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Warmteservice

Yenlo helps Warmteservice to automate the human way

Key player

Fast, flexible and innovative

There was a time that Warmteservice was just this little shop in Amsterdam. Whoever was looking for a solid central heating system and tailor-made advice, made his way to the de Bruin family. Those days are over. Today, Warmteservice consists of 53 branches and an online shop. Still their recipe for success remains the same: quality products; experts behind the counter. How does such a big company stay in touch with its customers? The answer is simple, as it’s all about good communication, both internally, on the work floor and in cooperation with integration partner Yenlo.

Warmteservice has moved with the times. What once started as a small family business dealing in central heating systems, has now become a key player on the Dutch installation market. In addition to heating systems, products and services for electricity, plumbing and roofing have been added to the product range. The Warmteservice team combines knowledge of the market with engineering and IT expertise, which makes them fast, flexible and innovative. But despite the many changes that Warmteservice has made, the team never seemed to have lost sight of their main principles. "Our relationships with customers and suppliers are still very personal", as Ifran, ERP Developer, explains. "And with that attitude, there’s room for innovation and new investments."

warmteservice_image

Receiving, forwarding, translating, configuring

The ESB, which stands for Enterprise Service Bus, is such an example. Until recently, Warmteservice worked with multiple, separate systems. Data streams for customers, orders, products and invoices were all managed separately and many of these messages were dealt with locally. This system worked perfectly fine, until the company got so big that the relatively small IT department could no longer oversee all data processes. The Warmteservice team started looking for a solution and decided to purchase an ESB, which is a smart product that receives messages and not only forwards, but also translates and configures them. This way, the IT department could easily set up workflows for different data streams without having to deal with all messages separately. This seemed like a simple and efficient solution. However, finding the right ESB vendor was a different story. Warmteservice therefore commissioned Ifran Laloe, a first class Developer and student Information Technology at the time, to create a shortlist of ESB providers and select the very best.

Rematch

Ifran conducted an extensive research on the matter and pretty soon the name WSO2 emerged from the list of candidates. However, back in the day there was no Dutch WSO2 partner, so Warmteservice, known for its national orientation, went for a different vendor with a partner closer to home. "Warmteservice is still a family business", as Ifran explains. "We therefore highly value solid relationships with partners who can support us. Remote collaboration just doesn’t work for us." Unfortunately, the relationship with the new ESB partner was a short-lived one, as the ESB vendor would soon sell all its products and licenses so that the supporting partner was no longer of any use to Warmteservice.

The search for an ESB and new ESB partner started again, which was actually quite fortunate, as Dutch firm Yenlo had just partnered up with WSO2, offering the latter a new chance of collaboration with Warmteservice. "When we found out that WSO2 was working together with a Dutch partner, we put the company back on the shortlist", Ifran says. He conducted a second, extensive research by comparing three different ESB vendors and this time, WSO2 turned out to be the best option.

A totally new concept

Most companies choose WSO2 because of its 100% open source guarantee. For Warmteservice, this wasn’t the case. "Working with an open source product was totally new for us", Ifran says. "Initially, we actually preferred the safety of a contract." But the quality and manageability of WSO2 were stronger than their fear of open source. "I can apply my programming skills directly to the WSO2 products," Ifran explains. "I come up with an idea, write down the steps and make it happen on the screen." That’s the thing with WSO2, not only are their products accessible to users; they also give them insight into the underlying processes and steps. Moreover, there’s no need to fear the open source environment when you’re working with the WSO2 Gurus of Yenlo.

"If no one notices anything different, we’ve done our job right."

Learn from the best

The implementation of the WSO2 platform went way faster than expected. "We had it on track within seven days", Ifran says. This was mainly due to the smooth cooperation between him and the Yenlo Gurus. Two of them offered a week on-premise support and rebuilt all systems in the ESB. Along with Ifran, they made sure that all message flows were automated and adjusted correctly. For example, the IT department would henceforth be able to manage all message streams and decide in what way the information would be configured. "At every stage in the process, I only had one single contact person within Yenlo," Ifran says. "This way, I learned from the best while we could make some good progress." When the ESB was launched, no reactions came from either colleagues nor clients. "Which is a good sign!" Ifran says, laughing. "If no one notices anything different, we’ve done our job right."

Quality and customer contact

Yenlo currently offers help and support through a ticket system. This way, Warmteservice gets all the support they need with no strings attached. But since the implementation of the ESB, Yenlo also got involved in other major projects. For example, package delivery is now completely automated and optimized by the WSO2 platform. Packages that were sent decentralized, are now regulated at a central level. This is just another step towards a more efficient way of data processing and quicker service. It’s customer-orientation 2.0, without compromising on quality or customer contact.

About Warmteservice

In 1964, engineer Theo de Bruin sr. starts his own business in the Haarlemmerstraat in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In his shop, he sells fittings and boilers to other engineers and installers. When his son Theo jr. joins in in 1989, things start moving. Not only does Warmteservice open new offices in both Amsterdam and other parts of the country; the offer gets expanded drastically.

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"Our relationships with customers and suppliers are still very personal."

Ifran Laloe - ERP developer

Today, Warmteservice is a household name across the Netherlands, counting more than 50 offices and an online shop. Both online and in stores, the company offers a wide range of products, including fittings, boilers, radiators, roofing materials and electricity. Warmteservice is known for its innovation drive and cohesive team, which has turned out to be a winning combination. The company automates wherever possible, but makes sure knowledge and personal advice prevail.

Solutions and Services we used to make this project a huge success.

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