Heartland Automotive Services, dba Jiffy Lube, is the largest franchisee of quick lube retail stores in the country based in Irving, TX with 540 locations from coast to coast. The company serves nearly five million customers each year through 3,500 team members. In addition to Jiffy Lube’s signature oil change services, they also provide air conditioning and filtration, alignment, tire, brake, battery maintenance and replacement, and transmission services - plus many more vehicle maintenance services.
In 2012, Heartland Automotive Services was purchased by Sun Capital Partners, a private equity firm with whom Auxis already had an established relationship with. Sun Capital looked to Auxis to help stabilize and transform Heartland’s IT operations by implementing structured processes, metrics and technologies.
Previous to Auxis’ engagement, Heartland’s IT was poorly run and was being operated by a small team who was spread out too thin. They didn’t have the organizational structure and resources to help drive the change necessary to provide a stable infrastructure for the business.
The key challenges the company was facing, included:
- Outdated, inefficient hardware in the data center.
- Frequent and long periods of downtime. Disaster recovery plans were insufficient or non-existent.
- No standard procedures in place. Documentation was scarce, if non-existent. End-user experience was poor due to a lack of quality practices.
- IT team was seen as a very tactical group, not a strategic partner for the business. Most of their time and resources were spent on barely “keeping the lights on”, with very limited focus on innovation and value-added activities.
Heartland was looking for a partner that had the right skills and experience to transform the IT environment, processes and operations, as well as manage and support the IT and end user environment on a 24x7x365 basis.
To help the organization achieve its business and operational goals, Auxis was tasked with the following:
- Cloud migration - To improve employee productivity and lower software licensing costs, Auxis migrated productivity applications to Office 365 hosted on Azure.
- Converged infrastructure - To improve infrastructure operations across network, storage and compute tiers, Auxis deployed Nutanix converged infrastructure in their data centers.
- Governance operations - Auxis assisted the local teams in creating the support processes using the ITIL framework needed to properly manage all the workloads in the data center and in the cloud with a high emphasis on controls and proactive management.
- Network monitoring - Auxis implemented 24x7 network monitoring controls to improve infrastructure and application performance, as well as security.
- Networking improvements - Auxis deployed Cisco firewalls and switches to improve security, as well as automated systems to keep security software up-to-date. A total network redesign was performed in order to improve security, performance and reliability.
- Business applications and OS software - Auxis implemented an automated system to update and patch critical applications to enable better security and application performance. To enable an increasingly mobile workforce, Auxis also implemented remote desktop management services.
- Service desk - Auxis provides 24x7x365 help desk services from its nearshore customer support center in Costa Rica, with a dedicated Service Delivery Manager that works directly with Heartland’s executives and store personnel.
- Reporting and documentation - Auxis provides detailed reports on application and infrastructure performance to the company, as well as documentation to provide measurable insight into overall IT and operations performance levels on a regular basis.
By outsourcing the company’s IT operations to Auxis, Heartland was able to achieve the following benefits:
- ~50% cost reduction: Through Auxis’ cloud transformation strategy, Heartland was able to reduce total cost of ownership in their data center by more than 50%, enabling to eventually move completely away from relying on a physical data center to be 100% in the cloud. At that point, client will realize even more cost savings.
- Increased business focus: With Auxis providing 24x7x365 managed IT services, Heartland has been able to focus on the core business strategy and innovation, while Auxis handles the monitoring, management and support of critical IT infrastructure. Now the IT Department is seen as a true business enabler.
- Improved business continuity: By eliminating infrastructure and application downtime, the company can guarantee that its franchise partners are always up and running to maximize profitability and improve the customer experience.
- Increased productivity: With 24x7x365 access to help desk services in Auxis’ Costa Rican Call Center, tickets can be resolved more quickly and easily, enabling higher workforce productivity. Remote desktop management services also enable an increasingly mobile workforce.
- Business peace of mind: Auxis governance, security and management practices provides the organization the confidence that their data is protected in the event of an attack. Regular reporting and careful documentation ensures also that they are always prepared in the event of an audit.
Here more from Chidi Alams, Head of IT and Information Security at
Heartland Automotive Services