Lightstream Helps Major Software Provider Achieve Business Growth with AWS Even During Pandemic

Industry:  Technology

Cloud Managed Services Empower MasterControl through Business Optimization, Cost Control and Enhanced Security within AWS

Business Challenge

As a leading provider of Enterprise Quality Management Software (EQMS), MasterControl prides itself on maintaining the highest standards of quality and operational excellence. In fact, the organization’s cloud-based QMS system is titled MasterControl Quality Excellence™. With some of the largest regulatory agencies and life-science companies in the world depending on MasterControl to help them expedite the process of providing people with life-changing products, they can’t afford to leave quality and compliance to chance.

MasterControl is an innovator in the use of cloud technology and started down the path of public cloud with AWS in 2010. They eventually became overwhelmed with the day-to-day contractual management of AWS and sought out a technology provider that could help them streamline processes, fine-tune security and contain costs. They found that partner in Lightstream, an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner that offers a variety of services to assist organizations in assessing, designing and managing their AWS environment.

Over the years, Lightstream has helped MasterControl to find better ways to grow their business with AWS while controlling costs. Lightstream’s assistance with onboarding new accounts and achieving savings discounts has enabled the company to overcome obstacles as they bolstered software development initiatives. AWS and Lightstream supported MasterControl as the company expanded into Europe and Asia Pacific, which expansion was made much faster and more seamless due to the cloud.

As most business leaders know, this magnitude of expansion is almost always accompanied by growing pains. MasterControl’s IT team found that it was being stretched thin and no longer had time or sufficient resources for the ongoing monitoring needed to detect potential cloud security issues. They had to find ways to manage security and reduce cloud spending as they worked to establish a strong global presence. Travis Ruiz, Director of Cloud Services at MasterControl, once again collaborated with long-time partner Lightstream to come up with a solution.

Solution

Lightstream knew that its Cloud Managed Services offering could provide MasterControl with enhanced financial optimization along with the security oversight that is critical in order for the company to prosper even during times of crisis. Cloud Managed Services helps companies to improve the day-to-day administration and management of their cloud infrastructure through a flexible mix of consulting, integration and managed services. Lightstream’s gold level service package identifies changes that must be made in MasterControl’s cloud environment for security, technical and financial optimization. Lightstream then implements the changes necessary to remediate the financial aspects of those optimizations, while MasterControl’s in-house team is able to remediate any security and technical issues Lightstream detects.

Lightstream negotiated an Enterprise Discount Plan (EDP) with AWS on behalf of MasterControl in order to achieve a considerable expense reduction. Cost optimization measures have been amped up with additional savings plans and in-depth reviews and revisions to its Reserved Instances contracts. Extensive tagging features and Lightstream Connect customized reporting were established to help the company save time and gain greater visibility while analyzing expenditures and appropriately allocating costs.

Business Outcomes

Since Lightstream began providing Cloud Managed Services to the company in 2017, MasterControl has been able to meet their stringent budget constraints, even during the worldwide Covid-19 pandemic. Like most organizations, MasterControl faced many challenges in 2020 as customers weren’t as active as they once were, which was negatively impacting the company’s revenue stream.

Financial Optimization

Despite this, they’ve managed to stay on track with the help of an eight percent discount on AWS costs along with additional savings. A dedicated team at Lightstream has ongoing interaction with MasterControl’s executive officers, regularly delivering detailed reports and savings summaries that demonstrate how Lightstream is helping the company reduce expenses.

Enhanced Security

MasterControl’s internal IT team is able to focus on keeping its cloud environment safe and secure with the help of Lightstream’s ongoing monitoring, analysis and reports that give insight into potential technical and security threats and concerns that must be remediated.

Business Growth

While MasterControl’s cloud journey with AWS propelled the company’s international growth, Lightstream has ensured business optimization and significant ROI along the way. Lightstream has helped MasterControl to scale down spending without lowering their high standards for quality, compliance and security. The company has managed not only to remain viable during this tumultuous time, but it’s starting to grow again even in the face of an economic downturn.

