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Background

The serviced office sector in London is booming. In 2015, it grew 10% in the most popular areas of the city, and now comprises 30% of the total UK market (according to the Instant Group’s 2015 Serviced Offices Review report). State of the art serviced office company, Circle Offices Ltd has offered fully serviced office space in Longcroft house, Bishopsgate, London since 2007. Today Circle Offices’s Longcroft House Business Centre consists of 75 fully serviced office suites which accommodate some 244 clients across a range of industries from engineering, design to psychology. More than ever, it is experiencing growing demand from entrepreneurs, start-ups, and SMEs looking for a flexible, reliable and simple ‘plug and play’ office experience that can seamlessly scale with their business.

Circle Offices operates in dynamic environment where competition is stiff and providers are continually looking for ways to differentiate their product in order to gain competitive advantage. Circle Offices Ltd completed a £1.8 million refurbishment in 2013 including the installation of a high speed elevator, fully glazed reception, updated courtyard, communal areas and kitchens. An important part of the project was a review of its business technology, primarily broadband – something that Circle Offices Ltd believes is a major factor in attracting and retaining new clients.

Solution

On opening, Longcroft House Business Centre had a 100Mb connection installed by M247, providing low cost, reliable connectivity to all clients. On this connection, each client was provided with a private network (VLAN), and M247 could quickly tailor other broadband configurations to meet individual set-up requirements, such as connected servers, Nat, IP routing, Wi-Fi and IP telephony services. M247 also provided support services to re-configure connections to accommodate new starters or services, or scale up or down in line with changes in client demand. This meant that Circle Offices Ltd could provide its clients with flexibility not just when they moved in, but throughout their tenancy at the property, depending on their business demands.

With more customers requiring uninterrupted high speed connectivity, Circle Offices Ltd considered their broadband options, and talked to M247 about the possibilities of upgrading their current service. Two new separate one gigabit lines were installed in Longcroft House Business Centre, providing failover and uninterrupted service as well as more bandwidth opportunities to cope with increasing network pressures.

As cost is always a consideration, Circle Offices Ltd reviewed other service provider offerings, but decided to continue its relationship with M247, because of M247’s exceptional service and reliability. M247 quickly upgraded the 100Mb line to a superfast gigabit connection and installed a second gigabit line, which would provide immediate backup should any problems arise with the primary line.

Hana King, Managing Director at Circle Offices Ltd comments; “M247 understands how critical their service is to our clients – our customers simply can’t function without a phone or the internet, and get frustrated if there was ever poor connectivity. Superfast gigabit broadband provides ample, reliable bandwidth for all of our clients. The failover line is a safety net which ensures there will always be availability no matter what happens. This is the level of reassurance we are able to pass onto our clients. The cost of the upgrade was fractional and the new line provides a superior, fast, uninterrupted connection for all of our clients.”

Benefits

The superfast gigabit lines directly contribute to a reduction of Circle Offices Ltd costs both in terms of resources and time. King explains: “The M247 connection and its service teams are so reliable that our staff can be very hands off when it comes to broadband provision or technical issues, leaving them to focus on customer care and the other activities that are critical to our clients. M247’s ability to respond promptly and provide fast problem recovery is also crucial in meeting our clients’ expectations. This in turn helps drive client retention and loyalty – all contributing to our overall brand and reputation.”

Circle Offices Ltd relies on M247’s exceptional customer service, which ensures engineers respond within just a few minutes of a call. King continues; “M247 is based in London and puts a great deal of emphasis on customer service, so we know we can rely on them to be here when we need them, and they’re able to quickly address reconfiguration and other client requests. When a major fault occurred a few years ago, one of the engineers cycled in on a Sunday to rectify the problem before the Circle Office opened again on a Monday”.

Circle Offices Ltd needed to strike a balance, offering the best facilities, the best technology and most reliable connectivity while keeping costs to a minimum. With M247 Circle Offices has achieved this. It has also future-proofed the business because the two gigabit connections are currently ample bandwidth for its 244 clients. Now M247 offers 10Gb connectivity too, so Circle can quickly upgrade if and when the need arises.

M247 is currently supporting a new communal area Wi-Fi project at Longcroft House Business Centre. This will introduce public hotspots in the communal areas of the building, further improving services to its clients, with a plan to connect the whole building in a foreseeable future.

King, concludes; “Supplying excellent service is of utmost importance. We depend on companies like M247 to provide the infrastructure our clients need to build thriving businesses. Gigabit connectivity is becoming a must as companies rely more and more on the internet and as they move more of their businesses online with cloud computing, video conferencing and IP telephony.”