EmployBridge Case Study
Staffing firm standardizes its phone system with ShoreTel Sky and realizes dramatic improvements in responsiveness
Lots of locations, multiple phone systems and carriers
Staffing firm EmployBridge has 700 employees in 143 locations throughout the U.S. Due to its numerous locations, managing the analog phone systems and multiple carriers was a challenge. Obtain modern technology without a large capital expenditure
Since each of EmployBridge’s 143 locations had its own phone carrier and brand and hodgepodge of phones, managing the system was expensive and time-consuming. Adding to the frustration, the phones were rather basic, offering little in the way of reporting or customizable features. The company was paying for extra phone lines to set up what it called “hunt lines” so incoming calls during peak hours could roll to these added lines until they were picked up.
“The phones were consistent in how they were set up, but there was no cohesiveness when it came to the actual phones or carriers,” says Heather Reck, telecommunications manager at EmployBridge. “Phone administration at the branches was a mess because there was no easy or cost-effective way to manage moves, adds, or changes or the various carriers. Branches simply avoided updating the system.”
When the economic downturn forced many companies to become more efficient, EmployBridge management developed new workflows to alleviate as much administrative burden on the offices as possible. A new, standardized phone system would make centralizing processes achievable, but dedicating a large upfront investment in new equipment was financially impossible.
In addition, EmployBridge was preparing to roll out a new Microsoft CRM solution for all of its branch offices and needed a centralized place to answer employee questions about the new system. It didn’t have the time or the funds to hire staff or buy new phones and phone lines for a help desk queue (call center).
The company determined that centralizing the phone systems with a VoIP platform would not only help employees be more productive, but it could potentially offer significantly more functionality without adding cost.
ShoreTel Sky offers scalability within budget
After considering several vendors, EmployBridge chose the ShoreTel Sky hosted VoIP platform. This enabled the organization to: avoid a large capital outlay to obtain modern, standardized technology for all company branches and home office employees; quickly establish a help desk queue for the new CRM launch with no additional cost; and eliminate hunt line costs.
The phones also offer valuable tools such as an online portal to enable administrators to quickly make add/move changes to keep branches updated, voicemail-to-email transcription, and rich reporting capabilities.
The reporting features are used to track call volumes, hold times, length of calls, and other relevant metrics to show executives how Reck’s team is supporting her customers, the branches. Management teams use these data to make critical decisions about staffing and training needs.
“The scalability of ShoreTel Sky platform enables us to customize our phone system as our business changes,” says Reck. “With ShoreTel Sky, we can let the technology meet the business need.”
EmployBridge experiences increased productivity, better efficiencies, and an improved customer experience
Employbridge has seen dramatic improvements in its responsiveness to customers, particularly when its help desk call center went live with the CRM rollout. Even the IT executives took notice. “It allowed us to take every branch live at once and saved us a lot of travel. The call center handled 30 percent more calls and reduced answer times from an average of 54 seconds to only 25 seconds,” says Chris Loope, chief information officer at EmployBridge.
“IT ALLOWED US TO TAKE EVERY BRANCH LIVE AT ONCE AND SAVED US A LOT OF TRAVEL. THE CALL CENTER HANDLED 30 PERCENT MORE CALLS AND REDUCED ANSWER TIMES FROM AN AVERAGE OF 54 SECONDS TO ONLY 25 SECONDS.”
Chris Loope, CIO
Reck is most impressed with the flexibility and scalability of the new ShoreTel Sky platform. “With the analog phones, we ordered a phone line for each person. As volume increased, we didn’t know what to order for the growing infrastructure and customers often got a busy signal until we added more phone lines,” she explains. “With ShoreTel Sky, we can grow indefinitely without our customers getting a busy signal. Plus, I don’t have to endure managing a phone carrier anymore.”
The ShoreTel Sky phones have helped EmployBridge consolidate and centralize as it becomes more efficient and productive. It has also given EmployBridge the ability to keep track of home office and remote employees better because they are each assigned one number, despite their location. The field employees are sending rave reviews of the new phone system, and IT executives deemed the ShoreTel Sky implementation the best project of the year.
One interesting success story came from a client in Dallas needing EmployBridge to quickly staff its expanding office. Qualified applicants suddenly inundated the EmployBridge branch. The ShoreTel Sky Phone Assistant showed them that every available representative was on the phone, but because of the volume of calls, they were unable to personally answer every inbound call.
EmployBridge enlisted its Tennessee call center to help return applicant calls left in voicemail, but because the area code was out of state, most applicants did not answer their phones. Thinking quickly, the EmployBridge branch manager obtained a block of local Dallas phone numbers for the Tennessee call center representatives to use.
“Within a few seconds, we were able to expand our local staff with resources hundreds of miles away. ShoreTel Sky gives our branches creative power to achieve their own personal and professional success,” says Reck.
Wagner states, “ShoreTel Sky has improved our business processes by giving us the capability to track employee metrics. We have experienced significant cost savings over premises-based phones and other VoIP systems through a more attractive pricing structure. Finally, the customer service has been impressive because of ShoreTel’s expertise and responsiveness. This was the most painless technology transition I have experienced.”
“WITHIN A FEW SECONDS, WE WERE ABLE TO EXPAND OUR LOCAL STAFF WITH RESOURCES HUNDREDS OF MILES AWAY. SHORETEL SKY GIVES OUR BRANCHES CREATIVE POWER TO ACHIEVE THEIR OWN PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL SUCCESS.”
Heather Reck, Telecommunications Manager
- Managing its analog phone systems and multiple carriers was a challenge. A new, standardized phone system would make centralizing processes achievable, but dedicating a large upfront investment in new equipment was financially impossible.
- ShoreTel Sky, a hosted VoIP platform, enabled the organization to obtain modern, standardized telephony technology for all company branches and home office employees without a large capital expense.
- Reporting metrics and tracking tools
- Improved responsiveness
- Considerable cost savings
- Minimal time needed for management