IT Awards 2023

Offerz.UK LTD: Best Emerging SME Marketing Agency 2023 - London SME News | IT Awards 2023 IT AWARDS 2023

The UK IT sector has been booming since 2022 witnessed the UK tech field become the European leader in market value. Now ranked third in the world, the IT market is a tremendously valued industry, with the business landscape forecasted even further success. In a world where electronics have become vital for everyday life, the IT industry has continued to adapt and transform to bring us the new generation of technology in the increasingly digital society. After a successful first year, SME News is proud to announce the IT Awards are returning for 2023! With only the mostdeserving being invited to participate, our programme aims to shine a light on the contributions and achievements that have been displayed in the IT sector. Leading the way for the IT industry, the UK has been recognised as a key player within the technology market, and with the increase of tech unicorns emerging over the past few years, the UK IT trade is only continuing to flourish. The dependence on internet-connected devices has now become ingrained in our society, with over 94% of the UK adult population accessing the internet daily, contributing to the prosperity of the UK IT market. This is making the industry highly lucrative and continuing to show room for technological expansion for the foreseeable future. The companies working within this industry are widely innovative and in high demand, with the number of start-ups launched in 2020 alone testifying to this fact. In an industry where trends and developments influence the market, being innovative holds the key to success. Editors Letter Phone: +44 (0) 203 970 0018 Website: Sofi Parry Editor

Contents 4. Pride Solutions Derby Ltd: Most Innovative Railway Systems Provider 2023 6. Uptech Ltd: Best IT Support Company 2023 – Norfolk 8. Borderless Security Limited: Most Innovative SaaS Application 2023 10. Offerz.UK LTD: Best Emerging SME Marketing Agency 2023 - London 12. Caldere Associates Ltd: Best CRM & CXM Consultancy 2023 13. Nationwide Fleet Services Ltd: Fleet & Vehicle Support IT Application of the Year 2023 - South East England 14. Gunn Stewart Solutions: Most Customer-Focused Digital Transformation Consultancy 2023 - Scotland 15. Zhero Limited: Best International SME IT & Cyber Security Support Company 2023 16. ebpSource Limited: Best Electronic Billing Software Solutions Provider 2023 17. Frontier Digital: Cloud Platform Engineering Start- Up of the Year 2023 - Scotland 18. Bee IT Solutions Ltd: Best Managed IT Service Provider 2023 - Yorkshire 19. Inception Business Technology: Most Trusted Print & IT Service Provider 2023 - Wiltshire 20. Tech Amigos Ltd: Best SME Cloud Adoption Service Provider 2023 21. Appogee HR: Best HR Software Provider 2023 22. VoIPstudio: Leading Providers of Integrated & Cloud Communication Solutions 2023 23. Nimbitech: Best Business Application Developers 2023 - South Yorkshire 24. Tasman Analytics: Best Boutique Analytics Consultancy 2023 – London 25. The Loyalty Co: Most Innovative Digital Loyalty Platform Development Agency 2023 26. Decided Ltd: Best Cloud-Based Engagement Delivery Company 2023 27. Two Hours Sleep: Most Innovative Website Creation & Development Service 2023 28. Affinitus Group Limited: Best ERP Software Provider 2023 29. Reverse Life: Website Traffic Generators of the Year 2023 30. Bespin Labs Limited: Most Innovative Cloud-Based App Development Company 2023 - West Yorkshire 31. Dext: Best Accounting Cloud-Based Software Company 2023 32. Lyon Managed Services: Most Innovative Managed IT Services Provider 2023 - London

4 | SME News IT Awards 2023 Most Innovative Railway Systems Provider 2023 Operating in a very niche space certainly has its advantages, but it also comes with many obstacles and challenges. As the company gains notable recognition in the IT Awards 2023, we speak to Lee Clough of IT-specialist, Pride Solutions Derby Ltd, about its work. SME News IT Awards 2023 / 4 Pride Solutions Derby

