Virgin Active

Virgin Active improve management visibility and simplify print infrastructure with Toshiba Cloud Solutions.

State of the art Health Club chain migrates to Toshiba e-FOLLOW.cloud print management software, providing increased security, enhanced efficiency and data intelligence for management planning.

Virgin Active was founded in Preston, Lancashire in 1998 and now has a chain of health clubs in South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Italy, Australia, Singapore, Thailand and the United Kingdom.

The clubs are supported by a Head Office near St. Paul’s, London, with a team of over 200 staff. The 32 clubs across the UK offer the latest equipment, expert Personal Trainers, a variety of classes, pools, spa facilities, recovery zones, health cafes and nutrition coaching.

Developing the relationship

Toshiba has supported Virgin Active for a number of years, implementing print solutions into their chain of busy UK Health Clubs including their Head Office near St. Paul’s, London. Louise John, European Head of IT Service Delivery, talked about the importance of printing and scanning across the sites, “In clubs, we have a varied range of materials, from marketing collateral to rotas and training guides, much of which needs to be printed with a high-quality finish to give our customers the best representation of our brand and facilities that we offer. We also need reliability and speed, as staff members need to be adaptable to daily changes with the ability to print and scan on-demand. We were very happy with our Toshiba devices; they offer high-quality printed output, fast scanning, are ultra-reliable, and very easy to use.”

Impressed with the functionality and durability of the hardware, and also the responsiveness and approach of the Toshiba team, Louise continued on the relationship, “The Toshiba team has completely taken away the stress from my IT Department. Not only are they flexible, knowledgeable and proactive, but nothing is ever too much trouble, and if we do have any issues they are resolved in a timely manner. So, when we were looking to migrate from our on-premise servers to a cloud-based alternative, we sought the advice of the team on the best solution to meet the business objectives.”

Upgrade for improvement

Toshiba recommended e-FOLLOW.cloud, a cloud print management software that could replace all existing print servers and guarantee the highest level of data security. James Taylor, Business Development Specialist at Toshiba spoke about the recommendation, “Virgin Active had been using print management software at their Head Office for several years, but had not rolled this out at a club level. This had given them a level of visibility on print usage, but not enough granular detail to enable them to implement changes and improvements. So, when their ageing servers had to be replaced, it was the ideal time to migrate the whole infrastructure to a cloud-based solution, enabling them to have a complete picture of what was being printed at each site.”

The Health Club chain had clear objectives with the migration; to improve staff efficiency and ease of printing between sites, to guarantee the highest level of security for client and membership data, to gain valuable insights into what was being printed, and to be able to make management decisions on what materials could next be digitised. This was combined with a very specific deadline due to the end of the Data Centre contract and the annual change freeze for new technology across the Health Club estate.

Migration to the cloud

Following a successful proof of concept at Head Office, Toshiba worked closely with Virgin Active’s IT department for a smooth transition at each site, ensuring that the migration was completed within the tight timescales. Full training was provided at every club, along with guides to support staff throughout the process. With the software implemented for more than 6 months, Virgin Active saw improvements throughout the business. Louise commented on the benefits, “We now have a safe and secure print management platform that is ideally suited to flexible working. Previously, we only had print queues at Head Office, and now staff members can be agile and travel from club to club and print as and when needed. They also have streamlined scanning functionality, with access to their contacts list and a full view of their scanning history. From a reporting perspective, I can see exactly what has been printed and by whom, giving us the intelligence to make business decisions for print reduction and cost savings.”

The additional benefit of the detailed reporting is that it will allow Toshiba to review the existing fleet and make recommendations in terms of type of device and location when the contract is due to be renewed, helping to make further cost savings and improve business efficiency across the estate. Louise concluded on the project, “Toshiba pulled out all the stops to upgrade our print management solution within a very tight schedule. What we now have is a future-proofed, secure platform, which is easy for staff to use and has allowed us to take the next steps into digitisation. The Toshiba team has been professional and accommodating at every stage in the process, and we are very much looking forward to continuing our partnership with our next device refresh.”  

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