AFA Protective Systems

100-2,499 Employees

“Operationally, on an ongoing basis, Avaya IP Office is cost-efficient and easy to manage." 

Mark LaBua, Director of Branch Operations
AFA Protective Systems

 

 

Benefits

Improved Customer Service
Network Scalability
Reduce Cost

ALARM SYSTEMS FIRM BOOSTS RELIABILITY AND CUSTOMER SERVICE

Syosset, NY – When you’re responsible for the safety of lives and properties from Boston to Miami, the decision about what communication solution to deploy is more than important—it’s life-critical.

 
That’s the challenge faced by Mark LaBua, Director of Branch Operations for AFA Protective Systems, Inc., an industry leader in the design, installation and service of state-of-the-art fire alarm systems, burglar alarm systems, access control systems and CCTV systems. The company has headquarters in Syosset, 15 branch locations, and distributed contact centers in the Northeast and Southeast areas of the U.S.
 
According to LaBua, “We originally had an older Avaya system at corporate headquarters in Syosset and a collection of disparate systems among our 15 branch offices. The different systems didn’t really integrate with each other at all, and we had very high costs with several vendors performing maintenance. As newer approaches were being developed in the IT industry, we began to look for a solution that could overcome those disadvantages.”
 
In the process of looking at newer technologies to replace aging systems at the AFA corporate office and the company’s Boston branch, LaBua learned about the Avaya IP Office™ Platform. After trialing the IP Office solution at those two locations, AFA expanded it enterprise-wide and networked all company locations into a consolidated system that is centrally managed.

“The savings that we have achieved through system consolidation actually fueled our ability to upgrade dramatically to a very sophisticated communication system. Operationally, on an ongoing basis, Avaya IP Office is cost-efficient and easy to manage. It also provides a powerful platform for future growth and adding new technologies.”
 
 Mark LaBua, Director of Branch Operations
AFA Protective Systems
 

Redundancy and Flexibility for Business Continuity

While the main IP Office system is located at corporate headquarters in Syosset, New York, AFA leverages the architecture of Avaya IP Office Server Edition to provide redundancy at multiple disaster recovery sites on the East Coast. This is an essential strategy for ensuring business continuity.
 
The system is set up to handle an emergency outage at any location by automatically and seamlessly shifting calls to another office until the situation is resolved. As a result, calls are not missed and vital services are not interrupted.
 
On a routine basis, load balancing for the company’s contact centers is also handled automatically. When call levels are high at one office, calls are diverted to another, less busy office, so callers don’t have to wait in a lengthy queue. After regular business hours, calls to local branches are routed to the main regional contact centers, which operate 24/7 so that customers have access to trained agents at all times.
 
“When you’re in the life safety industry, the kind of performance that we get from our Avaya IP Office system is essential,” LaBua comments. “We felt fortunate to find an affordable, high quality solution for midsize business that can provide the redundancy, flexibility, scalability, and state-of-the-art communication features that we now have with Avaya IP Office.”
 

Contact Center Capabilities Improve Customer Service

AFA has been pleased with the contact center functionality available through Avaya IP Office. The AFA contact centers utilize IVR query and queuing, with screen-pop capabilities for agents to have customer information immediately accessible on-screen. The company has also deployed call recording for quality monitoring and training. These important functions help ensure that agents are well-equipped to provide exemplary service to customers.

Call volumes and flows are monitored on a cradle-to-grave basis. Multichannel functionality for voice, email and web chat is also available. “The contact center capabilities of IP Office are very impressive, very high-end,” LaBua states. “I think it’s the ideal choice for a midsize business because it’s very powerful, yet easy to set up, manage and maintain.”

 

“When you’re in the life safety industry, the kind of performance that we get from our Avaya IP Office system is essential. We felt fortunate to find an affordable, high quality solution for midsize business that can provide the redundancy, flexibility, scalability, and state-of-the-art communication features that we now have with Avaya IP Office."
 
