From its three locations in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, OK, and McKinney, TX, Red Carpet Charters and its fleet of 55 coaches move passengers throughout the United States and Canada. The company, a stakeholder company in the International Motorcoach Group (IMG), turns 25 this year.
General manager Gene Dutton notes that as Red Carpet has grown since its founding in 1985, the company has had to address an increasing stream of data accessibility challenges.
“We outsourced our information technology (IT) operations for years and we were never satisfied with the way they were managed,” says Dutton. “We went through a number of IT service providers and found the customer service always very poor.”
He says Red Carpet even considered bringing the IT function in house.
“That would have meant a tremendous investment in better hardware and more servers,” says Dutton. “We also would have had to hire a separate IT staff to support our expansion.”
Red Carpet found the solution to its IT challenges through its close work with Relational Bus Systems (RBS), the provider of its charter management software.
RBS certainly understood the Red Carpet operation in its entirety and as a reseller partner of Independence IT, was able to recommend that company’s Premier Managed Desktop solution.
In addition to the charter management software, Independence IT also hosts the maintenance software application, Microsoft Office and Microsoft Outlook for Red Carpet.
Independence IT hosts the assorted software applications in its data center. The easily accessible system handles day-to-day management, information security, data backup and recovery, as well as end-user connectivity services. Users simply log into the Independence IT Managed Desktop, which serves as their work environment. RBS president Bob Schecter says staff members can develop a quote in the RBS GoChart2000 charter management system and e-mail the quote along with related invoices and documentation.
“Accessibility is the biggest advantage of this hosted solution,” says Dutton. “Our employees work from diverse locations and the capability to provide them access to the same pool of data is essential.”
He says with their ability to access data and applications from anywhere out on the road, permits the most up-to-date reports, schedules and other key information. These operations are now essentially paperless.
“Our IT partners have been very good for this company,” says Dutton. If our system does go down, Independence IT is there immediately to get us up and running. The company seems to always have a quick solution readily available and downtime is no longer an issue for the long term.”
“We have been working with Indpendence IT for about seven years and regularly recommend its hosted desktop solution to our customers,” says Schecter. “It is a logical solution for small and mid-sized organizations with multiple locations.” BR