Custom digital solutions with Checkmate Fire

Fluid supported the business's growth strategy with digital solutions to surface data, integrate systems and automate processes.

Checkmate Fire is the UK’s leading passive fire protection specialist, supplying a comprehensive range of third-party accredited survey, installation and compliance services to public and private sector organisations across the country. Founder members of the BRE/LPCB passive fire protection certification scheme, they’ve served a growing list of industries for over three decades. Checkmate Fire protects people and property nationwide across the UK.

Build data dashboards, integrate systems and automate processes

Checkmate Fire CEO John Lewthwaite and the executive leadership team were frustrated by the limitations of the sales, operational and accounts applications. Three key systems, Salesforce, Boris and ClipIT, weren’t fully integrated, which meant senior managers had poor visibility into business performance, and teams across the seven regional offices were using inefficient manual processes and off-system reporting methods.

The executive leadership team worked with staff across the business to transform operations and develop a unified approach called 'The Checkmate Way'. The whole team believed in the Checkmate Way, but they didn't have the right tool set for one consistent process.

"For us, this is the start of a long term relationship with a partner that understands what is important to our business - as well as being nice people to work with"

- John Lewthwaite, CEO, Checkmate Fire

A problem-solving partnership for business benefits

The leadership team chose to work with Fluid because they wanted a partner who could rapidly identify and deliver improvements, leveraging new and existing technology, in order to generate quick business benefits.

Fluid Director Louise Pipe started by working to understand their business vision, the people and the challenges. At the time, both businesses were moving to remote working because of lockdown. Fluid Business Analyst, Lindsay Cahill, led virtual process mapping workshops, which participants said were 'just as good as being in the room'.

Checkmate’s Chief Operating Officer, David Woffendin, spearheaded the BA process internally, while Fluid worked on the mechanical details to ensure everything ran smoothly from a technical and logistic standpoint.

"Data only becomes power when it can be easily and instantly presented into a format that is consistent and relevant. Fluid understood from day one the bespoke aspects of our business and were able to give us what we needed through the wizardry of modern technology"

- David Woffendin, Chief Operating Officer, Checkmate Fire

Custom solutions plus project and supplier management

Louise’s team presented options to Checkmate’s senior managers, showing how the scalable solutions fit for both now and the future, based on technology and budget and highlighting the risks. Checkmate decided on three work packages:

  • System integration by robotic process automation (RPA), aka ‘the bot’

Fluid software developers  utilised Microsoft Power Automate to enable new work to be created automatically in BORIS and ClipIT directly from Salesforce.

The new process means when a contract is won the contract administrators run a report from Salesforce which includes all key data and save it to Sharepoint. The bot copies the data and enters it into Boris and ClipIT, automatically creating contract records. No more manual re-entry of data or administration burden of spreadsheets.

  • Performance reporting with operational management dashboards aka ‘one version of truth’

Fluid software developers Ijaz Amjad worked closely with Checkmate senior managers to understand the Salesforce, Boris and ClipIT systems and their business processes. Fluid built a new SQL server data mart, i.e. one data warehouse merging all the information from the three systems. Fluid utilised Microsoft Power BI to create an operations management dashboard reporting portal, containing multiple dashboards. Now Checkmate senior managers can see real time reports on business performance throughout the company, the business units, and for each individual contract manager. This ensures no more labour intensive production of system trackers and reporting, and enables Checkmate to increase operational efficiencies across the board.

"Working on this project has allowed us to react faster than ever before with less manual input, ensuring we identify business risks early and act on them quickly, giving our customers the best possible service and embracing the latest digital technology."

- Damien Ward, National Technical & Compliance Manager, Checkmate Fire

  • Purchase to pay

Fluid Directors supported Checkmate to implement the systemised purchase ordering and invoice matching system. She introduced good practice project and supplier management approaches to ensure their supplier delivered a robust solution that met the business's needs.

"Louise and the team helped map out and transform our purchasing process, introducing discipline, control and automation. This has shaved days off our month-end process and instilled more confidence around cost cost control in the business."

- Peter Rudge, Chief Financial Officer, Checkmate Fire

Data dashboards, automated processes, increased efficiency

With the bot busy at work, 22 instances of re-keying data between spreadsheets, Boris and ClipIT have been removed. The bot saves time, increases efficiency and has reduced the risk of error from multiple manual data entries.

The dashboards provide click-of-a-button data on operational KPIs, including health and safety, quality, sales activity, profitability, productivity and customer satisfaction. The database supporting the three systems is a single source of information for the whole organisation.

Checkmate Fire’s CEO and team value consistency. Through the partnership with Fluid, they’ve put in place the right tools and systems to enable the office teams to work to one process, continue to deliver to the same high standard across the regions, and that are scalable to support the business growth.


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