Pride Solutions Derby Ltd (Pride Solutions) is primarily an IT & Technology partner to the railway. Starting life as a small IT business supporting small to medium sized enterprises and finding bespoke technological solutions to meet their unique problems, Pride Solutions was built on the back of a desperate need for honest, trusted, value for money support that was viable for small businesses – to allow them to capitalise on the wealth of benefits that come from well deployed and supported technology. The business grew on the back of this and migrated into the railway industry in late 2021 where it now provides IT, Engineering, and Cybersecurity support to various organisations, including passenger train operators, vehicle owning companies, and technical consultancies. Current workstreams for the business include supporting a large train operator to manage their ageing digital equipment, such as CCTV and data recorders, on 40-yearold passenger vehicles as well as providing consultancy support to that same operator around the cybersecurity of their new, state of the art fleets of trains. An example of this was the creation of a tool that allows the simple download of CCTV footage from a 20-year-old CCTV system simply by plugging the removable drive into a USB port. This involved reverse engineering how the removable drives worked and developing bespoke tooling and coding that allowed secure access to the drive without risking damage. Creating this tool prevented the operator from needing to replace the whole CCTV system onboard vehicles that have a very short life expectancy remaining. “We specialise in bringing together our wealth of railway engineering, IT system, and cybersecurity knowledge to provide support packages and assistance that is tailored specifically to meet the very niche needs of the customer in a highly regulated industry,” explains Lee Clough, the firm’s Director and he goes on to tells us more about the firm’s six core principles of Accountability, Safety, Pride, Innovation, Reliability, and Excellence, that underpin the organisation and everything it stands for. “Embedding each of those values in all elements of work ensures that we are always providing solutions that are safe, transparent, compliant to rules and legislation (not something particularly easy in a heavily regulated environment like the railway) and always adding value.” Pride Solutions’ unique selling point is quite obvious – owing to its niche areas of specialism, namely the combination of railway engineering experience and technology skills, and this places Pride Solutions in an unusual position to provide extremely tailored support to very particular problems within the industry. What’s more, it also allows the company to turn solutions around extremely quickly, minimising disruption to the customer’s operation in a way larger organisations may struggle with. The railway industry itself is also going through a paradigm shift in how connected its vehicles are. Lee tells us how, only 10 years ago, the overwhelming majority of Britain’s trains had nothing but passenger Wi-Fi to worry about from a security perspective. However now they have complex, digitally connected command and control systems that have changed the threat landscape completely. “As the public would rightly expect, we ensure we only utilise qualified and competent engineers to carry out work and we have become excellent at turning our existing knowledge and compliance to these challenges into a business selling point,” says Lee. “It allows Pride Solutions Derby to sit anywhere in the process timeline from initial consultancy support to the provision of full turn-key projects and still add immense value to a project.” Working in the railway is an extremely challenging undertaking in itself and Pride Solutions is often bound by technical competency requirements, extensive legislation, industry group standards and countless stakeholders for every new project. Lee tells us that working with vehicles at a fleet level, it is also absolutely critical to ensure that solutions are as simple and repeatable as possible. “The logic and engineering behind some of our solutions can be extensive at times, but we work hard to ensure that, by the time the end customer comes to interact with the solution, we have made it as straight forward as possible,” he elaborates. The firm also utilises Cloud solutions and automation technologies to drive data led improvements to its systems. For example, writing scripts that are uses in its online systems to automate security testing of vehicles and fleets. This cuts down the amount of time required for data gathering stages and allows the company to get to the end solutions faster. To support this, Pride Solutions is also exploring how Artificial Intelligence can be used to further simplify its processes and add more value to the services it can offer its customers. As a very small organisation it is of utmost importance to Lee and the team that the right people to work with are selected when recruiting. To this end, Lee prioritises their motivation and passion for working as a team to create safe, innovative solutions to problems above all else. “The team, as a collective, has the skills and experience to support each other. So if one person doesn’t know something, there will be someone else who has either dealt with it in their career already, or knows what documentation and standards to research,” he enthuses. “We rely heavily on each other and our support network of contractors and consultants, and teamwork is key. You can learn and teach technical information, thinking your way out of a problem innovatively is down to how you naturally approach problems and is a much harder skill to teach.” This strong commitment to teamwork and working collaboratively is what helped Pride Solutions to triumph recently in the IT Awards 2023. Understandably delighted by this accolade, which is testament to the dedication and hard work put in by the team, Lee is now looking forward to a strong and prosperous future with plans to expand the firm’s cybersecurity capabilities beyond their current scope to include penetration testing, incident response, digital forensic evidence gathering and remote monitoring and detection capabilities. In fact, there is a roadmap laid out that sees the organisation qualifying in industry qualifications such as Certified Network Defender, Certified Ethical Hacker, Computer Hacking Forensic Investigation, and Incident Handlers to support customers at all stages of the cybersecurity lifecycle. “Pride Solutions Derby is an exceptionally unique business designed to support extremely unique systems in a very unknown industry, where it is almost impossible to get support from the original manufacturers,” Lee states. “We are uniquely placed to not only understand the IT side of systems, but exactly how they interface with complex passenger trains, the safety critical nature of some of these systems and the best way to maintain them.” Contact Details Contact: Lee Clough Company: Pride Solutions Derby Ltd Web Address:

