Unified Communications Featured Article

Cloud-Based Unified Communications Enables Not-For-Profit to Provide Exemplary Care

May 31, 2016
By Special Guest
Mario DeRiggi, Executive Vice President, Broadview Networks -

The quality and efficiency of an organization’s communications with their customers are crucial to the business’ reputation, effectiveness and success. Businesses are turning to cloud-based unified communications (UC) solutions for a multitude of reasons: to control and reduce costs, manage complexity and increase productivity. Many of the most advanced features sought after, such as those that simplify mobility, are built-into cloud-based phone systems. Top providers include maintenance and free upgrades, so that remaining professional and connected to customers and colleagues is easier and more affordable even for the non-profit on a restricted budget.

Philadelphia not-for-profit Intercommunity Action Inc. (Interact) is a health care organization that provides health and senior services and various programs for people with intellectual and development disabilities. In order to efficiently fulfill their mission and meet the needs of the community, Interact’s 400 staff members frequently rotate and work from five locations, multiple satellite offices and community housing making it difficult for clients to reach the right employee. Interact needed a cost-effective communication solution that offered flexibility and mobility.

Mike Mann, Interact’s vice president of IT services serves as the only IT support for the entire Interact organization. Mann selected Broadview Network’s cloud-based communications system, OfficeSuite®, seeing that it allowed him to easily manage the system at each of the five locations through one centralized website MyOfficeSuite™. “Since using OfficeSuite®, I have been relieved of a lot of mundane, routine administrative chores because our employees can now do things for themselves. I can finally focus on moving the entire agency forward and tend to larger business challenges,” adds Mann.

“The key driver for looking for a new phone system was the need to unify all my sites under one system to make it easier for someone calling to get to the right person," said Mann. The organization struggled with maintaining its five individual premises-based phone systems at each location, and staff missed client’s calls between the different locations accompanied by different phone numbers.

Interact’s challenge of seamless client communications was solved when OfficeSuite® unified the organization’s communications and streamlined management for all its locations. “We are able to be more efficient by having one central receptionist through the Digital Receptionist feature so the calls are all transferred and received properly," says Mann. “It is much easier for our clients to get in touch with the appropriate staff member now."

Auto Attendants, or Digital Receptionists, presents an advantage for small businesses using cloud-based phone systems by reducing the number of routine calls that have to be answered by 25%, and ensuring incoming calls are all answered and directed to the appropriate employee. Interact’s employees now have the ability to pre-record a customized greeting for their clients that guarantees that a professional image with every single call is projected. Plus, Interact is significantly saving money by not having to designate employees to answer and re-direct incoming calls.

In addition to the technology challenges, Interact utilizes numerous contract employees who rotate locations and work varied hours. OfficeSuite® unified the organization’s communications so it could work more efficiently and provided the flexible features they needed to allow workers to share desk spaces, including extension-to-extension dialing, personalized voicemail accessible from any site location, and hot-desking. Hot-desking is a unique and especially useful feature for Interact employees who can turn any phone, at any location into their own by simply logging in with their pass code making all of their settings, contacts, voicemail and speed dials readily available. Every phone within the organization can be used by any employee whenever needed presenting convenience and cost-savings.

The power and flexibility of the cloud allow businesses of all sizes to unify communications in a cost-effective, easy-to-manage manner. All-inclusive, cloud UC solutions offer an affordable path to the latest technology and streamlined communications for a low monthly fee and often no capital expense. This gives businesses of any size, the opportunity to compete with even the largest of competitors, while improving their sales, operations and customer service. An increase in UC adoption in all markets over the next few years is forecasted, but all businesses can most certainly reap the benefits of having these solutions in place for their business’ communications now.

     Mario DeRiggi

About the Author: Mario DeRiggi joined Broadview Networks in 2013. He reports to Brian Crotty, Broadview’s Chief Operating Officer, and is responsible for leading the company’s revenue initiatives, including the direct, traditional agent and wholesale channels. Prior to joining Broadview, DeRiggi served as Executive Vice President of National Sales and Service at PAETEC Communications for more than 12 years. At PAETEC, DeRiggi was a key member of the executive team that built PAETEC into the $2B telecommunications carrier that was later acquired by Windstream Communications.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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