Wolseley UK is the operating subsidiary of Wolseley plc and is headquartered in Royal Leamington Spa, with another major office site in Ripon. It provides an unrivalled daily delivery service to almost 800 branches from four regional distribution centres, all backed by a national distribution centre at Royal Leamington Spa. The company invests heavily in information technology and supply chain software in order to maximise efficiency and minimise costs.

Capita has been working in partnership with Wolseley UK for over 16 years, and was appointed to deliver a new infrastructure solution to improve the customer experience and support revenue growth across over 620 sites throughout England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. 'Project Connect' represented an investment of close to £11m following a successful pilot rollout across 21 sites.

The Challenge

Capita has been working in partnership with Wolseley UK for over 16 years. Through our dedication to research and commitment to fully understanding our clients, we have become the strategic IT partner responsible for the development, planning, implementation and on-going IT support for the Wolseley business.

Wolseley’s vision for Project Connect was to help deliver an excellent customer experience by improving tools, branch experience, and access to information. Wolseley wanted to improve the overall customer buying process and increase sales revenue by replacing aging technology and infrastructure whilst also providing better access to information.

Wolseley’s Core Project objectives:

  • Replacement of aging technologies and business services to create a professional branch experience for customers and staff.
  • Provide branch staff with technologies and business services that would deliver a step change to enhance customer service - better telephones, screens, printers and networks.
  • Empower branch staff with information to make informed business decisions.


Wolseley’s requirements included a new VoIP telephony solution, thin clients, Wireless Access Points and refreshed cabling. In total, Capita upgraded 626 sites, delivering a range of services including project management, IT audits, off site pre-build, infrastructure (cabling and power) refresh, central platform configuration, site equipment deployment, wireless access point, IT system test, support, and contract management.

Capita provided the following services for Wolseley:

  • Site Infrastructure Changes – full on-site IT Audit including cabling, equipment rack deployment and power.
  • Central Services Changes – Cisco platform readiness assessment, implementation of Site dial plan, Site UCM/Unity configuration including Andtek integration, thin client management configuration, wireless Access Point provisioning.
  • Cisco Voice Deployment – configuration of Site specific Cisco UCM/Unity changes (extensions, voice mailboxes, hunt groups).
  • Site Equipment Deployment – LAN switches, router local voice configuration (SRST), access points, iGel, SIP ringer, VoIP equipment delivery and installation and technology familiarisation.
  • Delivery Completion – collection and supply of asset information (existing and new), deployment information supporting CMBD update, site sign off, documentation, transition to support readiness.
  • Disposal services in relation to Redundant Equipment (including WEEE disposal certification).
  • Project Services - project management, procurement, logistics, storage and site communications.


The vision for Project Connect was to refresh Wolseley’s ICT infrastructure whilst minimising risks. With the new investment in its IT, Wolseley has seen dramatic improvements in both customer interactions and business revenues. Capita’s ‘Project Connect’ solution significantly improved inter-branch communications across the entire Wolseley UK estate through the incorporation of VoIP and LAN technologies.

Via Project Connect, Capita has delivered the following benefits:

  • Increased revenues through removing ‘lost’ business opportunities from missed customer interactions.
  • Improved customer interaction, both on-premises and via telephone.
  • Uniform features and management interface.
  • Migration to a company-wide communications solution with cross-site functionality.
  • Replacement of legacy green-screen terminals with new thin client device technology, creating energy, management, and support cost savings.
  • Wireless network to enable mobile working within branches.

“Wolseley have worked with Capita to develop a 'Connected' solution that delivers our branch network with up-to-date technologies and business services that will deliver a step change to enhance customer service. The Capita Project team have worked seamlessly with our team to deliver a transformation programme of change across our trading branch estate that will support our future business objectives.

In particular, Capita’s commitment to delivering our objectives, and the flexibility shown throughout the programme, meant we were able to deal with the challenges that always arise in a project of this scale and complexity. The ‘Connect’ solution helped to significantly improve inter-branch communications across the entire Wolseley UK estate.”

Roger Connett, Head of IT, Wolseley UK