TCW and Flexential—A partnership of progress
Discover how TCW's strategic partnership with Flexential revolutionized its IT infrastructure, elevating security, efficiency, and growth within the transportation industry.
“Our partnership with Flexential is more than a business transaction; it is a collaborative journey. Flexential doesn’t just provide services; they immerse themselves in understanding our challenges and aspirations.”
Scaling IT infrastructure for enhanced security and efficiency
The growth trajectory of TCW not only demanded an upscaling of IT infrastructure but also called for sophistication and agility in its technological frameworks. As a client of Flexential since 2008, TCW's legacy systems were increasingly misaligned with the contemporary digital landscape, where data analytics and cloud computing are paramount. The intensive labor and time devoted to the upkeep of outdated hardware were detracting from strategic initiatives such as customer service enhancements, market expansion, and innovation in logistics solutions.
Additionally, TCW was confronting challenges in integrating modern logistics software with their existing IT setup, hindering the adoption of AI and machine learning technologies that could drastically improve route optimization and inventory management. The lack of an agile IT infrastructure was creating a ripple effect, leading to reduced operational flexibility and slower response times to market changes.
The ever-present threat of ransomware in the transportation industry became more pronounced for TCW, as their IT system's vulnerabilities could lead to potential breaches, service disruptions, and loss of customer trust. This risk was amplified by the nature of their business, where any downtime could result in significant logistical setbacks and financial losses.
Furthermore, TCW's data handling capabilities were being tested by the increasing demands for transparency and real-time tracking by clients, requiring a robust IT ecosystem capable of supporting large-scale data transactions securely and efficiently.
In essence, TCW's IT infrastructure had reached a critical juncture where the need for an evolutionary leap became imperative to not only maintain but also to enhance their competitive edge and fulfill their primary business goals of delivering exceptional and reliable transportation services.
A comprehensive IT transformation
Flexential approached TCW's challenges with a holistic approach, integrating three core solutions: cloud migration, disaster recovery, and professional IT services, each addressing a specific facet of TCW's challenges in modernizing their IT environment.
Cloud: The Flexential cloud migration plan was not just about moving TCW's existing systems to the cloud. It was a strategic initiative that involved first analyzing TCW's operational workflows, system dependencies, and performance metrics. This ensured that the cloud environment was customized to support TCW's operational demands, including the need for high availability, scalability, and the ability to quickly deploy new services. Flexential facilitated the transfer of TCW's data and applications to a cloud infrastructure that promised not only better security but also more significant cost efficiencies, with a pay-as-you-go model replacing the capital expenditure of maintaining physical hardware.
Disaster Recovery (DR): In the wake of a ransomware incident, Flexential implemented a robust DR strategy that went beyond mere data backup. They conducted a thorough risk assessment and business impact analysis to design a DR plan that ensured TCW's critical operations could continue with minimal downtime in case of a cyberattack. Flexential DR solutions included automated failovers to a secondary location, ensuring TCW's business continuity was maintained. Regular drills and updates ensured the DR plan evolved to meet emerging threats.
Professional Services: Flexential Professional Services played a pivotal role in empowering TCW's team. They provided extensive training on the new cloud and DR systems, enabling TCW's staff to handle day-to-day management and respond to incidents with greater agility. They also helped TCW to develop a comprehensive Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) strategy that leveraged the latest in cloud technology to provide a more resilient and responsive IT environment.
By addressing the specific challenges identified during the analysis phase, Flexential ensured that each solution component was not only solving the current issues but also positioning TCW for future technology adoption and growth.
Operational efficiency and robust security
The strategic alliance between TCW and Flexential has yielded transformative outcomes, catalyzing a leap forward in TCW's operational capabilities and fortifying their security posture. This partnership has not only addressed the immediate IT challenges but has also laid down a resilient and future-proof digital backbone, critical for TCW's progressive growth in the highly competitive transportation sector.
Employee time optimization: TCW could reallocate resources to core business functions, reducing the need for frequent hardware maintenance.
Uptime and reliability: Flexential infrastructure ensured consistent service availability, aligning with TCW's stringent uptime requirements.
Cybersecurity enhancement: The advanced security solutions provided by Flexential, including AlertLogic, fortified TCW’s defenses against cyber threats.
A partnership rooted in shared values
The choice of Flexential by TCW was driven by the shared ethos of trust, commitment, and personal attention. Steve Thompson, Vice President of Information Technology at TCW, underscores this sentiment, stating, "Our partnership with Flexential is more than a business transaction; it is a collaborative journey. Flexential doesn’t just provide services; they immerse themselves in understanding our challenges and aspirations. Their commitment to our success is evident in every interaction, making them an invaluable part of our ongoing journey towards operational excellence and innovation."
Looking ahead, the robust foundation laid by this partnership is set to support TCW's future IT initiatives. The alignment of TCW and Flexential values and goals paves the way for a dynamic and responsive collaboration, essential for navigating the complexities of the transportation industry’s evolving landscape.
Steve Thompson's reflection on this partnership highlights its essence: "In Flexential, we found more than a service provider; we discovered a partner who shares our vision for excellence and innovation. Their role in our growth story goes beyond technology; it's about empowering our people and strengthening our legacy in the transportation sector. This is a relationship built on mutual respect, trust, and a shared commitment to delivering the best to our clients and communities." This case study exemplifies how strategic IT collaborations can propel businesses towards new heights of operational success and resilience.
TCW, established in 1948 and headquartered in the Southeast United States, stands as a testament to sustainable and trustworthy transportation services. As a third-generation, employee-owned company (adopting ESOP in 2019), TCW prides itself on its commitment to safety, service, and innovation. Operating from a dozen terminals, TCW has mastered the art of delivering tailored solutions nationwide, emphasizing a strong family culture and operational success.