Mark LaBua, Director of Branch Operations
AFA Protective Systems
 

Enhanced Connectivity and Productivity for Office and Mobile Staff

AFA uses Avaya one-X® Mobile and Avaya one-X® Portal with the Avaya IP Office Platform, and the results have been dramatic. “We all appreciate the mobility system that transfers office calls to our mobile phones when we’re out of the office,” LaBua says. “The system also enables us to use all the features of our office phones onour mobiles. As a result, we stay connected and fully engaged on a teamwork and collaboration basis, no matter where and when we are working.”
 
The mobility feature set is valuable for the AFA sales people because it makes communications faster, easier and more reliable—important features for business productivity and growth. LaBua praises the voicemail-to-email functionality. “With all the traveling that I do, it has been a godsend. It’s fantastic because I don’t have to remember to call in for my messages. I proactively receive them on email, and I can manage them very easily.”
 
LaBua and his colleagues also value other frequently-used capabilities such as:
 
      •Hot desking, which allows them to plug into the networked phone system from any phone at any location on the network
      •Having complete visibility for all individuals in the enterprise directory and their status (e.g., on or off the phone, not                     available)
      •All networked sites sharing the same applications and functionalities so there is no awkward, time-consuming learning                 curve when employees move from office to office
 

Simplified Management + Scalability = Savings

Instead of providing management and maintenance for diverse systems at different locations through multiple vendors, AFA now manages the entire enterprise system from one centralized location. The IT team can perform most service remotely and deploy new applications easily across the network. Savings in time and staffing are significant.
 
“The savings that we have achieved through system consolidation actually fueled our ability to upgrade dramatically to a very sophisticated communication system,” LaBua explains. “Operationally, on an ongoing basis, Avaya IP Office is cost-efficient and easy to manage. It also provides a powerful platform for future growth and adding new technologies. We look forward to exploring more of its capabilities such as video conferencing and other features.”
 
LaBua and his team have been impressed with the service they have received from Avaya and their Avaya reseller. “Our Avaya reseller did a great job for us. Their vast knowledge and evident experience was extremely valuable right from the design phase through the implementation. They continue to support the system and us as a business in a world-class fashion. It has also been very clear that, as the manufacturer, Avaya itself provides tremendous support to its resellers and customers so that we get exactly what we need, both for our current business challenges and as a platform for the future.”
 

ABOUT AFA PROTECTIVE SYSTEMS

AFA Protective Systems, Inc., was the country’s first central station fire alarm company, established in 1873. AFA is an industry leader in the design, installation and service of state-of- the-art systems including: fire alarm systems, burglar alarm systems, access control systems and CCTV systems. Fully automated and redundant central stations operate twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week to monitor approximately 39,000 AFA subscriber locations and approximately 10,000 locations for customers of approximately 130 alarm dealers who do not have their own central stations. Alarm-related services are provided to the commercial, financial, industrial, governmental and residential markets. The majority of the Company’s revenues comes from the sale and installation of specialized alarm systems, including sophisticated high-rise fire and life safety systems which the Company designs and installs to meet proliferating fire and life safety codes.

CUSTOMER PROFILE
AFA Logo
  • Headquarters:

  • United States

  • # Employees:

  • 440

AFA Protective Systems, Inc., was the country’s first central station fire alarm company, established in 1873. AFA is an industry leader in the design, installation and service of state-of- the-art systems including: fire alarm systems, burglar alarm systems, access control systems and CCTV systems. Fully automated and redundant central stations operate twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week to monitor approximately 39,000 AFA subscriber locations and approximately 10,000 locations for customers of approximately 130 alarm dealers who do not have their own central stations. Alarm-related services are provided to the commercial, financial, industrial, governmental and residential markets. The majority of the Company’s revenues comes from the sale and installation of specialized alarm systems, including sophisticated high-rise fire and life safety systems which the Company designs and installs to meet proliferating fire and life safety codes.

What our Customers are saying
“When you’re in the life safety industry, the kind of performance that we get from our Avaya IP Office system is essential.”

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  • Mark LaBua

  • AFA Protective Systems, Inc.