Case Study | Colbea

Dec 10, 2019

“Zen demonstrated a high level of customer orientation and commitment to solving problems, and they were willing to put their money into the solution… We felt we were dealing with someone who was a supporter, which is different to merely being a supplier.”

Bob Baggalley, Chief Executive

“We have more than 60 different suppliers providing products and services to the agency and you quickly discover that there’s a huge spectrum of ways of doing business.

“Zen’s attitude is distinctive because they have an ethical approach, to such an extent that I am convinced it is their priority to provide the best possible system and service to solve the challenges we face in our business. I think that comes first, ahead of doing what might suit other businesses.”

Bob Baggalley, CEO of Colbea first encountered Zen as a startup business seeking advice, it was only later that he discovered they could provide exactly the support the agency needed to solve a problem with its one of its business centres

In designing the centre Colbea had chosen to give businesses the freedom to arrange their own telecoms, rather than to provide a central system. Consequently an array of different suppliers’ grey boxes, cabling and terms and conditions littered the environment creating confusion in the system as well as in the management of the centre.

“We felt we had to sort out the technical challenges and also to rebuild our relationship with tenants,” there are 35 businesses in the centre who probably at that time faced more issues than was reasonable. “In hindsight it may have been better to install a centrally managed system, but the management overhead did not seem to justify it at the time.”

In an unusual proposal, Zen offered to invest in installing a complete new 3CX telephone system and provide ongoing management. “It was not only a creative, but a highly attractive solution to our problems.”

“It was definitely risky as a supplier to invest money in a client’s infrastructure without much guarantee of long term business, admits James Howard-Dobson, of Zen Systems, “But it paid off as we subsequently signed a five-year contract for ongoing installations and management, where tenants contract directly with Zen.”

“James and his team manage the complete offer to tenants,” explains Bob, “and I can confidently say that we have a good supplier whose creativity in designing the system is matched by its willingness to help and its rapid resolution of issues – exactly the kind of support we and our fledgling business tenants need.”

Solution technical details

  • Cisco Meraki
  • 3CX
  • VDC – Virtual Servers
  • Managed Wifi
  • Connectivity
  • SIP Trunks

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