John Cotton Group Limited is one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of pillows, duvets and mattress protectors, producing more than 20 million pillows and 10 million duvets each year. Established in 1916, John Cotton is a family owned and run manufacturing company and has been trading for over 100 years, in which time it has acquired many awards including; National Bed Federation’s Bed Component Supplier of the Year, Asda Supplier of the Year and an MBE. The manufacturing, warehousing and distribution operation spans across the north of England, plus Australia and Poland.
As pioneers in fibre solutions, technology has played an instrumental role to John Cotton’s success. As their trusted technology partner for over 6 years – pure technology group has played an important role in supporting John Cotton’s IT vision and requirements, working collaboratively over 4 major projects during the partnership.
With a new digital strategy in place, John Cotton sought to significantly upscale IT infrastructure and security due to a rapidly changing working environment. A robust, multi-tiered IT security strategy is essential in the modern working environment and John Cotton required a solution that would support business continuity and provide increased security, ensuring that systems were not just secure but also available and reliable.
Growing demands from an increasingly mobile workforce required increased flexibility with email and document sharing platforms. An important part of the order-taking process is the ability to receive orders by email and a more dynamic and flexible way of working would ensure customer service was as responsive as possible. John Cotton historically relied upon an on-premise email system, which meant that if the system was down, accessibility to data and orders was lost.
The pure technology group offered John Cotton a consultative approach to gain a full understanding of requirements, aligned this to the vision for the business and then worked alongside multiple vendors to form a solution.
As a Microsoft Tier-1 CSP (Cloud Solutions Provider) the pure technology group is able to provide technical expertise and go beyond the transactional sale of Microsoft Cloud products; from best practice solution design, optimal configuration right through to effective support.
A Microsoft Cloud solution was designed to host all of John Cotton’s critical applications such as email and document sharing. Microsoft 365 ensured the mobile workforce is able to use the full Microsoft 365 suite remotely, which means John Cotton staff are able to service customers promptly, answer queries and transact orders on the move – an important part of the digital transformation. Microsoft 365 is architected on a global scale to establish resilience and protection of data. It guarantees customer data stays within the UK, with suitable connectivity and continuity of service, through the 365 platform.
The pure technology group’s 3-tiered security solution, comprising; Mimecast (email), Barracuda (firewall) and Bitdefender (end-point protection) was implemented to provide John Cotton with multi-tiered protection against growing IT threats, safe-guarding attacks from network entry right the way through to end-point.
“Ultimately our customers benefit as we’re able to get back to them much faster. We’re able to answer queries, take orders and service any issues they may have. With our new security strategy and solutions in place, I’m now confident we can protect against increasing cyber-threats.
Partnerships with businesses such as the pure technology group and Microsoft are important to our business. We’ve relied heavily on partnerships for the last 100 years and we need to keep these partnerships going. We needed to look to the future, and the future is a cloud.”
Steve Norton, Group Network Manager, John Cotton Ltd.