Policaro Executive Vice President Hans Bigler is pretty open about the fact that user experience design and software development isn’t the luxury car company’s strong suit.
“We're automotive retailers, we're not a software development firm,” he said.
But that didn’t stop the Zeitspace team from explaining the basics when Zeitspace worked on an inventory platform that would power Policaro’s new websites.
“It wasn't just, ‘Oh, you know, we'll get it done, don't worry about it, we look after that.’ They actually explained how and why it worked that way,” said Bigler.
That small step made everyone involved in the project on Policaro's side more effective, said Bigler, and it built confidence in Zeitspace because everyone now understood what was happening.
“It was a really good experience,” he said. “I think it makes for an easier journey down the road. What they did in the first week paid dividends for the next 10.”
To power their new websites, Policaro needed an inventory platform to store content, and give their team the ability to upload and change inventory. Long term, they’re trying to develop an e-commerce site. But when they looked at the off-the-shelf options nothing fit the bill — they were all geared toward marketing, not retail transactions.
Policaro was looking for a trusted local user experience design and software development partner to help make their vision a reality and Zeitspace came as a referral.
Policaro had used both onshore and offshore developers in the past, but wanted to start fostering relationships with more local teams, said Bigler, so when they were thinking about working with a partner on the inventory platform he thought of Zeitspace. He’d had a few conversations with Zeitspace partners Mark Connolly and Jeff Fedor, and it was clear Policaro and Zeitspace had similar working styles.
“We found we conduct business in a very transparent, open way — the exact same way Zeitspace does. Everything's on the table. We collaborate together to solve problems and it just works. It worked well,” he said.
Zeitspace brought the technical expertise and Policaro brought their automotive knowledge, said Bigler. Zeitspace captured what Policaro envisioned for the product and brought it to life, he added.
The collaboration really kicked in with weekly sprints, stand ups and sprint demos, where the Zeitspace team presented what they had accomplished in the previous week.
“They always delivered what they said,” said Bigler. “They managed to take that vision of where we were trying to go and make it a reality.”
Policaro’s team is now uploading vehicles to the new system. The websites are poised to go live over the coming weeks. The project was the starting point for their e-commerce site for Policaro's super sports car luxury division and their leasing arm.
“I think the experience, the functionality, the quality, even the aesthetics, it was a good partnership,” said Bigler. “With their technical expertise, our requirements, meshing it and making it come to life, it just worked out really well.”
The project: To power their new websites, Policaro needed an inventory platform to store content, and give their team the ability to upload and change inventory.
The problem: Legacy systems were restrictive — only displaying by price or alphabetically.
The solution: The platform Zeitspace built allows Policaro to customize the display and experience of their websites. The system will also be an integral part of their e-commerce site to actually purchase cars online, something that's part of Policaro's long term plan.
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