Cable Scope Rapidly Upgrades to Hosted VoIP Phone System with No Downtime
“The fact that we successfully transitioned to a new phone system during our busiest time of the year speaks volumes about ShoreTel.”
April Picon, Operations Manager, Cable Scope
Challenge: Find Better Phone Solution before Existing Contract Expires
Since 1988, Cable Scope has been providing media buying services for advertisers who want to leverage Hyper-Local Advertising utilizing Spot Cable. Cable Scope specializes in complex campaigns with multiple targets in numerous markets over various platforms. Projects range from stewardship of nationwide packaged-goods rollouts and presidential candidates, to coordinating co-op automotive dealer groups with manufacturers support and Big Box Retailers who think locally.
Cable Scope was facing the perfect storm: its antiquated Asterisk PBX system serviced by XO Communications was obsolete, its contract with XO Communications was about to expire, the company’s only IT person was leaving and they were entering into their busiest season. The phones lacked even basic features like providing a company directory and there was no way to support the aging technology. “The phones were extremely limited in what they offered; we couldn’t change extensions, forward calls, park calls or see if someone was on their phone before transferring a call,” says April Picon, operations manager at Cable Scope. “I spoke with six tech companies about hiring a new IT support person and they suggested we research a hosted solution instead. Our service contract was expiring in only weeks, so I had to make a decision quickly.”
Solution: ShoreTel Provides Added Functionality with Less Maintenance – On Schedule
Picon was able to extend her contract with XO Communications for three weeks. ShoreTel was the most recommended hosted VoIP phone provider so Picon invited a sales representative to demonstrate the solution. “We liked ShoreTel’s business model and the idea that we could manage the phone system in a user-friendly way through the administrator portal without the need to hire an IT specialist,” explains Picon. “It was obvious that a hosted VoIP solution would not only end up saving us money in headcount requirements, but it would offer us more features, better reliability and less maintenance. ShoreTel assured us they could get us transitioned before our XO contract expired.”
Once the contract with ShoreTel was in place, the ShoreTel account manager began working with XO to port the phone numbers. After weeks of near constant communication with XO, the ShoreTel account manager was able to get the numbers ported without service interruption. “Even though our account manager was proactive in keeping me updated with his progress, I didn’t know what to expect when I came into the office the morning after our XO contract expired,” says Picon. “All I knew was that if we didn’t have working phones, it would be detrimental to our business. As our account manager promised, however, the ShoreTel phones were up and running within an hour. I know we couldn’t have done it without his hard work and dedication.”
Cable Scope is utilizing several functions from its ShoreTel phone system, such as an online company directory and ShoreTel Sky portal. The web-based interface gives Picon access to various call metrics and administrative capabilities like setting up call groups. Employees, particularly those working remotely, use the Find Me Follow Me feature that enables them to program their desk phone to ring a certain number of times before ringing their cell phone, then home office phone so they rarely miss a call. ShoreTel Sky Scribe voicemail to email transcription sends voicemails as a .wav file in their email inbox and similarly, ShoreTel Sky Fax sends incoming fax images to their inbox, enabling the office to toss their bulky fax machine.
Phone Assistant allows anyone to quickly see who is on the phone or available, a feature particularly beneficial to the receptionist who had required a bird’s eye view of the office floor. Incoming calls are routed to a live person instead of being transferred to a voicemail.
Results: Increased Flexibility, Productivity and Mobility with Top-Notch Service
ShoreTel helped Cable Scope smoothly transition from an outdated phone system that required specialized personnel to maintain, to a virtually maintenance-free hosted VoIP system with rich features and user control. Employees are more productive as many tasks can be done faster and easier. Even better, because of the VoIP platform, the staff can for the first time, travel and work from home if desired.
“Based on negative experience with other tech companies in the past, I was surprised how hard our ShoreTel account manager worked for me,” admits Picon. “I thought I’d have to stay on top of everything, but he was so proactive, I rarely had to call him and could instead focus on my business initiatives. The fact that we successfully transitioned to a new business phone system during our busiest time of the year speaks volumes about ShoreTel.”