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Timonium, MD -- September 28th, 2015-- Helion Automotive Technologies, a leading provider of IT solutions for auto dealers, today announced that Mossy Automotive Group has saved over $400,000 since implementing the Managed Service Provider's (MSP) data and network recommendations. The San Diego based 14-store automotive group attributes the majority of its savings to switching data and phone carriers, and upgrading its entire information technology (IT) infrastructure.
Like many auto groups that have grown gradually over the years, Mossy Automotive Group's IT infrastructure was not always a high priority. “We have 1,200 employees using over a thousand PCs,” said John Epps, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Mossy Automotive. "For years we added equipment on an as-needed basis, so our network was a literal hodge-podge of PCs, operating systems, network connections and off-the-shelf software."
In 2013, the auto group was expanding at such a pace that the internal IT staff had problems keeping up with the growing demands. Server crashes, network glitches and carrier issues were contributing to increased system downtime, which started to affect productivity.
"We had too many instances where our network was down for more than a day, which has a huge negative impact on our daily gross," said Epps. "We decided we had to do something."
Mossy Automotive Group's CPA firm referred Epps to Helion Automotive Technologies, a Managed Services Provider (MSP) specializing exclusively in IT for auto dealerships. The first step to upgrading Mossy's IT network was an evaluation of the current infrastructure by Helion's IT consultants. After the assessment, Helion made the following recommendations:
Switch to a New Data Network Provider. Helion switched Mossy Automotive to a new data network carrier that provided 1,000 percent more Internet bandwidth to the dealer group over its fiber optic network, at half the cost of their previous data provider. Additionally, Helion installed separate wireless networks for employees and customers. “Most of our locations had single Internet connections for data, so Helion made sure the new network had built-in redundancies. This means that if one connection at one location fails, another connection will instantly pick up the slack, so there is zero downtime," said Epps.
Helion also identified a risk to Mossy's wireless networks that had gone unnoticed. “They reconfigured our various wireless network access points to establish a barrier between the wireless network we used internally, and the public wi-fi we offer customers," said Epps. "Had we not done that, a hacker could easily have used our public wi-fi to gain access to our private network data."
Switching to a new data carrier while increasing resiliency significantly reduced costs for the Mossy Automotive Group. "Before Helion we were having multiple email server failures that would shut us down for a day or so. There's a definite return by not having those down days," said Epps. "Switching data carriers and consolidating equipment has easily saved us more than $300,000."
Eliminate Unnecessary Equipment. Helion's evaluation identified equipment redundancies that were adding unnecessary cost, such as the group's use of servers. Mossy Automotive had 36 servers, including exchange servers for moving data from store to store and from dealer management systems to OEMs. Helion reduced the server count from 36 to 12, maintaining functionality while eliminating waste.
Additionally, Helion replaced hundreds of outdated PCs with new, faster computers. This has increased employee productivity and contributes to a more secure network, as many employees were still using the Windows XP operating system. Microsoft phased out XP OS in April 2014, so there are no longer security patches or updates available. Using computers with the XP OS greatly increases vulnerability to a cyber attack.
Switch to an IP Phone System. IP-PBX systems are less costly, easier to manage, provide integrated and unified messaging across multiple locations, and are more reliable than traditional PBX systems. Switching carriers has saved Mossy Automotive Group "in the multiple thousands of dollars" according to Epps.
Eliminate Redundant Software Licenses. Helion identified hundreds of redundant equipment licenses, which it renegotiated with Microsoft. "This alone saved us $100,000," said Epps.
Since partnering with Helion, Mossy Automotive Group hasn't looked back. The maintenance of its IT network has become a top priority, but fortunately one they no longer have to worry about.
“Helion's round-the-clock monitoring allows us to maintain our business uptime, which is absolutely essential for any dealership. If systems go down our dealers can’t write repair orders or sell vehicles," said Epps. "Partnering with a MSP has saved us hundreds of thousands of dollars and many headaches, while allowing us to focus on doing what we do best: selling cars."
About Helion Automotive Technologies
Helion...Putting Your Dealership in the FAST LANE! Helion Automotive Technologies is a leading IT solutions provider, providing auto dealers with faster, more efficient networks and secure data protection. From managed services to IT assistance and service desk help, Helion offers both short-term IT fixes and long-term planning so dealers can focus on what matters most: selling more cars. Helion has specialized in IT for more than ten years and works with 650+ auto dealers nationwide. Dealers can request a free assessment of their IT needs at www.heliontechnologies.com.