6 | SME News IT Awards 2023 As a leading IT support company based in Kings Lynn and West Norfolk, Uptech Ltd is passionate about the support it offers to businesses. Its offerings include enterprise-level tools, Cyber Security Solutions, and IT hardware. We find out more from James Fowler as we profile the company following its celebrations from a prestigious win in the IT Awards 2023. Uptech Ltd (Uptech) believes that every business should have an IT system. It enables them to be more productive and to be more profitable. But even more importantly, Uptech wants to make the lives of the business owners and their staff easier and more enjoyable. Established in 1994, Uptech offers high-end IT services to businesses with anywhere between 5-200 staff members, with multiple locations (including remote working), in order to keep them all connected. The firm has helped its clients to grow and improve their IT, becoming more profitable and productive. With services ranging from managed IT solutions, cybersecurity, IT kit advise, and Office 365 solutions, including Cloud storage, set-up, and maintenance, it’s not hard to see why Uptech is a magnificent force in its field. Since its launch nearly 30 years ago, Uptech has grown and developed into a thriving company and with that, so has its valued relationships with its loyal clients. Now a national company, working alongside a diverse customer base that includes small, medium, and enterprise-level businesses, Uptech’s core principals have remained the same: to work seamlessly as a part of its clients’ team to make sure their IT systems enable them to operate as efficiently and productively as possible. “We like it when IT is not the talking point,” explains James Fowler, the firm’s Business Development Manager. “Our aim is to make our customer’s IT systems as unobtrusive as possible and the shield in the Uptech logo says it all – our mission is to guard against potential issues, to maintain existing systems, and to effortlessly integrate new and improved systems as they become appropriate.” Uptech’s primary objective is to help its clients maximise their return on investment in IT and cybersecurity. The firm understands that technology plays a crucial role in driving business success, and its aim is to ensure that clients get the best possible outcomes from their IT investments. Whether it's implementing robust cybersecurity measures, optimising infrastructure, or leveraging the power of digital transformation, Uptech provides tailored solutions that align with its clients' specific goals and objectives. Moreover, the firm prides itself on delivering exceptional IT support and business technology support. Its experts are available to assist clients with their day-to-day IT operations, troubleshoot issues, and provide timely and reliable support, and it prioritises responsive and personalised service, ensuring that clients have a smooth and uninterrupted technology experience. Additionally, Uptech’s consultancy services offer strategic guidance and expertise to help businesses make informed decisions about their IT infrastructure and digital strategies. By collaborating closely with clients, understanding their unique needs and challenges, and providing comprehensive recommendations to enhance their IT capabilities and drive growth. The dedicated team of experts at Uptech are more than aware that IT is a foreign language to most people, which is why they like to keep it simple. As they see it, Uptech’s priority is to keep its clients’ core business running smoothly and efficiently. The company values also speak for themselves, and include adding value, being customer focused, promoting teamwork, being approachable, building relationships, and embracing change, which is something that the ever-evolving IT industry is renowned for! Uptech understands the complexities and challenges that the IT industry presents to its clients, and it strives to simplify processes for them by leveraging its expertise and cuttingedge technologies to provide streamlined solutions. “One of our key approaches is to conduct thorough assessments and evaluations of our clients' existing systems and workflows,” elaborates James. “This enables us to identify areas of improvement and implement efficient processes that eliminate redundancies, reduce complexities, and enhance productivity.” The team at Uptech also ensures it stays ahead of industry trends and developments in order to ensure it can capitalise on emerging opportunities, with Cloud computing, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence are some of the areas where the firm actively invests in research and development. By embracing these trends, Uptech works to empower its clients with innovative solutions that optimise their operations and give them a competitive edge. Furthermore, a firm focus on user-friendly interfaces and intuitive designs makes it easier for clients to navigate and interact with their IT systems. Uptech’s commitment to user experience ensures that even the most complex processes can be simplified and made more accessible for all clients. “Ultimately, Uptech’s goal is to simplify the IT landscape for our clients, providing them with robust and efficient solutions that drive growth, improve efficiency, and enhance their overall business performance.” Turning challenges into opportunities is the name of the game at Uptech, and nothing can get in the firm’s way. It understands that in the dynamic world of technology, obstacles are inevitable. However, it views these challenges as stepping stones to innovation and growth. Best IT Support Company 2023 – Norfolk

First and foremost, the company fosters an internal culture of resilience and adaptability within the organisation. All teams are equipped with the skills and mindset to approach challenges with a proactive and solution-oriented mindset, and it actively encourages creative thinking, collaboration, and continuous learning to effectively tackle obstacles. Additionally, these challenges are also viewed as valuable learning experiences, with each hurdle presenting an opportunity to gain insights, refine strategies, and improve processes. Collaboration is another key aspect of Uptech’s approach to turning challenges into opportunities. The firm works closely with all of its clients, understanding their unique challenges and goals, and by fostering strong partnerships such as these, it can jointly identify solutions and transform challenges into growth opportunities. “In summary, our ability to turn challenges into opportunities lies in our mindset, adaptability, continuous learning, and collaboration,” James enthuses. “By embracing challenges head-on, we are able to innovate, improve, and provide our clients with transformative solutions that drive their success in an ever-evolving technological landscape.” In 2023, Uptech has experienced an exciting year of growth and innovation. The company has been focusing on two key areas: developing innovative solutions to automate tasks for SMEs and enhancing client support. This dual approach aims to streamline processes, improve efficiency, and provide added value to the firm’s clients. Recently, for its dedication, commitment and hard work, Uptech gained notable recognition in the IT Awards and was presented with the prestigious accolade of Best IT Support Company 2023 – Norfolk. But its quest is by no means over – Uptech has big plans in the offing, including developments for enhanced client support, innovations for task automation, the rollout of new and improved solutions, the testing of new security tools, increased investment in marketing and, last but certainly not least, further focus on its client-centric approach in order to find new ways to work with its clients. “We value our clients and aim to find new ways to work with them,” states James. “This may involve exploring collaborative partnerships, seeking client feedback for continuous improvement, and tailoring solutions to meet specific client requirements. By actively engaging with clients and understanding their evolving needs, Uptech strives to build strong, mutually beneficial relationships. “These initiatives demonstrate Uptech’s commitment to innovation, growth, and delivering exceptional value to its clients in the dynamic IT and cybersecurity landscape.” Contact Details Contact: James Fowler Company: Uptech Ltd Web Address:

