Safety & Retail



  • Lack of centralized IT support.
  • Disintegrated operations using disparate systems.
  • Lack of work tracking mechanism.
  • Lack of automated workflow.
  • Inefficient reporting mechanisms
  • Service requests
  • Automations
  • Ticket allocations
  • Reporting


Arco is the UK’s leading supplier of safety equipment and workwear offering over 170,000 quality assured, branded and own brand products, including personal protective equipment, clothing, footwear, gloves, workplace safety and hygiene products. Arco are recognised as providers of specialist safety advice through and this is further supported by their training and consultancy division. They reach their customers through an extensive product catalogue, website, local sales teams and a 48 strong trade counter network. Freshservice is widely used by the IT service desk team to manage internal IT needs across various functions including Sales, Business Intelligence, HR, Marketing, and Distribution.

Out-of-date IT Service Desk Software

Arco had an incumbent system which was out-of-date and out of maintenance. It was up to Service Desk Team Leader, Philip Gardham, to figure out a more efficient way to run Arco’s IT service desk. Responsible for managing teams that handle IT support across the business’s 49 sites, remote employees, and service desk agents, and since dependency played a key role in dealing with a legacy system, Philip and his team had very little visibility on the number of tickets that were coming in and the categorization of those tickets. “There was a lack of integration with email systems and poor automation. The on-premise system we had at that point was very consuming of time and resources”, says Philip.

Another challenge that the team faced was the overall IT service desk reporting. It required specialised knowledge to extract reports from the system, which meant it was difficult for agents and Arco’s management to get the reports they needed on time. “We felt like we had come to the end of the line with that tool. We could have opted to refresh the current product, but to take it to where it needed to be would have been time consuming and expensive, and maintenance was becoming very costly. As it was on-premise software, we were often running out-of-date versions of the software”, says Philip.

When the time then came for Arco’s IT team to evaluate other tools, one of their key criteria was for a unified tool that could handle everything instead of using multiple tools for managing the IT service desk.

““In addition to the service desk software, we also had asset management software. It was an outdated system and no longer fit for purpose. Getting it back into shape was not an option and it was also very expensive””

philip graham 2x
Philip Gardham

Service Desk Team Lead

Arco Ltd

Proactive Problem Solving

The team at Arco were keen to avoid the traps that they had fallen into with their existing solution. “We were certain that a cloud-based solution was the right way to move forward since we would always be running the latest version of the software. Moreover, there are several companies now in the cloud space which gave us a good shortlist to choose from”, commented Philip.

Freshservice was thoroughly evaluated and tested in Arco’s IT environment. “We thought it had a very intuitive UI which made it easy to use for agents. We also felt Freshservice was easy to configure to make it work in our environment”, admits Philip. As the IT team started using the tool, the feedback they received was extremely positive. “It became very obvious that Freshservice had a clean look and feel - much cleaner versus some of the more difficult to use solutions on offer”, says Philip. Other things that stood out for Philip and his team were the fact that Freshservice was flexible and customizable - whether it was setting up custom scenarios, workflows, or automations. “Moving from an on-premise tool to a cloud product certainly reduces the maintenance overheads but also ensures other non-tech or non-IT teams can efficiently use the product”, adds Philip.

Using Freshservice at Arco

As soon as Philip and his team moved over to Freshservice, they were able to regain insights into what was going on with incoming IT service requests. “We were able to construct detailed reports - things like CSAT responses to shed light on how we were doing - we never had that before”, says Philip. Other areas where Freshservice has been able to add value are:

  • Service requests: Configuration of accounts and new equipment had been lost in everyday tasks. By using service catalog functionality in Freshservice, Philip is now able to easily roll-out items like provisioning new user accounts. The information the IT team needs to complete the request is now much easier to capture. For example, defining fields for service requests and what equipment is needed for new starters.
  • Automation: By using proper categorisation for issues and a combination of Dispatch’r and Observer rules in Freshservice, IT are now able to better construct critical incident processes. For example, if Phil spots a major incoming issue he can easily trigger a critical incident process in Freshservice that sets up a problem and notifies teams of the critical incident. Philip can then manage the incident and record the necessary information, and also report on the number of critical incidents to Arco’s management.
  • Ticket Allocation: Allocation of tickets amongst the team is now much easier. Previously, tickets came in and sat at the top level and agents would take a ticket, which caused issues with them being allocated in a timely manner and led to uneven workloads among agents . Using auto-assignments has led to quicker assignment of tickets and a more even balance among team members in terms of the types of tickets being worked on by each agent.

Impact of Freshservice

After using Freshservice, everyone within the IT has a much better idea on what tickets are incoming as well as visibility of workloads, enabling both management and IT service desk agents to better manage workloads. Philip comments, “we are also able to measure and record our SLAs properly. We are starting to set the teams targets in terms of SLA compliance, and using this we’ve been able to drive our monthly SLA achievement rate over 90%.”

Combined with CSAT feedback from ticket closures, this has given Philip the ability to demonstrate the quality of service being provided for the first time. “In many ways, the CSAT metric is the most important to me – it’s the granular detail of how our users feel about their interactions with us, and we are seeing some really positive feedback from the business. With FreshService prompting for feedback, we have been able to see an increase to 96% in our CSAT score in Q3”, says Philip. He goes on to conclude “more of the wider organization are also now starting to use Freshservice; teams such as Business Intelligence (BI), HR and Marketing etc. With some of the automations and features (in particular the approval system and request forms) they have been able to make big improvements to their internal processes as well .”