As MasterControl continues its steady expansion, Lightstream is unwavering in its promise to add value and foster growth within the AWS cloud environment. Lightstream stands ready to support MasterControl well into the future, with ever-broadening service offerings that can continue to help it succeed in its quest to maintain the highest standards of quality, safety and operational excellence.

What MasterConrol had to say:

“We appreciate that Lightstream goes above and beyond to enrich our AWS cloud environment. Our long-term partnership with them has allowed us to keep customer success and innovation at the core of our operating philosophy without compromising on the cost and efficiency of our cloud infrastructure. We’re on track for continued growth with cloud technology firmly at the center of our product and services map.”

-Travis Ruiz, director of cloud services at MasterControl

5 Reasons Your Contact Center
Should Be in the Cloud

As smart enterprises tap digital technologies to improve their business outcomes, they also have to ensure that customers remain at the forefront of their transformation.

Simple, right?

Today, customers demand almost instantaneous access to information, so your contact center has to be one step ahead.

Paramount to getting ahead is connecting agents with real-time knowledge sources about your products and customers and being able to rapidly respond to customer requests across all channels including web, voice, email, chat and social.

Because in this era of digitization, businesses must be able to connect with digital-savvy customers in a digital manner.

That’s means surpassing customer-service expectations on digital channels or risk losing them to competitors altogether.

For smart businesses, this isn’t an option.

That’s why they’re going all in on moving their customer contact centers to the cloud.

In fact, 62% of organizations already have migrated to a cloud call center solution, according to DMG Consulting, while 46% of the companies that haven’t migrated their call-center service are considering moving to the cloud soon.

Here are 5 reasons your business needs to abandon its legacy on-premise system and begin delivering state-of-the-art customer-care solutions.

1. Accelerated deployment

Since you’re moving the solution to the cloud, there’s no hardware to install or maintain, no need to set up infrastructure or find compatible software typically required for legacy on-premise systems. Let’s face it, dealing with old PBX systems can be more frustrating than trying to put together an IKEA coffee table. Thankfully, setting up cloud-based call center software is usually no more difficult that installing an app on a computer. It’s an out-of-the box solution – no assembly required!

2. Cost savings – Ka-Ching!

Tired of replacing your onsite system every five to 10 years because of aging hardware and obsolete software? It’s time to bring on the cloud. With a cloud-based system, you can forget about account-emptying investments on unneeded servers, storage or pricey software licenses. Instead you will typically work with flat-rate billing for a monthly subscription. Yes, you’ll need to invest in  quality bandwidth to ensure rapid action from your call team, but your overall cloud savings will more than mitigate any needed capital expenditure. With the cloud, you only pay for what you use — nice!

3. Flexibility and scalability

Since you’ll ditch your legacy on-premise system and its chunky hardware requirements, enjoy knowing that your cloud-based contact center has the flexibility to add new phone lines and features as needed to deal with the up-and-down cycles of call volume. Having seasonally high phone traffic is great, but you’ll need additional hard phones and computers with an on-premise solution. When calls slow on a cloud-based solution, you’ll be able to scale down without boxes of costly and unused equipment taking up space in the office closet.

4. Outsourced maintenance = less stress

You’ve called vendors, the Maytag repairman and even asked the office administrator to jiggle some wires in a desperate effort to fix the bug in your on-premise contact-center software. Meanwhile customers are going bye-bye. Sound familiar? By taking to the cloud, you outsource the daily maintenance requirements to just one vendor, allowing you to optimize your internal IT resources and ensuring your customers are on the phone making orders instead of being dropped. That’s a win-win for everyone!

5. Security and compliance

Not many organizations can afford the resources or time to acquire the latest security measures that meet today’s increasingly strict privacy regulations. Maintaining strong physical security across many business locations—each with its own on-premise system—simply is not practical or cost effective.