8 | SME News IT Awards 2023 As a full-service agency specialised in network security and software development, Borderless Security is a respected name in the UK’s vast IT security landscape. The company leverages the abilities of technology experts to achieve its goal of fostering a safer digital world, partnering with the sharpest minds and most prestigious universities to offer a world class level of service. It connects leaders and decision makers with a dynamic network of security experts, who accurately deliver solutions to customers across the world. Borderless Security primarily offers a family of three security products through a comprehensive SaaS application. These include FilesDNA, a document and identity management system, UserDNA, a customised identity verification tool, and SignDNA, software for instant signature authentication. Customers can use these products individually if they wish, but they work together especially well. Whilst it specialises in secure networks and software development, Borderless Security understands that its broad approach gives it the edge over its competitors. The company does not just design secure networks and develop software; it also provides a professional service. This is why clients choose to work with Borderless Security. While designers, network professionals, and programmers are easy to find, it is difficult to find a company that has the experience to provide a professional, high-quality, and comprehensive service. Borderless Security does not just want to be another provider of a good service. Instead, it wants to foster real trust with its customers. To this end, it provides tailored solutions with personalised strategies that address their specific needs, supported by highly skilled cybersecurity professionals who deliver top-notch expertise. Its team have worked with a wide array of vendors, platforms, languages, and tools throughout the course of its various projects, meaning they have experience in many diverse areas across network, security, and software development. Borderless Security understands that cybersecurity can be complex and confusing. Because of this, it works to empower its clients by equipping them with tools that promote security education and awareness to help them build a strong culture of security within their organisations. The company also provides them with comprehensive solutions and user-friendly tools that can significantly simplify their security processes, making effective security more accessible to them. Furthermore, as cybersecurity regulations continue to change and evolve, Borderless Security ensures that its clients remain compliant with the relevant data protection and privacy laws, preventing them from facing penalties and legal troubles due to accidental non-compliance. To maintain its position of leadership in IT security, Borderless Security is dedicated to engaging in continuous innovation and collaboration. It capitalises on trends like cloud security, IoT, AI, automation, and compliance to deliver effective and streamlined security measures and retain a competitive advantage. As a forward-thinking company, Borderless Security is committed to continually evolving and adapting to meet the dynamic challenges of the IT security landscape. It continues to invest in research and development to provide clients with cutting edge solutions that effectively combat emerging threats. In this, it further caters to the needs of its clients by exploring new technologies. Customer satisfaction is at the heart of Borderless Security. Whilst it is constantly looking to improve its solutions and innovate to compete in a populated landscape, the company’s priority is always to consider the customer’s experience first and foremost. It constantly seeks feedback and works to improve its solutions based Established in 2013, Borderless Security Ltd. is a leading UK-based IT security company offering comprehensive solutions to businesses of all sizes, including cybersecurity consulting, managed security, penetration testing, training, and compliance services. Its goal is to secure clients’ digital assets and contribute towards the creation of a safer digital environment. Most Innovative SaaS Application 2023

on their experiences. Its staff are encouraged to always provide exceptional support and communication to customers. With such high standards for the services it provides, Borderless Security must maintain the best workforce for the task. It operates based on a culture of collaboration, ethics, and innovation. To facilitate this, its leading members model the behaviours they expect of their team, whilst providing them with training and recognition for their achievements. This encourages its employees to deliver excellence. When hiring new talent, Borderless Security seeks individuals with developed expertise in cybersecurity, value for integrity and transparency, strong problem-solving skills, a collaborative and innovative mindset, and a customer-focused approach. By seeking people with these qualities and fostering talent, the company invests in a team that is equipped to deliver the standard of service it aims to provide. As a result of its commitment to continuous improvement and innovation, Borderless Security’s flagship SaaS application, FilesDNA, has received a multitude of positive reviews on TrustPilot, with customers praising its convenient, usable, and effective nature. For example, one customer states, “This is a great solution for so many areas of business. My favourite is to send signature requests together with ID verification. This way I can do business with suppliers from abroad and have an absolute assurance about who I am dealing with. The practical use of a mobile app to sign and ID verify is a total TOP for me. I can only recommend.” In light of this, Borderless Security Ltd. has been awarded Most Innovative SaaS Application in the IT Awards 2023. We congratulate the company on this commendable achievement and look forward to seeing what it goes on to accomplish as it continues to innovate and lead the cybersecurity landscape. Contact: Mohammed Sahib Aldin Company: Borderless Security Limited Web Address:

