Interflora: Smooth order processing thanks to cloud fax services
Interflora is a flower and bouquet wholesaler with an international delivery network. Rather than fulfill customer orders themselves, Interflora transmits the orders to a florist near the recipient’s location who then assembles and delivers the bouquet. In France, Interflora uses Retarus’ cloud fax services to meet delivery and order challenges all around the year.
Capacity constraints in online ordering service
Since 1993, Interflora has handled all orders by fax. Both, orders from florists and those forwarded from the call center were sent via the company’s fax servers. The introduction of Interflora’s online ordering service led to a significant increase in volume. This increase led to high operating and maintenance costs for the company’s fax servers, and in turn led to major capacity bottlenecks.
Internal fax server infrastructure replaced by cloud fax service
Interflora’s aim was to switch its internal fax server solution to a service provider that was able to smoothly process inbound and outbound orders without any negative impact on availability or the ordering process itself. In addition, Interflora also wanted to reduce its operating costs resulting from deliveries, and needed the solution to be integrated into Interflora’s IT systems – IBM’s AS400/iSeries platform. Interflora reached out to Retarus and its partner Toolmaker, a provider of IBM iSeries solutions, to meet these requirements by implementing a cloud-based fax service.
We send more than a million faxes every year, so we were looking for a service provider who could reliably handle our high fax volumes, even at peak times such as the run-up to Mother’s Day. Retarus met every single one of these requirements.
Marc Ober, IT Director at Interflora France
Large order volumes – peak period leading up to Mother’s Day
Prior to introducing a new fax solution, Interflora was having difficulty sending close to a million faxes a year via its in-house infrastructure. Especially challenging were high volume days, such as Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day, where capacity was a noticeable problem.
Delivery within less than five minutes
Interflora promises swift deliveries in every country that it has a presence. Online orders placed before 10 A.M. are able to be delivered on the same morning. This promise not only requires prompt fax order delivery, but also an immediate response regarding the delivery status so that action can be taken in the event of any problems. Interflora therefore demands Retarus to meet strict service level requirements ensuring an average delivery time of under five minutes for all of its correspondence.
Powerful and transparent processes
Retarus Faxolution for Applications was integrated into Interflora’s Toolmaker DirectFax software, providing users direct access to Retarus’ fax infrastructure. This is possible as DirectFax uses Retarus’ Fax2FTP service to retrieve inbound faxes in TIFF format and pass them on to Interflora’s IBM iSeries application for immediate processing. While Toolmaker handled the necessary changes that had to be made in iSeries and the applications developed by Interflora, Retarus used its vast experience in transactional faxing to ensure that the migration went off without a hitch. As a result, Interflora is now able to send over 110,000 faxes in the days leading up to Mother’s Day, while receiving more than 20,000 orders via Retarus’ fax cloud, without any delay.
Improved performance and faster order processing
Thanks to Retarus’ cloud fax services, Interflora now has a holistic communications solution that provides much needed benefits. With unlimited delivery and receipt capacities, everyday use and order processing became simplified while also cutting costs. Order processing as a whole saw a major boost in speed, while also maintaining maximum transaction security.