Accelerating Digital Transformation
Founded in the UK 1973, Eurocamp offers camping holidays in over 170 third-party owned campsites, across 10 markets, generating an annual revenue in excess of £100m.
Eurocamp appointed Building Blocks to implement a digital transformation across the business. The company had recognised that it needed to become an online-led business, with customers using the website by default. It wanted to integrate the on and offline brand experience, and lay the digital foundations to support future expansion into new markets.
As part of a digital transformation project, Eurocamp was seeking to merge the Keycamp brand into Eurocamp, and centralise the pan-European execution of its digital initiatives. A key aim of the project was to drive efficiency and reduce costs across the business.
After some initial investigation and discussions with internal stakeholders, Building Blocks unearthed that the biggest frustration was that things were taking too long. For example, the process to get content updates live was taking days, due to both process inefficiency and technology that was no longer fit for purpose.
The digital team was split across departments, with the web developers sat as part of the IT team, while the digital marketing, UX team and designers were part of the marketing team. This made communication far more difficult than it needed to be.
As a result, internal projects were suffering. Things were taking too long to complete and were being built on legacy systems that were no longer fit for purpose. Technology solutions had been reactively bolted on to solve issues and this was now starting to affect the core performance of the website.
The Eurocamp team were committed to change and improvement. There were, however, constraints:
- Eurocamp had to use what they had already as much as possible (e.g. software, people, assets).
- They had to ensure that the solution was flexible enough to cater for all local market needs.
- The team had to operate the web platform after go-live; they didn’t want to rely on external suppliers to manage such a business critical system.
- There was fixed delivery date for the project, in-line with the merger of the Eurocamp and Keycamp brands.
Together with Eurocamp, Building Blocks reviewed the requirements, identified gaps across the processes, skills and tools, and investigated quick wins. An internal Digital unit was established, and was tasked with focussing on five key areas:
After the initial workshops, it was clear that Eurocamp needed a space in their office where the entire team could work together. It needed a space where members of the team could quickly talk to each other and to foster some team spirit.
A spare office was found and the entire team moved in. Walls were painted with Idea Paint so they acted like whiteboards and a large monitor attached to the wall to display status and facilitate the daily stand ups.
This is very similar to how Building Blocks work, and it was great to see the immediate effect that having a single working environment had.
2. Team Structure
Together we designed the ideal team structure, with Building Blocks filling the current skill gaps.
Building Blocks acted as mentors for the Eurocamp team. We ran master classes on key technologies and approaches, paired members of the Eurocamp team up with our experts for daily mentoring sessions, and held daily tech scrums.
Eurocamp’s digital team started to build in confidence. They learnt new skills and started taking over key roles. The Building Blocks team remove themselves gradually, whilst continuing to run training sessions and reviewing decisions. We also stepped in to assist with larger pieces of work when the team was at capacity. By the time of launch, the team was in a position to run the platform self-sufficiently.
4. Processes and controls
To achieve success, there needed to be a realistic plan. We worked ‘with agility’ (not ‘Agile’, as the business had a fixed scope and deadline). We broke the project unto key deliverables and completed them one-by-one, starting with the quick-wins we addressed during the initial investigations.
We also put in internal controls, such as Change Requests, once we got into the build. This was to enhance the transparency of the implications changing the scope had on the deadline, so that the team could make informed decisions. We utilised collaboration tools, including Liquid Planner, Trello and Jira.
We implemented a number of working processes and continuous integration that enabled us to deploy new versions quickly and often.
KPIs were identified to track and measure, including: page load times; server monitoring; issue resolution times; deployment times; timesheets and staff performance management.
Building Blocks built and rolled-out 13 transactional, mobile responsive websites for Eurocamp.
Content can now be repurposed across channels (including print), and local market teams have the ability to update the site much faster than previously.
Eurocamp treated digital delivery as a discipline that is critical to the business, and understood that its people and processes were key to true digital transformation. Building Blocks helped Eurocamp to implement new ways of working that were subsequently rolled-out by other areas of the business. We built internal skills so that the team were equipped to operate and rub the website with limited external assistance. With multiple members of the business now trained, the digital team bottle neck has been removed so the website updates can be implemented far more rapidly.