News and Case Studies

Read news and articles on the progress of the superfast broadband rollout in Scotland and more.

Scarletts (Scotland)

Monday, 02 July 2018

Based near Meigle in the heart of the Perthshire countryside, Scarletts is one of the leading honey packers in the UK. As well as manufacturing honey from its own bees, Scarletts packs honey which is shipped to them from manufacturers as far afield as India and Australia. After packing in jars and other containers as required, the honey is supplied to customers worldwide, including across Europe and the USA. Customers include major supermarkets, wholesalers and independents.
"It is enabling us to compete on a level playing field with other businesses in less rural locations and trade internationally from our small hamlet in the Perthshire countryside"

Proprietor Andrew Scarlett explains: “We are running a global business so fast, effective communications are vital to the smooth running of the operation. Before we had superfast fibre broadband, we used to really struggle with our broadband speeds.

All online at same time

“I sometimes work from our house, which is just opposite our packing premises and yard. As we have teenage children, they are often using a plethora of online devices, downloading music, using Snapchat and so on. If I needed to make a Skype call to a customer in America, for example, all other online activity would have to stop, causing huge frustration. Now we have a fibre connection, it is fantastic that the whole family can be online at the same time, without anyone having to be restricted.”

Andrew continues: “The quality of Skype video conferencing is now crystal clear, without any of the annoying buffering I experienced before. This means I can rely on greater use of Skype for calls to customers in future, which will help us consolidate our worldwide customer relationships as it always helps to speak face-to-face.”

Time savings

“The faster broadband speeds are making a vast difference to us, saving us time and allowing us to be more productive. For example, to comply with food standards accreditation, every pallet that leave the yard needs to have paperwork to show it has been tested and include customer specific information such as delivery notes and pallet barcodes. This means we need to log into customers’ web sites to download the information to attach to the pallets. Before we had fibre broadband, we would often have lorries sitting in the yard for ages while they had to wait for us to download and print off the necessary paperwork. Now this can all happen seamlessly. The time saving all round is immense.

“We can also now take full advantage of cloud applications such as Office 365 and cloud based accounting software, streamlining our business management. We can have the ease and security of backing up all our documents and emails in the cloud and generally take advantage of all the latest technology as it is introduced. With superfast broadband, it is quick and straightforward to download new software or software updates whereas previously we could only ever do this overnight.

Improved productivity

“With so many diverse suppliers and customers around the world, we are regularly emailing large documents and we can now send and receive these almost instantly. All of this adds up to an improvement in our business performance, as the time we save can now be spent more constructively.”

Andrew adds: “Now we have fibre broadband, we are going to set up a wireless network which will extend the coverage to the yard and packing premises too. As well as meaning we have more flexibility regarding where we carry out our online activities, this will also bring advantages to our bee-keepers who live on site. Most are from overseas and use Skype to stay in touch with family and friends at home.

Andrew concludes: “Superfast broadband is a huge boost to our business, streamlining our operations and creating new opportunities for the way we work. It is enabling us to compete on a level playing field with other businesses in less rural locations and trade internationally from our small hamlet in the Perthshire countryside.”