HM Electronics

Products and Services

SharePoint 2013
Knowledge Base Portals
Company Intranet & Extranet


Hospitality & Specialty Communications

Organization Size

200-500 Employees


US Based
Operates in 89 Countries Worldwide


  • Technical support data was scattered among different databases
  • Relevant data was either redundant or indistinguishable from outdated data
  • Installer subcontractors couldn’t independently access information
  • Clear taxonomy protocols within databases weren’t in place; information wasn’t easily searchable
  • The company lacked a shared portal for internal communications
  • SharePoint 2013 was implemented as a robust, all-inclusive software solution to address all of client’s needs
  • One Knowledge Base Portal for all data, divided up into 4 Knowledge Bases for each division of HME’s business
  • Company Intranet and Extranet
  • Taxonomy system rigidly built into the software
  • Complete training on all new software systems
  • Tech Support accuracy in accessing correct documents improved from 80% to 100%
  • Tech Support speed in accessing information decreased from 46 seconds to 13 seconds
  • Customer satisfaction, based on pre and post survey data, increased to exceed projected goals. Domestic installer satisfaction, based on pre and post survey data, increased to meet projected goals.
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HME Streamlines Systems and Processes for Faster Customer Service with SharePoint 2013

HM Electronics, Inc. (HME) manufactures state-of-the-art wireless communication, timer and software products for the quick service restaurant (QSR) industry and communication equipment for high school and colle-giate athletic programs. HME is set apart from the competition by their passionate commitment to customer service. This has earned HME the market share in the majority of industries they participate in around the world. Customers seek out HME for high-tech communication solutions, robust software and skilled, personable technical support.

HME subcontracts with installers. When on-site doing an installation, they had to call into HME tech support for wiring diagrams or manuals, which tech support would search for and email back to them. This process was time consuming and cumbersome on both sides.

If the installation subcontractors were having the same issues arise repeatedly, they would have to explain it anew with each different HME tech support person. Campbell says it was like reinventing the wheel every time.

The help desk would search for a document in order to help the customer, but often they would retrieve something out-of-date or irrelevant, as customers have different versions of the same products. They would find themselves spending precious time searching for the correct wiring diagram or manual, while keeping the customer waiting.

International distribution was experiencing the same prob-lems abroad. They needed a way to keep their information up-to-date and in-sync with domestic operations.

“At the end of the day we have an end-user product that is light-speed ahead of what we were using… FMT had a kind of a holistic approach. They had some very set guide-lines that they used. They had very specific markers … it was like a science.”

-BRADY CAMPBELL Project Training Manager, HME


HME reached out to FMT Consultants (“FMT”). FMT is known for having a proven set of methodologies and protocols, with clear goals set along the way. As Campbell attests, “FMT had a kind of a holistic approach. They had some very set guide-lines that they used. They had Very specific markers … it was like a science.”

FMT immediately began their analysis phase-the business of listening.

They sat down with HME managers and asked questions about how HME was organized and how they were currently accessing information. FMT spent a lot of time determining HME’s needs as part of coming up with a custom-tailored solution.

FMT established a success matrix by getting a baseline for how much time either their IT or customer service depart-ments were spending accessing the correct information and delivering it to the customer or installer. The plan was to return to the baseline after the project was completed in order to quantify the results.


In order to solve the document management side of things FMT implemented Microsoft SharePoint 2013. They created for HME a Knowledge Base portal-a cloud-based database with everything anyone could need. Within that one portal were four sub-portals, also called Knowledge Bases, for each division of HME’s business: end user tech support; international distributors; outside installation contactors; and customer service.

The outside installation contractors will use the external portal by logging in with their iPads or smartphones while being out in the field. They can search for and find all of the latest documents, including installation manuals, wiring diagrams, videos and photos. Within that Knowledge Base a message board calls their attention to a new piece of information, FAQ’s, as well as highlight the most recently searched documents.

The internal portals would operate the same way, with robust searchability, rnessage boards and FAQs.

Next FMT implemented their migration strategy.

This phase was all about spring cleaning. HME needed to comb through all of the databases where their information was stored, decide what needed to stay and what was out-dated or redundant, and then migrate it all into the SharePoint 2013 Knowledge Base-a huge task.

But they weren’t on their own. HME needed a strategy on how to organize content and train the end users. FMT worked with HME to define an information architecture and taxonomy. Then FMT trained the managers on how to tag each document, video, or photo with metadata according to the newly established naming conventions.

The managers could then train the staff on how to navigate the Knowledge Base— the “train the trainer approach” as Campbell called it.

FMT placed this taxonomy into a rigid structure that required each parameter be precisely entered before uploading new documents into the Knowledge Base. Nothing would ever get lost again.

Next HME invited subcontractors to the FMT training sessions so they could learn how to log into the external Knowledge Base and search for items tagged specifically for each customer.

“At the end of the day we have an end-user product that is light-speed ahead of what we were using… FMT had a kind of a holistic approach. They had some very set guide-lines that they used. They had very specific markers … it was like a science.”

-BRADY CAMPBELL Project Training Manager, HME


HME finds Microsoft SharePoint 2013 to be a success among its staff and subcontractors. Campbell says, “The program is very user friendly.”

HME installers can immediately locate the technical support documents they need by searching for it themselves. The help desk and tech support has an ongoing, open dialogue and a much faster way of navigating through the system in order to help customers. The customer service process is streamlined, efficient and much more accurate. Campbell says, “Having a searchable, internet-based application at our fingertips does wonders for our tech support and our customers.

And the project has paid off with staggering results. The goal was to have a 20% improvement for tech support call times from the baseline taken at the beginning of the project, which was 46 seconds per call. A decrease in tech support call time to 13 seconds resulted in an 70%+ improvement. Tech support accuracy in obtaining the correct documents exceeded goals as well: from a baseline of 80% accurate search results to now 100% accurate. Customer satisfaction and domestic installer satisfaction surveys taken before the project also met or exceeded goals. Finally, within the framework of Microsoft SharePoint 2013, HME was able to consolidate in-formation and reduce the number of documents.


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