The Consultancy has strengthened its claim to be the industry’s number one online specialist by delivering the mammoth Connect integrated digital resource centre for Epwin Window Systems.

The Hartlepool-based business, which is part of the Business Micros Group, mapped and developed what is arguably now the industry’s biggest online portal to give Epwin fabricators and installers access to a vast range of support tools as well as a lead generation mechanism.

It is the company’s most ambitious individual web development project to date and took six months to develop and deliver. Richie Thornton, Director at The Consultancy, says the sheer scale of the project would have overwhelmed many smaller, less experienced providers: “With 6 separate window systems in both PVC-U and aluminium and around 400 fabricators as well as installers to target, it required a vast amount of in-house technical resource.

“It is a bespoke solution for Epwin, but obviously draws on all our experience over the last 10 years of creating online customer support portals for some of the leading names on the industry, albeit this is on a potentially much bigger scale.

“As you’d expect, registered users get access via Connect to all of Epwin’s marketing, technical and commercial support tools and the lead generation mechanism passes both retail and commercial leads to fabricators and installers. There are also links to external providers for finance, insurance backed guarantees and training and rolling discount details on everything from fuel to workwear.

“We’ve added lots of smart innovations on top of that though, such as bringing everything together into a single customer log-in and creating a filter which ensures that the platform automatically recognises fabricators and their linked installers and only provides information on the Epwin systems and brands that they actually buy.”

Part of the added value element of Connect is that it gives users access to The Consultancy’s web design service so that they can work with the team direct to create their own professional looking trade or retail websites. They can also link to the new BM TOUCH software platform which The Consultancy has developed in partnership with the Business Micros programming team for lead generation, quoting and ordering online.

Gerald Allen, Epwin’s Marketing Manager, endorsed The Consultancy saying: “We chose the team because we needed a proven reliable partner with experience in this type of project. We were aware of the upcoming TOUCH platform as well of course and wanted to ensure that both the Portal and Vendor elements of the software were fully integrated into Connect from the outset, alongside all the other fabricator and installer benefits we are offering.”

Richie Thornton added: “What we’ve demonstrated with Connect is that we can successfully manage any size of project and deliver on time and on budget. As a direct result of that, we’re already working on another large-scale centralised portal for one of the industry’s leading trade associations which we think has the potential to be even bigger than this one.”