Del Grande Dealer Group (DGDG) is the largest family-owned Automotive Group in the Bay Area. Since technology has taken over the automotive industry, the Del Grande Dealer Group team has taken pride in using innovative technologies to streamline their operations, grow their business, stay on top of equipment, stay ahead of their competition and provide customers the best service possible.
Del Grande Dealer Group initially had one person to handle technology and handle difficult situations as needed, but it became too much of a responsibility for one person to handle effectively. When they needed to switch out some old technologies and get optimized, they needed an IT partner they could trust to handle the job. They quickly began a search for the most dynamic and experienced managed IT specialists they could find.
“Initially, we had 300-400 knowledge workers and our staff has grown consistently,” says Ralph Yamasaki of Del Grande Dealer Group. “Just trying to be status quo was no longer sufficient; we needed a more managed and more structured, proactive approach. We needed to determine what we should do to grow as an organization in a way that drives efficiency and to promote scalability.”
“It was also critical to us that our IT partner had working knowledge and experience in the Auto industry. Some aspects of our organization are incredibly unique and we wanted the team we worked with to have a deep knowledge of the needs and challenges specific to our industry.”
After doing due diligence with various IT providers in the area, Del Grande Dealer Group was connected to Intivix. Intivix came highly recommended by another well-respected dealership and were the perfect partner for the large Del Grande Dealer Group team.
The Situation: Assessing the Current Situation to Determine a More Strategic Approach
As soon as Intivix came on the scene, they knew the dealership would benefit from a more focused and managed approach. The Del Grande Dealer Group network was growing rapidly but needed a better governance structure, more security protections and centralized PC and server management solutions to manage its expansion. Intivix recognized that DGDG would also realize strategic gains from unifying its email system to a single brand, dgdg.com.
Additionally, PC management would benefit from a centralized approach. PCs had been patched intermittently with some PCs that hadn’t been updated in some time. The Antivirus was out of date, third-party applications weren’t being updated, and there were no central patching strategies.
File security could also be improved to leverage modern authentication protections with better use of user and group file and folder permissions. DGDG would further benefit from locking down PCs to prevent end-user application installs which were slowing down PCs and hampering productivity.
“When we initially partnered, the big heavy lifting we needed from Intivix was updating and converting our platform,” says Yamasaki. “We had a combination of old computers and old technology and we needed to get everyone on the latest platform. We had a lot of users on XP and a lot of users on outdated versions of Microsoft Office. These team members were no longer able to operate because the software was so out of date and they couldn’t open attachments correctly.”
The Solution: Stabilization and Modernization of the Dealer Group’s Technology Infrastructure
The Intivix team worked quickly to implement a more managed and strategic IT approach including:
- Migration to Office 365 to take advantage of its many services, including email, license compliance with Microsoft, Office online, and OneDrive sharing functions.
- Implementation of a file-server infrastructure and a working Windows domain, assigned individual user accounts and migrated data and joined PCs to a new network.
- Integration into the Microsoft Azure cloud, using AD Connect.
- Implementation of Azure Backup and Site Recovery technologies for business continuity and disaster recovery.
- Improved network security with DNS filtering technologies to reduce web browsing abuse, and category filtering.
- Foundational projects in flight, which includes Cisco switching upgrades, moving to Gigabit switching and deploying a company-wide Meraki wireless solution.
- Implementation of near-term plans including Single Sign-On and two-factor authentication technologies.
- Tighter computer security to prevent infections, viruses, emergencies, etc.
The Outcome: Peace of Mind and a Continually Strategic IT Partnership
The team at Del Grande Dealer Group now have the peace of mind that their IT system will be reliable, secure and capable of supporting their growth. Intivix played a critical role in helping the dealership mature from a technology and process perspective. Now, their technology infrastructure has a strong foundation for their continued success.
“Before Intivix came on, there wasn’t any kind of central management or central security features,” says Yamasaki. “Intivix was instrumental in getting the network on a more proactive and managed platform. We centralized our branding and domain and migrated our disparate email systems to a central repository in Office 365. We now have a robust management platform which has provided us the foundation to capably scale our operations.”
While Partnering with Intivix, Del Grande Dealer Group now has:
- A secure network
- A unified email brand presence
- A reduced risk from viruses and security issues
- A scalable infrastructure to help with growth initiatives
- Improved network performance reducing end user frustration.
“With Intivix, the approach is much more structured,” says Yamasaki. “Our technology is much easier to manage and doesn’t rely on a reactive approach. Intivix controls the issues instead of having the issues control us.”
“Lines of communication between our teams are strong, and we can always reach them if we need them,” continues Yamasaki. “Not to mention the onsite engineers who are hands-on with all of our day-to-day operations. Their whole team has a great handle on determining what issues will come up and they’re excellent at working to prevent them from happening.”
Today Intivix provides Del Grande Dealer Group with:
- Strategic managed IT services and consistently responsive support
- Proactive management of network, server, wireless and desktops/laptops
- Ticket management, reporting, tracking & accountability solutions
- Premium security solutions
- Licensing and compliance strategy
- Project management and implementation services.
“They’re truly always available by email, phone or text,” says Yamasaki. “Someone on their staff will always step in if there’s a job that is larger than one guy can handle. No matter the task, they always have the resources we need.”
According to Jeremy Beaver, Chief Operating Officer for DGDG, “We’ve now grown to a team of 1,200+, and with our scalable infrastructure, we will continue to grow as a company,” says Beaver. “We would absolutely recommend Intivix – especially to other auto dealerships looking for a strategic and experienced partner. The Team at Intivix have been incredible from the moment we started working with them. We knew they were the right partners for us. Everyone from the leadership team on down is dedicated to making sure DGDG runs smoothly, efficiently, and securely. Everyone is extremely knowledgeable and eager to help at any moment. Intivix is truly invested with their clients with a strategic mindset.”
President, Shaun Del Grande continues, “Intivix is a strategic partner for us that lays the foundation for our growth initiatives. Both of our company values are well aligned, recognizing that our team is the most valuable asset and making sure they have leading technology helps drive our business forward.”
Is your Auto Dealership looking to better manage technology?
Contact the experienced professionals at Intivix right away at (415) 543-1033.