10 | SME News IT Awards 2023 Best Emerging SME Marketing Agency 2023 - London Offerz.UK is a performance marketing agency that specialises in new customer acquisition for its advertising clients. It covers email, display, socials, and search marketing, in order to achieve the optimal blend for its customers. It provides consistent results for its advertisers in a compliant and transparent fashion. Offerz.UK Ltd delivers compliant, transparent and consistent growth for its advertising clients. It was set up to help put advertisers and consumers in touch, which it does by partnering with online brands who have access to their own subscriber databases. It calls these clients its partners, and as such they are all fully vetted, and capable of running marketing campaigns on an explicit consent basis. What this means is that the partner companies will only contact potential customers in the public realm with marketing communications promoting advertiser brands if positive consent has been provided for them to do so. Offerz’s partners help to promote its clients’ products and services. Offerz.UK manages over 20 online consumer databases. All its data is explicitly opted in to receive third-party electronic marketing communication from Offerz.UK advertiser brands. The UK subscriber base currently has over 22 million active subscribers. It sells this to clients on a cost per lead email marketing basis. It also offers cost per lead display marketing services, allowing for Offerz.UK partners with multiple online brands to provide onsite display/banner marketing opportunities. Its display partners receive circa 400K unique site visits per day across all the online sites. The services partner’s offer vary from lifestyle, to financial, to automotive online brands, through to mother & baby, fashion and home improvement sectors. Offerz.UK also provides a cost per lead social media marketing department covering Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. This provides an almost infinite access to an ocean of prospective clients. We all know and see social media interactions taking place on a daily basis, but the challenge Offerz rises to comes from being able to harness the social media channels and pin-point the optimal audience for clients. It does this with close attention paid to all the necessary current requirements, sending perfect marketing messages at the exact time that is identified as ideal to produce business sales for its partner advertisers. As far as its advertiser services go, Offerz.UK works with a crosssection of customers ranging from those in the automotive business to travel providers. Offerz.UK’s approach to lead generation ensures its customers are able to grow at the pace they so desire, and one which is perfectly aligned to them and their business. Offerz.UK focuses on advertiser ROI (Return on Investment), to ensure all of its campaigns are scaled up and optimised in line with its advertiser’s needs. The company (Offerz.UK) also works with a wide range of publishers who all own and operate well known online brands. Offerz.UK provides its advertisers – who come in all shapes and sizes - access to customers from the UK’s biggest online brands. Offerz.UK offers performance-based marketing to clients, by delivering quality customer leads to its UK based advertisers. It delivers performance-based lead generation across multiple verticals using a range of marketing methods. We will take a brief look at these now, in the following order: Display Marketing, Email Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Mobile Marketing. First up, Display marketing is an online advertising solution which includes banner adverts and rich media content. Display advertising utilises a combination of text, images, audio, video and animation to communicate an advertisement message for its client/products. Secondly, there is the Email Marketing solution. Email marketing is a cost-effective method of getting more customers to visit a company’s website, and hopefully be converted into potential leads. Effective email design can be used to increase the conversion rate. It is also important to remember that adding special offers and clear calls to action in an email newsletter can further entice potential customers to click and be converted into new leads. The third performance-based marketing factor to consider is that of Social Media Marketing. This is a process used to gain direct traffic for businesses via social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or any of the other numerous examples. Sale Scope at Offerz.UK uses both paid and organic marketing to deliver these potential customers to a partner client’s business website. The fourth option to consider is Mobile Marketing. This consists of an advertising solution which specifically targets handheld devices. The advertisements are optimised for mobile devices and are delivered via Offerz.UK’s third party marketing affiliate networks. Offerz.UK supplies all these performance models on a cost per lead, cost per click, cost per install, and cost per acquisition basis. It wants to help businesses to grow! The final way it is able to help companies or sole trader enterprises to grow is through its custom graphics and website design. Offerz.UK is not only able to offer its talented team of marketers for hire, but also its amazing in-house team of graphic designers, web developers and project managers. It can custom design a wide range of website solutions specifically tailored for lead generation. Its designers can also create compelling newsletter designs, banner ad designs, corporate branding and much more. So, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with this award-winning company today for all your company marketing requirements. As the recently announced Best Emerging SME Marketing Agency 2023 – London, it is sure to be able to offer opportunities that are not to be missed. Company: Offerz.UK LTD Web Address: Contact Name: Samir Cashmiri

