aligned to central strategy and standards. Working this way empowers regional departments both within Sharp/NEC and our customers, building trust and enhancing working relationships. AV and UC technology is becoming essential in most businesses, and mission critical in some, so a standards framework is vital, but I also believe that allowances need to be made for local variances.
We’ve always had core product ranges that are available across the world, but alongside these we have products which have been deployed to meet certain regional market requirements.
We believe in a consultative approach with our customers; we will review a client’s need or a market’s potential in order to formulate a local product strategy where appropriate.
Our warranty duration and service type has always been in line with, or exceeded, regional market standards, but customers who join our Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM will benefit from a complimentary uplift to 5 years warranty globally and will also be the first to benefit from improved service types as we work to deploy Exchange Service (Advanced Exchange in the US) as a global standard.
Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM in action.
We want to help IT and AV standards teams, many of whom are deployed internationally themselves, to have easy access to account management, products and support that are consistent the world over. The desired outcome is to make doing business with Sharp/NEC as easy as possible for both our channel customers and end users.
We have been told by some of the world’s leading integrators and users that NO ONE does this like we do in our marketplace. Here are just a handful of real-life examples of best practice, demonstrating how Sharp/NEC is able to support its global customers, including tailored solutions to local level challenges.
WPP plc is the world's largest advertising and public relations organisation encompassing many leading agencies such as Ogilvy, Young & Rubicam, GroupM and Kantar. Its services are employed by over half of the Fortune 500 companies in 100 countries.
The Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM was presented to the CTO of WPP to support a global standard for all AV across its entire network, specified by Hoare Lea consultants. Sharp/NEC’s primary systems integration partners are Snelling Business Systems and Telefónica.
Throughout 2019, a global rollout of NEC InfinityBoard® collaboration solutions took place across multiple sites in Europe and the US. Ensuring a seamless user experience, at any location, every NEC InfinityBoard features a standardised OPS build and a customised Quick Launch interface.
NEC provided us with an all-encompassing solution which includes technical support, competitive pricing and a tailored approach. We had a very low rate of issues with NEC products but the peace of mind that we can make one call to one provider makes managing warranty and service easy and convenient. We know we can rely on their products and the brand speaks for itself – quality, innovation and the benchmark for service support and representing value.
Barclays plc is a British multinational investment and financial services company.
One element of an ongoing global deployment required a phased 8 month roll out of 600 NEC large format displays into Barclays’ offices in India, a region typically plagued by poor customer service and long lead times. Supported by Sharp/NEC’s global standards team, a territory which would typically experience a six week turnaround time for service and repair has been shortened to just two days. Designed to address Barclays’ specific needs in this market, a bespoke full-service program ensures there are no delays. Barclays held 1.5% of gold stock to support the phased deployment period plus an additional 1% service stock to support an immediate exchange service.
Facebook has located its European HQ in Dublin providing thousands of employees a modern, state of the art workspace featuring NEC display technology.
Whilst Ireland is proving to be a huge draw for big tech companies, the region can prove troublesome to access quickly with replacement stock due to commercial factors. In order to ensure there are no delays in getting replacement products into Ireland, Sharp/NEC moved service stock into the region to ensure repair or exchange is implemented within 24 to 48 hours.
Similar logistical issues are evident within other regions such as Israel, which impacts a number of Sharp/NEC’s global customers including Facebook, eBay, Google and Intel. Israel is typically a Return to Base warranty service region which is fraught with delays due to customs clearance issues. To combat this, Sharp/NEC moved service stock into the region in order to implement a 48 hour service.
Arup is a world class firm of designers, planners, engineers, architects, consultants and technical specialists, working across every aspect of today’s built environment.
Roy Salfarlie, Collaboration Specialist Digital Technology at Arup explains how the Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM has helped him in the move to global standards.
I have been working with NEC for over 6 years since I was promoted in Arup to drive global standards in our meeting spaces. There are a lot of challenges when you are trying to standardise on AV equipment, but having a manufacturer who truly supports you through this helps enormously.
NEC is one of those manufacturers who takes the time to understand what you are trying to achieve. They introduce Sharp/NEC colleagues and partners around the world to help support your projects and ensure that AV vendors have access to supported pricing, enabling you to complete your projects on time and on budget.
With their commitment, Arup have managed to standardise a number of its offices/regions with NEC products and together we continue to push the NEC displays in regions where price is considered all that matters.
Only world-class channel customers need apply.
It takes commitment, integrity, technical expertise and a global presence to deliver the high-quality experience our end user customers expect from engagement with the Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM. Both Sharp/NEC and its global channel customers provide shared values, ethical business practices, territorial presence, and the highest level of technical expertise.
Through its global channel program, Sharp/NEC maintains close cooperation across its regions, ensuring its AV/IT reseller partners have the communication and support they need to serve their customers. Our strong global ecosystem of partners ensures that our enterprise customers enjoy the high-quality experience they have come to expect. The program comprises partners and customers across the Americas, EMEA, and APAC regions who receive dedicated support from the Sharp/NEC Global Team, access to its global technology portfolio and global pricing.
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Sharp/NEC GLOBAL CUSTOMER PROGRAM