It’s 2020; the COVID-19 pandemic surges and then bam! Everything shuts down to limit the spread of the virus through in-person interactions. Businesses were forced into rethinking their strategies due to social distancing and reduced physical contact, ultimately shifting to online services and online shopping. Many retailers have adopted contactless payment methods, while others have implemented extra measures to ensure the safety and hygiene of their stores.
Halfords, provider of motoring and cycling products and services in the U.K., changed its focus and experienced a significant increase in online sales. They also implemented contactless methods like click-and-collect in their parking lots.
As a result of the pandemic, some shopping habits have become permanent, and Halfords needs a flexible and scalable IT infrastructure to meet the evolving needs of their customers. Enter Juniper.
Halfords is investing in its digital transformation efforts, and Juniper's AI-driven wired and wireless access solutions are an integral part of that. Juniper's Mist AI, for example, provides network visibility and analytics, a virtual network assistant, Wi-Fi assurance and security features using machine learning (ML) and other AI technologies.
The Juniper AI-driven network provides Halfords with an agile digital foundation to support its growth and operational efficiency while delivering a more consistent and convenient customer experience across all its channels.
“The network is a utility. It is a big part of our digital transformation journey, and we needed a very intelligent, secure network with next-generation capabilities,” said Neil Holden, Chief Information Officer, Halfords. "The ease of operations and self-healing capabilities of Juniper’s technology, along with the user experience metrics it delivers for Halfords, are outstanding.”
The new network customizes communications for Halfords Motoring Club members when they visit the store, providing personalized offers and deals. Furthermore, it equips Halfords' employees with detailed product information (such as child seats, cycle racks and roof racks), enabling them to have informed conversations with customers and sell with greater confidence.
According to Juniper, Halfords has reduced network-related trouble tickets by an incredible 100%, and uptime has improved by 35% in the locations where the solution has been deployed.
“Halfords has invested in Juniper’s AI solutions to build a more detailed picture of its customers to keep up with changing consumer behavior,” said Gos Hein van de Wouw, Vice President, Enterprise, EMEA, Juniper. “Mist AI helps Halfords optimize user experiences and simplify IT operations with automated network assurance and the proactive problem detection and resolution.”
Halfords selecting Juniper is an example of how businesses can leverage AI-driven technology to streamline operations and enhance the customer experience. The technology is currently deployed in Halfords' stores, garages and offices.
Edited by Alex Passett