Daily Herald Case Study
Mitel beats out eight vendors vying to replace the Daily Herald’s 20-year-old phone system
Communications becoming a strategic advantage in the digital era
In today’s digital era, independent and locally owned newspapers are becoming increasingly rare. The Daily Herald’s strategic plans include continuing to expand in the market and offering Internet services to advertisers and printing publications.
Call center functionality and sound quality are top requirements
Prior to the evaluation process, Paddock Publications created a cross-functional, cross-department committee of 12 stakeholders. The group started by researching eight telephony companies, and then narrowed the list to Mitel, MaVi, and Mitel, before choosing the Mitel solution. Aside from superior call sound quality, robust Contact Center functionality weighed heavily on the team’s decision.
“The Daily Herald has two call centers. One handles subscribers and the other takes care of classified ads. The committee chose Mitel because the sound quality was superior and functionality of the software was more innovative and intuitive. That was important because we wanted the supervisors in our call centers to easily manage their departments, as well as access reports and call tracking data. Mitel excelled in those areas,” explains Stu Paddock III, SVP/Digital Technology and Information Systems for the Daily Herald.
Savings include both soft and hard costs
Employees have also given the new phone system high marks. User-friendly Mitel enables employees to manage their own phone features such as forwarding business phone calls to a cell phone, synching with their Microsoft Outlook calendar, and conferencing up to six people on a single phone line. Residing on the desktop, Mitel Communicator software also makes the phone directory easily accessible.
“Compared to other phones, even the physical Mitel device is superior in quality. With our old system, if I pulled away while on the phone, the phone would go flying off my desk because it was so light. This may sound like a small thing, but when it occurs often, it’s not,” comments Paddock.
Overall, the company has realized cost savings due to less reliance on expertise within the IT department. The intuitive administrative software eliminates the need for a dedicated telephony expert since anybody on the IT team can respond to special requests. The company also doesn’t have to bear the cost of a PBX infrastructure or the maintenance costs associated with those systems, which saves tens of thousands of dollars a year. Productivity increases and reporter mobility enhance customer service
Productivity is on the rise. Mitel speed dial capabilities have enabled the editorial department to save time. Reporters regularly call 100 police stations to collect crime reports from various communities. All of those phone numbers are now a click away on the speed dial system. In addition, voice mail to email enables newspaper staff in the field to listen to voice mails on their cell phones so they no longer miss important calls.
“THE COMMITTEE CHOSE SHORETEL BECAUSE THE SOUND QUALITY WAS SUPERIOR AND FUNCTIONALITY OF THE SOFTWARE WAS MORE INNOVATIVE AND INTUITIVE. THAT WAS IMPORTANT BECAUSE WE WANTED THE SUPERVISORS IN OUR CALL CENTERS TO EASILY MANAGE THEIR DEPARTMENTS, AS WELL AS ACCESS REPORTS AND CALL TRACKING DATA. SHORETEL EXCELLED IN THOSE AREAS.”
Stu Paddock III, SVP/Digital Technology
and Information Systems
Paddock Publications, Inc. is a diverse media company based in Arlington Heights, a Chicago suburb. The 142-year old company’s flagship product is the Daily Herald. With digital competitors on the rise, nearly every newspaper in the country has been grappling with how to sustain revenue.
In spring 2014, Paddock Publications deployed approximately 300 Mitel 230 phones in five locations and transitioned to voice over IP (VoIP) technology. Mitel’s superior call sound quality and the functionality of the robust software have resulted in cost savings and higher productivity.
- Superior call sound quality
- Access to reporting and realtime call data
- Intuitive, easy-to-use interface
- Significant cost savings