With a cloud solution, you’ll have access to greater security measures to protect customer information than with traditional premise-based systems. What’s more, with complicated compliance requirements, flexibility to adapt to new regulatory changes with a centralized platform for recording, archiving and deleting calls is key in controlling risks. Cloud technology allows you to significantly lower the cost of adding new features to meet emerging compliance requirements.

Ready to learn more how migrating to a cloud-based contact center can transform your customer care and your business? Then, think about Amazon Connect.

Amazon Connect is a pay-as-you-need, cloud-based contact center that delivers better customer service at a lower price. It includes self-service, CRM integration, Alexa functionality, is scalable and elastic and includes custom reporting on an open platform that is AI-enabled for translation, transcription and sentiment analysis. There are no upfront payments or long-term commitments and because it runs on AWS, there is no infrastructure to manage.

As an Amazon Connect Service Delivery Partner, Lightstream can help you with an end-to-end contact center solution. Through our unique engagement model, we’ll envision, design and help you implement an Amazon Connect solution that’s right for you, including ongoing management and support services to keep your customer care center operating optimally.

 

AWS and Lightstream Whoop It Up at SPIN Chicago

AWS Event

Ever challenged a ping pong professional who used his iPhone as a paddle to a match?

Ever witnessed IT partners battle it out for glory in business casual attire?

That’s what happened in April when Lightstream and AWS got together in SPIN Chicago’s ping pong entertainment venue. AWS’s Central Region Territory and Lightstream, along with Lightstream CEO Jim Cassell, held a meet-and-greet and whooped it up.

AWS Central Territory Vice President Jonathan Leaf was more than happy to take on Lightstream in ping pong as well as strengthen the two organizations’ relationship. The relaxed atmosphere was the perfect way for AWS Territory Reps to learn how Lightstream helps its clients get better value out of their AWS products and services.

AWS Event

Experts in All Things AWS

Lightstream is an APN Advanced Consulting Partner and helps clients assess, design and manage their migrations to AWS. Lightstream’s deep engineering skills and knowledge of AWS products and services means companies turn to Lightstream to help with:

The AWS team was particularly intrigued by Lightstream’s success with AWS Cloud Managed Services. Lightstream offers expert advice coupled with managed services and easy-to-use tools that help organizations manage spend and optimize their AWS environments. The AWS team felt Lightstream’s proven track record of managing cloud spend, helping align IT and finance and enabling elastic cloud growth was a game changer (and in more than just ping pong!).

A Secret Competitive Sauce

One secret sauce in Lightstream’s Cloud Managed Services is Lightstream Connect.

Lightstream Connect solves the visibility problem organizations have into their cloud and telecom services by providing a holistic view into a company’s technology spend and network through a single pane of glass. It securely integrates with carriers, AWS and Lightstream’s service-management platform to consolidate orders, services inventory, usage and analytics into one place.

A Star is Born: Amazon Connect

A key new offering Lightstream supports is Amazon Connect. Lightstream’s recent success in implementing Amazon Connect at Los Angeles based start-up HopSkipDrive demonstrated Lightstream’s understanding not only of AWS and cloud networking but also telephony.

In this case, Lightstream analyzed HopSkipDrive’s call flows and application integration requirements. Lightstream engineered AWS Lambda to automatically retrieve the customer data based on the individual’s phone number and route the customer to the correct agent based on service request and the priority. Lightstream next configured the AWS environment and Amazon Connect with HopSkipDrive’s preferred Interactive Voice Response Solution (IVR), Kustomer. The environment was thoroughly tested, and the existing 1-800 number successfully ported over. The result was not only a smoother and responsive call-center experience, but an instant 50% drop in call-center costs.

Mission Accomplished!

This deep dive into Lightstream’s AWS capabilities and services provided tremendous value for both AWS and Lightstream. Vice President Jonathan Leaf told his team that when clients need additional value around AWS security, AWS Direct Connect, Amazon Connect or AWS Cloud Managed Services, they should hands (and ping-pong paddles) down call Lightstream.