The Jelly Bean Factory is an Irish manufacturing success story, employing 80 people, producing over 14 million jelly beans a day, and exporting to 60 countries. Operating out of a factory and offices in Dublin, the firm has been in business for over 15 years, developing a global brand using natural ingredients to make real fruit-flavoured jelly beans.
Some of the biggest business challenges have come from its success. When the firm became part of a much larger group in 2014, the target was to double production in Ireland and export to new markets. To help facilitate a new phase of growth, Managing Director Richard Cullen wanted to simplify and strengthen communications with a one-stop communications service provider it could rely on.
Mobilising sales and management was seen as imperative, enabling them to stay better connected to the business when the teams were out of the offices & overseas . All the travelling was ramping up roaming costs, so there was pressure to get better rates on overseas calls. With plans to develop an eCommerce side of the business, there was also a need to improve fixed services and broadband in particular.
The Jelly Bean Factory’s first engagement with Three had been with mobile, an experience that was so positive the decision was taken to move everything else – fixed and part of the broadband. One objective was to reduce costs; another was to simplify management with a single provider.
"It had got to the point where we just needed to simplify our communications," says Richard Cullen. "The amount of time spent talking to different account managers from different companies was getting ridiculous so it made sense to consolidate our service providers to Three."
The company has over 20 smartphones and tablets from Three, a mixture of Apple and Android devices, used by the staff traveling between Ireland, UK, continental Europe, Scandinavia, Middle East, USA and beyond.
High quality broadband into the Dublin site was crucial, providing speeds that could support WiFi coverage in the offices, production and warehouse areas. The robust connectivity is also a building block for the company’s plans to develop its online business through The Jelly Bean Factory website.
"We are investing significant sums into IT and eCommerce. We are dependant on telephone conferencing with our corporate offices and factories throughout Europe and our worldwide network of distributors. Three is providing us with very stable services and a solid platform to do it," says Cullen.
Consolidating communication services with Three has saved money on bills, simplified the management of the services, and significantly improved performance.
"We started with mobile from Three and because the service was so impressive we moved all our landline and data services. We haven't had a single failure since," says Richard Cullen. "Moving to Three gave us the simplicity of a one-stop shop and helped us become more cost-effective."
Three has also improved key services in a busy period for the company. Mobile technology has become mission critical with Cullen and his management team frequently travelling for business. “We could be anywhere in the world so we have to have constant contact to the office by way of voice, conference calls and email," he says. "It's extremely important to us that Three have provided all of these services."
The company has also helped The Jelly Bean Factory target new markets with active account managers who are constantly in contact. "It's been great for our international expansion. They would analyse our business, the countries we call a lot and always come back with preferential rates for frequently dialled destinations," says Cullen.
He is also looking to Three to future-proof the communications side of the business. Voice and data are now available to employees anywhere, any time, on smartphones and tablets. The next phase is to look at more powerful voice conferencing options and marketing solutions, doing more through social media.
"The business never stops and we need to be contactable at all times,” says Richard Cullen. “Three makes that possible."
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