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Konnet Solutions Deploys Passive Networking for Toyo India

By Kartik Sharma on Oct 25, 2011
Executive Summary

Toyo Engineering India needed an end-to-end network infrastructure; the company hired Wipro for doing the active components. For the passive portion, structured cabling, Wipro was an obvious choice, but second thoughts at Toyo meant that Pune Based Konnet Solutions was in with a slim chance. Finally, the SI, though a comparatively smaller player, won the coveted Rs 1 crore deal fighting off competition from bigger SIs. Although it was not a smooth journey, all ended well for this gutsy player.

Case File

Key Parties:
Konnet Solutions; Toyo Engineering India
Location:
Mumbai
Implementation Time:
4 months
Size of Deal:
Rs. 1 Crore
Key Challenges:

To bag the deal fighting off competition from bigger SIs and dealing with the third parties involved in the project.

Key Benefits:

Reference customer

Key Technologies:

Structured Cabling

Post Implementation ROI:

Flawless IT infrastructure for the client

Returns:
Reference Customer
People Involved:

Raju Kondalkar, CEO Konnet Solutions; Milind N. Kotibhaskar, Deputy Division Head- Infotech Centre, Toyo India

Key Components:

Structured Cabling

Client:
Toyo Engineering India
Key Vendor:

Tyco

Key Competition:

Wipro

Implementation Partner:

Tyco

Commitment takes you places. Pune-based Systems Integrators Konnet Solutions would agree – it helped them win a Rs 1 crore deal. A company which is a comparatively smaller player bagged a coveted project fighting off competition from bigger SIs. Although it was not a smooth journey, all ended well for this gutsy player.

Last year, Mumbai-based engineering company Toyo Engineering India decided to develop a Technology centre to meet the IT requirements of more than 1,700 employees. Toyo needed an end-to-end network infrastructure; the company hired Wipro for doing the active components. For the passive portion, structured cabling, Wipro was an obvious choice, but second thoughts at Toyo India meant that Konnet was in with a slim chance.

Battle Royale

Milind N Kotibhaskar, Deputy Division Head, Infotech Centre, Toyo Engineering India says: “As structured cabling was a more laborious job than installing the active components, more attention was expected from the SI. But with Wipro we got the feeling that they might be catering to many organizations simultaneously.” Importantly, Toyo figured that Wipro was in a mood to outsource the structured cabling and that was when the company decided to look elsewhere.

As a lucky breakthrough, a Toyo team member, who had earlier worked with one of Konnet’s clients, recommended them. Toyo added Konnet in the list of probable players along with Wipro and another bigger SI. Konnet managed to make it to the final shortlist with Wipro.

Konnet also went the extra mile to bag the deal. The first step being a POC—the SI took the Toyo team to an existing client to demonstrate its capabilities, and shared contact details of other clients. This helped the SI up to some extent but the most impressive move was to prepare a full raceway cable layout for the client free of cost, that too before bagging the project.

“This gesture of Konnet impressed us. At the beginning of the project, the architect had asked the IT division to submit the cable raceway layout. But Konnet took the initiative and prepared the layout drawings even without the contract. This helped us submit the information to the architect on time. This move meant that Konnet was more bothered about our issues than bigger SIs,” recalls Kotibhaskar.

Raju Kondalkar, CEO, Konnet Solutions, says they were quite confident about Konnet’s capabilities as the company has been rolling out similar implementations for the past decade.

Interestingly, Konnet did not compromise on the price, while negotiating. Says Kondalkar, “We did discount to a certain level and then left it to the customer to take a decision.”

Many Challenges

As the project commenced, Konnet was required to set up a structured cabling network for about 1,700 users across 3 floors of a 60,000 square foot building. The cabling system had to use existing cable ducts, which was a challenge. Konnet also quickly figured out that they had to deal with many other third-parties involved in the project such as the civil contractor, electrical contractor, AHU contractor, and Project Management Consultant.

The civil work posed the major challenge. For laying the raceway, the SI needed the digging work to be completed, but due to manpower shortage the contractor was not able to oblige on time. Instead of complaining, Konnet extended a helping hand to the civil contractor. “We spoke to the customer, took some extra time from him, and arranged two shift working instead of a single shift,” says Kondalkar.

As a result of these delays, the project got extended by a month “The total project duration went up to almost 4 months. But even after this delay Konnet remained patient and completed their work on time, while maintaining quality levels,” says Kotibhaskar.

That was not the end of problems, though. The electrical contractor planned to build a raceway parallel to Konnet’s raceway. “It was a challenge for us to avoid electromagnetic induction between our cables. This again involved the time consuming dialoguing with the electrical contractor on critical points.” says Kondalkar.

There were several interventions from the architect as the raceway layout was prepared by Konnet. “We had to show him the site and discuss the plan. He then gave his approval and also helped us to get the approval from Toyo,” says Kondalkar.

Toyo liked the way that Konnet reported on project progress, and has now recommended this method to its other vendors as well.

Extra Effort

The SI went out of the way to meet the client’s last minute requirements. Initially, single mode fiber cables and end connectors were envisaged for the building. Three days before the office was commissioned, however, it was found that multi-mode fiber was required. Konnet procured the multi mode fiber with speed and did the installation work to meet the project dead line. Normally it would have taken at least two weeks. Says Kotibhaskar, “It is a perfect example of professionalism.”

Konnet not only managed structured cabling but the whole IT infrastructure of the building during the project. Kondalakar says, “No other solution provider was involved because the whole IT infrastructure part was managed by us.”

Toyo had also been given the consultancy for datacenter and fire management. He added, “We have datacenter expertise as well as staffers trained in fire detection, fire suppression and intelligence building management solutions. So, we also provided plans to Toyo on this.”

Konnet has also helped in arranging the warranty certification for the client, along with a one-year free of cost service clause. “Our engineer is there for any small jobs which might crop up.” says Kondalkar. Konnet used the cabling components of Tyco electronics, since it offers 25- year warranty certification. The SI has also prepared the documentation and sent it to Tyco for the certification.

No Disruptions

It was a flawless arrangement now for Toyo. “As soon as the project got finished, we went about our business without any disturbance.” So immaculate was the work Konnet had done that when the user went to the desk and the moment, he logged in he got all the applications the way he wanted. The shifting went on smoothly without wasting any man hours. “The flawless cabling was a big contributor in ensuring this,” observes Kotibhaskar.

Today, Toyo is a satisified client and has given blanket permission to Konnet to use them as a reference as well as a POC to prospective customers. “One prospective customer has almost signed on as a result of the visit to Toyo,” says Kondalkar.

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