Avaya IP Telephony Solution for Small, Medium Businesses Helps Nonprofit Health Center Improve Service It Delivers to People With Diabetes
Lifestyle Center of America selects secure, reliable Avaya IP Office to power its customer contact center for better service, consolidate operations and reduce costs
24-Apr-2006, BASKING RIDGE, N.J. - When Lifestyle Center of America (http://www.lifestylecenter.org) needed to improve the service it delivers to clients with Type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the condition, the company turned to an Internet Protocol (IP) telephony solution from Avaya (NYSE:AV), a global leader in business communications applications, systems and services.
Based in the Arbuckle Mountains of Oklahoma, the center operates a nonprofit medical health resort where guests work with board certified physicians to make the kinds of lifestyle changes that can help them improve their health and well-being. The organization also offers phone-based health coaching and a home-based Stopping Diabetes Program that is available nationwide.
Using IP telephony enables the center to link home-based workers in Texas to the new Avaya communications network, allowing them to be a seamless part of the contact center operation and providing them with all the features and functions they would have if they were based at the company’s Oklahoma headquarters. The contact center is powered by Avaya IP Office, a flexible, secure and easy-to-use converged voice and data system designed especially for small and medium businesses.
“Previously, our call center was located in a separate office with its own phone system,” said Sid Lloyd, president and CEO of Lifestyle Center of America. "We’ve been able to reduce our costs by about $75,000 annually by moving the center to our main campus, closing our separate office and using a single, consolidated phone network.
According to Lloyd, the call center is Lifestyle Center of America’s lifeline. “That’s where clients call in for information on our program, and our team of health consultants begins to work with them to determine how best to stop the progression of their diabetes and restore their health,” he said. “Avaya has a huge footprint in the call center market, and their solution was a good fit for us. We evaluated several options, but the Avaya solution was head and shoulders above the rest of them.”
The importance of phone contact with clients makes business continuity an important issue for the center as well.
“If our phones go down, we’re dead,” said Lloyd. “Since we’re located in a rural community in central Oklahoma, it’s not at all unusual for a rancher with a backhoe to accidentally cut our T1 line when he’s out mending fences. With the failover features of Avaya IP Office, inbound and outbound calls automatically roll over to a local trunk line if our T1 goes down so that we can continue to provide uninterrupted service.”
To reinforce the lifestyle changes clients make while visiting the center’s resort, the organization uses the built-in conferencing capabilities of IP Office to host monthly calls for those enrolled in its “SuccessCare” program. The organization previously paid nine cents per minute per person for a national conference calling service. By using Avaya IP Office and routing conference calls over its T1 line instead, it now can support up to 23 concurrent calls at a cost of less than two cents per minute each.
The company’s team of receptionists now uses IP Office Softconsole, which is a PC-based software application that allows them to choose either the computer keyboard or phone to answer and route calls.
“It’s a real time-saver,” said Michelle Merisanu, administration team leader, who supervises the receptionists. “If you are in the middle of typing a letter when a call comes in, you can simply click on your computer screen to answer it. Also, our main receptionist is a multitasker with several additional duties, some of which take her away from her desk. With a wireless headset, she can simply press a button and take the call regardless of where she is.”
An Avaya IP Office solution, recommended and powered by global network provider AT&T is meeting the Center’s needs. Designed specifically for small to midsize businesses, Avaya IP Office is a reliable, secure, high-performance voice and data server that easily links branch offices and remote workers for seamless and cost-effective communications. Included with each system is a contact center application that now is helping the center to serve its growing base of clients.
The center said it plans to Beta test the latest release of Avaya IP Office multimedia software, which will allow visitors to its Web site to chat live over the Internet with a health consultant. The organization also plans to integrate its Goldmine® CRM application with Avaya IP Office so that incoming caller IDs can be used to pull account data from the company’s database and generate a screen pop for agents.
Avaya Global Services installed IP Office for the Center and is providing ongoing maintenance and support.
Avaya Inc. designs, builds and manages communications networks for more than 1 million businesses worldwide, including more than 90 percent of the FORTUNE 500®. Focused on businesses large to small, Avaya is a world leader in secure and reliable Internet Protocol (IP) telephony systems and communications software applications and services.
Driving the convergence of voice and data communications with business applications - and distinguished by comprehensive worldwide services - Avaya helps customers leverage existing and new networks to achieve superior business results. For more information visit the Avaya Web site: www.avaya.com.
Note to editors: Lifestyle Center of America’s Avaya business communication system includes:
*Avaya IP Office IP412, with Compact Contact Center, PhoneManager Pro, VoiceMail Pro, and Softconsole.
*Approximately 100 Avaya telephone sets, including the Avaya 5400 series and Avaya 5600 series telephones.
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