Hydradyne LLC

Challenges

  • Deploy wireless solution across numerous locations in large geographic area
  • Enable warehouse functions to operate wirelessly
  • Establish centralized network management for nimble IT team

Results

  • Guest network available at all locations
  • Supply chain and inventory operations operate with wireless scan gun devices
  • HiveManager Online enables IT team to set up new office locations easily, without added costs

Industry Leader for Hydraulic Manufacturing and Distribution Deploys Aerohive for Greater Efficiency

Founded in 1968, Hydradyne is an industry leader in fluid power sales and service, and one of the largest distributors in North America for the hydraulic industry. The company offers components, systems, repair and field service from its 30 locations throughout the Southern United States and has over 600 employees. The company is responsible for fabrication, design and engineering and is headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas with revenues of approximately $250M.

The company recently expanded a relationship with Parker Hannifin and is one of their largest distributors. The Hydradyne distribution network includes the retail outlet Parker Stores and Truck Hydraulic Centers. Aside from the Parker product line, Hydradyne represents over 50 additional motion control manufacturers and provides service to over 8,000 customers.

The Challenge

Hydradyne recently moved its headquarters from New Orleans to the Dallas-Fort Worth area and needed to build its wireless network from the ground up as it moved into a new building. At the same time, the company changed some of its warehouse operations and deployed hand held scan guns to move inventory back and forth and needed to operate this technology wirelessly.

The company needed a solution with simplified management and control. Hydradyne has a clear growth strategy by acquisition and as the company acquired new companies and distributors, the IT team would rely on a system that could easily roll out to new offices. Managing individual access points didn’t make sense and would be cumbersome. With a small IT team, the company needed a controller- less solution that would provide better ease of management.

Solution

When Hydradyne began evaluating network solutions, it quickly ruled out Cisco since it seemed that it would take Cisco-specific engineering expertise to get the solution up and running, costing the company additional time and expense. Hydradyne also considered Ruckus, but chose Aerohive for its ease of management and installation. The company also appreciated that the Aerohive access points did not require a large footprint and had dual zone coverage.

Hydradyne deployed Aerohive AP120, AP121, AP141, AP330 and AP350 access points at all locations, including its warehouses and headquarters offices. In addition, Hydradyne has several Aerohive BR200 branch routers and an Aerohive SR2024 switch to function as its disaster recovery cluster.

Branch routers are being prepared to send to offices of new acquisitions to easily allow employees to connect to the corporate network. The wireless network and internal SSIDs connect back through an MPLS network, giving the company extra security controls as well. The company has a guest network with captive web portal and a separate employee network.

Hydradyne uses HiveManager Online for simplified cloud-based management across all its locations. According to Mike O’Neil, Director of Information Technology, “HiveManager Online is a godsend. I can see our environment across the board in one pane of glass and can easily correct or troubleshoot issues, and I no longer have to travel to set up new locations. The increased efficiency HiveManager has given Hydradyne has saved us time, cost and headaches.”

Results

Before deploying Aerohive, Hydradyne did not have any wireless warehouse functions, and employees carried paperwork manually through the warehouse. Now, Symbol scan guns are used to process shipping and receiving functions and to move inventory back and forth. The Symbol scan guns also sync with Epicor wholesale distribution ERP software for optimal supply chain management.

Retail store outlets, located in warehouse locations and operating as Parker Stores, now have access to Wi-Fi for employees and guests. Executives can now connect seamlessly to the corporate network when visiting any company location. At office headquarters, large sales training meetings use WePresent software for wireless interactive presentations.

As the company has grown, it has needed to assess security concerns with network access. Enterprise features from Aerohive have enabled the company to better address concerns, put in measures for tracking, and allow control over BYOD and corporate- owned devices. Reporting features in HiveManager have been a huge help to Hydradyne, as well as the bridge mode features in Aerohive access points to allow facilities without cabling to connect to the network.

“The simple fact is that Aerohive is easy to manage, easy to partner with and easy to deploy. The customer service team took us under their wing and in a week we had SSIDs in place and wireless warehouse functions working. Aerohive is a great solution partner to add to our portfolio of vendors and will help us achieve our goals today and into the future,” explained O’Neil. “While the hydraulics industry might not be known for early technology adoption, we made a great decision for our wireless infrastructure. Aerohive was easy to implement and has given us greater efficiency, provided cost savings and increased mobility.”

Fluid Network Operations

Hydradyne is looking ahead to deploy Aerohive at new offices as it expands operations in North America. Other potential projects include setting up wireless workstations in warehouses to access more files and data wirelessly, and to print wirelessly from warehouse scan guns. Outdoor wireless access may be helpful down the road as the company expands its wireless capabilities to best meet its needs.

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