12 | SME News IT Awards 2023 Best CRM & CXM Consultancy 2023 At Caldere Associates Ltd, we believe in the power of relationships. As a leading CRM and CXM consultancy, we've been awarded the prestigious "Best CRM and CXM Consultancy 2023" title. Our mission is simple: to provide small to medium-sized businesses with a personal, friendly, and honest consultancy service that puts the client's needs first. Our expertise lies in the Zoho platform, a robust suite of tools that we not only recommend to our clients but also use extensively in our own operations. From Zoho CRM to Zoho Desk for managing support requests, Zoho Campaigns for our email campaigns, and Zoho Cliq for team communication, we truly "eat our own dog food". This handson experience with the platform allows us to provide our clients with practical, tried-and-tested solutions. Our approach is unique. We don't just offer consultancy, implementation, training, and support services; we become collaborative additions to our clients' teams, helping them achieve their goals and ambitions. We've helped numerous businesses streamline their operations and achieve their goals using Zoho CRM, as evidenced by the success stories on our website. Our Managing Director, Ms Meeta Gargav, is at the helm of our operations. With her leadership, we've fostered a culture of inclusivity and collaboration. We operate with a relaxed and informal atmosphere and always try to work with a "flat hierarchy". This means everyone's opinions hold equal weight, and we grow our company and collaboratively service our customers. Quality assurance is a key component of our operations. We closely track and monitor all projects, ensuring constant communication between our internal and client teams. All our consultants, trainers, and support team members are certified and qualified by Zoho, providing high-quality service. We've built an excellent reputation with over 20 years of industry experience. But we're not resting on our laurels. We plan to expand our team and open new offices, continuing our mission to provide excellent CRM and CXM consultancy services. In conclusion, Caldere Associates Ltd is more than just a CRM and CXM consultancy. We're a partner, a collaborator, and a guide, helping businesses navigate the complexities of customer relationship management and customer experience management. We're proud of the work we do, and we're excited about what the future holds. Company: Caldere Associates Ltd. Contact: Vivek Gargav Website: Caldere Associates Ltd: Pioneering CRM and CXM Consultancy

Since inception, Nationwide Fleet Services has taken pride in being a privately-run provider of fleet support services, focusing on tyres for all vehicle types. The company’s journey has seen it build a network of independent suppliers across both the UK and Ireland, providing a truly nationwide service to customers. We speak to Nick Diment to learn more as the firm is recognised in the IT Awards 2023. Fleet & Vehicle Support IT Application of the Year 2023 - South East England Nationwide Fleet Services (NFS) is a head office/central billing function representing independent tyre dealers and vehicle repairers nationwide, offering services to fleet operators. NFS processes the booking request, manages the requirement, processes the supplier work completion data, gains authorisation from the customer and manages the central billing on both sides. The data collated is rolled into specific reports the customers use for their own MI and planning. NFS represents the largest owned fleet of vehicles in the UK for their tyre breakdown requirements and supports various other fleet operators with mixed fleets of vehicles by providing the centralised function. The company’s staff base operates from its very own NFS-branded call centre, where it can answer calls for help at any time. Over the years, the firm has continued to refine its expertise and knowledge, enabling it to meet customer requirements with ease – and to champion independent service providers. “We operate with short reporting lines,” elaborates Nick Diment, the firm’s Managing Director. “This ensures customers can get to engage with someone quickly and using the services of the independent providers means we deal with someone where the job means something.” When it comes to being innovative, NFS stands head and shoulders above the rest as it is the UK’s first independent fleet support provider to release an iPhone and Android application for vehicle booking and breakdown requests. This pioneering digitised fleet vehicle booking and breakdown service allows drivers to report their issues via their smartphone, making it simple, easy, and effortless to record an incident and keep fleets moving nationwide. As the industry is vast and complex, NFS works hard to simplify its processes for its customers as far as it can by automating as much of the function as possible. Its operating system offers prompts to the operators for the key information required and provides actions to take based on the different answers received back, plus NFS is exploring AI for future developments. Of course, a great company is nothing without its dedicated team of employees and NFS is certainly no different. Nick is quick to sing the praises of the loyal and hard working staff members that are behind the scenes. “Our internal culture is to work hard, listen, and remember we are providing a service and we should treat everyone as we would like to be treated,” he explains. “When onboarding new staff, we look for people who are adaptable because everything we do is the same – because the drivers/callers need assistance – but the type of issue is often different to the previous call. An empathetic approach is also important in order to provide that personal touch.” It is due to this commitment of the team, as well as the firm’s innovative IT application, that recently saw Nationwide Fleet Services gain recognition in the IT Awards 2023 and named with the prestigious title of Fleet & Vehicle Support IT Application of the Year 2023 - South East England. Now, Nick and the team are determined to continue providing quality products, as well as exceptional customer service, to its loyal customers – always turning challenges into opportunities at every corner. Contact Details Contact: Nick Diment Company: Nationwide Fleet Services Ltd Web Address:

14 | SME News IT Awards 2023 Most Customer-Focused Digital Transformation Consultancy 2023 - Scotland Gunn Stewart Solutions is a Scottish-based customer service and digital transformation consultancy with more than 20 years’ worth of experience in leading, supporting, and delivering transformation within the public and not-for-profit sectors in the UK. We find out more as it celebrates a prestigious win in the IT Awards 2023. Founded by Esther Gunn Stewart, an experienced Local Government Head of Service with significant experience in transforming organisations and delivering improved customer outcomes, Gunn Stewart Solutions (GSS) understands that every situation is different, meaning that one 'standard' consultancy approach will not work for everyone. GSS has found that some clients want the consultancy to act as a critical friend, providing advice, guidance, and mentoring behind the scenes – some want it to lead projects as independent external facilitators, others want a mix of both. “We work with clients in the way that works for them,” explains Esther. “The absolute core to our ethos is putting our clients and customers at the heart of everything we do.” With more than 20 years’ experience in multichannel operational management and leading customer experience improvement projects in the private and public sectors, Esther has a proven track record of delivering the highest level of customer service whilst identifying strategic and operational initiatives to deliver efficiencies and improve the customer journey. Being totally committed to understanding its customers' needs and putting the right support in place to deliver measurable benefits is just one of GSS’s unique selling points. Another USP which differentiates the consultancy from competitors is that it has worked in the sector and has extensive hands-on experience of successfully delivering change and transformation projects. “We have qualifications in service design, project management and facilitation but also have the real-life experience to back up the theory that those qualifications provide,” elaborates Esther. “We are specialists at remote working with clients. We can provide a blended service of face-to-face and online tools, utilising cloud-based working to get the most out of people's time.” Integrity and a passion for delivering excellent customer service underpins the internal culture at GSS, with the entire team believing in creating value for its clients and their customers. Much of the firm’s work is in the public sector and efficient use of public funds is something that Esther is truly committed to. “Often, our role with clients is being the person in the room that says the hard things that nobody else wants to say,” she tells us. “To get real change within an organisation, uncomfortable conversations have to be had, but those uncomfortable conversations can be had with respect and support. We will step up and help facilitate those conversations, moving projects through to successful outcomes.” Gunn Stewart Solutions works with a network of specialist consultants and suppliers, allowing it to pull together teams that are tailored to its clients’ needs in data, IT, CCaaS, SaaS and communications. The IT industry is vast and complex, and, at GSS, the team always follows the principles of people, processes and then technology. It often see clients wanting to get in on the latest trends or technology and it failing because they haven’t addressed the people and processes first. This is why GSS is careful to always spend time with clients to first understand what their problem is and then working to solve them with a holistic approach that may or may not involve the latest developments. “If the culture isn’t right or organisations have terrible processes, those processes wont magically improve by buying in the latest thing,” says Esther. “Having said that, in the local authority sector in particular, we are seeing more councils working towards low-code solutions that can be managed in-house and with increasing budget constraints, many are taking a more considered approach to investing in trends in technology.” Key to keeping up to date with trends and developments is maintaining relationships with leading IT industry suppliers, which Gunn Stewart Solutions does through providing an advisory service to suppliers and other consultants on the local authority sector. The Scottish Local Authorities Customer Services Managers’ Group was set up by Esther and the two co-chairs when Esther still worked in local government. The group was created out of individuals overcoming similar challenges together. The group is now facilitated by GSS and addresses challenges such as assessing new developments, sharing best practice, looking for potential joint working and bench marking. This now offers regular learning events in collaboration with a technology provider and a case study of one of their clients in a similar area, working groups on topics such as robotic process automation and runs an annual conference looking at ways of addressing challenges facing the sector. Recently, for its commitment and dedication to its clients and their customers in turn, GSS gained notable recognition in the IT Awards and was presented with the impressive accolade of Most Customer-Focused Digital Transformation Consultancy 2023 – Scotland. A feather in the cap indeed for Esther and the team. Now, as a bright future beckons, Gunn Stewart Solutions has started to provide more and more advice and support to SMEs looking to access the local authority sector – something it hopes to do more of in 2023 and beyond. Contact: Esther Gunn Stewart Company: Gunn Stewart Solutions Web Address:

Zhero provides end-to-end business cybersecurity and IT support to industry sectors across the UK and abroad. Founded in London in 2006, its clients consider Zhero as their bolt-on cybersecurity and IT support department. Zhero is proud to have worked alongside big names such as WeWork, Edmond De Rothschild, Energy UK, Smart Energy GB, and the Federation of Master Builders. The company also has an established partnership with City, University of London, collaboratively working on R&D projects with Prof Raj, Zhero’s Head of R&D and the university’s Director of the Institute for Cybersecurity. Zhero’s founder and MD, Izak Oosthuizen, is a cybersecurity thought leader, entrepreneur and self-professed IT nerd. He is a member of the Entrepreneur's Organisation London and was nominated for the prestigious UKTech50 award in 2023. Izak has made a name as a keynote speaker at events hosted by The Economist, N-Able, and London Market Forums (LMF). At the recent LMF 2023 Cyber Resilience Leaders Summit, he shared cyber-edge cybersecurity and risk mitigation strategies with contemporary pioneers such as Gary Brailsford-Hart, the Director of Information & CISO at City of London Police. Izak is also a best-selling Amazon author having co-authored ‘Cybersecurity NOW’ and ‘Adapt and Overcome’ with fellow IT aficionado, Chris Wiser. As somebody who has cybersecurity flowing through his veins, Izak is the personification of Zhero’s pledge to crush IT chaos and deliver better IT faster without compromise. Words out of his own mouth confirm this promise: “We love crushing your IT chaos and transforming your business.” To this end, Zhero is considered a one-stop-shop for the IT needs of SMEs and offers services that go way beyond cybersecurity. These include AI and automation, cloud solutions, 24/7 Helpdesk, data backup, regulatory compliance strategies, and employee training. The company enjoys an 87% client retention and is in the top 3% of IT providers in the UK. How do they do it? Zhero’s USPs – its secret recipe for success – are envied far and wide. The company applies a ‘Zhero Wait’ guarantee to its clients, all of whom are stunned by the speed at which IT issues are resolved. Each client is assigned a dedicated team consisting of an engineer, a technical specialist and an account manager with superlative technical know-how. The team works collaboratively with clients to develop bank-grade IT security, ensure compliance, and plan effectively for the future. Zhero’s AI-automated customer experience portal is managed by real humans, meaning ‘Zhero Wait’ without losing the personal touch. Behind the scenes and always on point is Zhero’s amazing team of A-players. These guys are all aligned with the same core values of understanding the needs of people, never giving up and being professional, proactive and customer-focused. Zhero can boast a unique people-first culture that thrives on innovation and enthusiasm. At the heart of every employee at the company is the desire to transform everything for the better. As technologies change and improve, so does Zhero. As such, investment in research, development and innovation is embedded in its mission. This includes empowering SMEs to focus on what truly matters by expertly tackling their complex IT issues. And while some technologies like AI are developing at breakneck speeds, Zhero is always cognisant of any inherent cybersecurity risks. In Izak’s words: “We need to embrace technological change but the basics remain the same – secure your network and protect and backup your data.” Zhero is committed to revolutionizing the SME sector by providing the services and products of a global market leader. The company strives to make the Zhero brand synonymous with excellence. It hope that one day when people think of IT solutions, their thoughts will instantly turn to Zhero. With cutting-edge technology and unparalleled customer service, Zhero sets a new benchmark for IT support and cybersecurity. Contact Details Contact: Anri du Toit Email: Company: Zhero Limited Web Address: Zhero is a London-headquartered technology provider specializing in IT support and cybersecurity for SMEs. Zhero was recently awarded the title of Best International SME IT & Cyber Security Support Company 2023. Let’s dig deeper and find out why the company is a well-deserved winner of this prestigious award. Best International SME IT & Cyber Security Support Company 2023

16 | SME News IT Awards 2023 Best Electronic Billing and Payment Software Solutions Provider 2023 The world has changed. And as technology has advanced, so has the demand to sign up for new services, manage accounts and make payments online and via mobile devices. Choosing the right partner to support your digital journeys can be a tricky road to navigate for even the most adept of businesses. One organisation that has mastered this art however and has excelled at removing these roadblocks for clients altogether is UK-based ebpSource Limited (ebpSource), our Best Electronic Billing and Payment Software Solutions Provider 2023. As a result of its worldwide reach, ebpSource can apply its team of experienced professionals to deliver globally renowned services that have long since made their mark on the electronic billing and payment industry. Since the market’s inception, ebpSource has been closely following every technological evolution, all whilst maintaining an unparalleled level of quality that stands as a testament to its award-winning status. From telecoms and financial services, to utilities, government, and outsourced service providers, ebpSource produces software solutions for all digital billing and payment needs. Not only does it manage digital billing and payment, but it also utilises its wealth of talent to offer e-document, e-contract, e-invoicing, and high-volume, centrally managed digital payment services to clients across the globe. Regardless of industry, ebpSource has the tools and experience at its disposal to make online and mobile billing and payment issues a thing of the past. With a primary client base of central and national banks, payment processors, leading telecoms and financial service providers, major IT organisations, and governments, ebpSource demonstrates its exceptional understanding of its field. It specialises in providing software infrastructures that are capable of underpinning and supporting long-term business growth, whilst simultaneously fostering customer service excellence. ebpSource acts as a beacon for companies looking for support in their digital billing, document, and payment journeys, and seeks out prolonged relationships built on mutual trust and understanding. It achieves this by ensuring that its services are 100% on-time and on-budget, whilst running as a completely independent, self-funded company. Its partnership approach towards its work is strictly long-term focused, which allows it to excel in supporting client needs and the bonds it forms with its customers. Nothing exemplifies ebpSource’s brilliance quite like its staff base. Due to the company’s internal structures and a flat and open management approach, unlike the majority of larger corporations, ebpSource is able instead to focus on individual brilliance. Every member of the team demonstrates an efficiency and passion for their work, which has ultimately resulted in a near-zero staff turnover within the company since its inception. Not only is the team consistently at the top of its game, but everyone is geared towards progressing themselves, not just as employees, but as people and team members too. Their dedication to ebpSource is beyond admirable, and yet ebpSource doesn’t take advantage of this loyalty, nor take it for granted. The company is incredibly aware of the fantastic collective that has been forged, something which is regularly highly praised by its clients across the globe. ebpSource embodies what it means to be unique.. It devotes itself to helping its clients navigate the complexity of the digital billing and payment space, helping clients through the management of their complex, high-value and high-volume digital processes, across all channels. All of this culminates in satisfied clients who are able to focus on building successful digital businesses, whilst ebpSource handles many of the tricky parts behind the scenes. ebpSource’s has been a front-runner in this digital world since the early days. There’s an unwavering determination to be the best of the best for its clients, and it’s this mindset that ignites such passion throughout its team. We can’t wait to see where it goes from here. Contact: Steve Wright Company: ebpSource Limited Web Address: