Avaya IP Office Proves Ideal for the Small-to-Medium Sized Security Business
Trust Security & Fire Watch is a Maryland-based security company that has experienced tremendous growth since its inception eight years ago. This family-owned business that started with eight employees and one short-term, part-time security contract has grown to nearly 100 employees and three office locations. Trust Security provides armed and unarmed services ranging from fire watch to mobile, residential, event, building, hotel and construction site security.
Private security is a highly competitive business. Trust Security sets itself apart from competitors in several ways. For example, Trust Security guards must complete a security officer training course, despite the fact that neither Maryland or Washington DC require it. In addition, Trust Security performs extensive background checks on employees and promotes alert and attentive security personnel by setting strict limits on consecutive work hours.
Having said that, there is one differentiator, more important than all the others, according to Vice President, Rudo Robinson: simply answering customer phone calls.
“When you call most security companies, you get voicemail, an answering service or no answer at all. They may return your call in a day or so,” Robinson explains. “One thing you can count on when you use Trust Security is that you can talk to a live security supervision any time, day or night.”
Robinson switched from an unreliable and complex Voice over IP (VoIP) solution to Powered by Avaya IP Office™. Powered by IP Office has provided Trust Security with the dependable solution it needed to
run its business at its best.
Avaya Powered by IP Office really supports our business model by serving an essential need.
VP, Trust Security & Fire Watch
Finding the Right Solution
“When we first started our company we understood that security is a 24-hours business. Criminals don’t stick to a 9 to 5 schedule and clients deserve the comfort of knowing that we are there for them whenever they need us,” says Robinson. “As a result, we needed to be available to our clients 24 hours a day.”
The challenge Trust Security faces in offering around-the-clock customer service is that its after-hours manager on duty is not in a physical office location, and that person varies from day to day.
“The duty period varies and one of us is on call at different times on different days. For example, after 5:00pm Wednesday through Friday, calls to the main number forward to me. Someone else covers the other weekdays and Saturday is split between two people,” explains Robinson. “What we needed was a phone system that could be programmed to go to different people at different times of day.”
Unfortunately, the VoIP solution Robinson was using didn’t meet those needs. While the system was able to fulfill Robinson’s requirement for forwarding phone lines to different people at different times and dynamically adjusting to the manager on duty, the process was cumbersome.
“With the previous systems, switching over was very difficult, there were too many steps,” says Robinson. Robinson also found the system unreliable, resulting in “phantom calls” where the phone would never actually ring.
“A lot of times, we didn’t even know there was a problem with the phone system until a customer told us our phones weren’t working,” says Robinson. “It was a killer, because if my phones don’t ring, I’m losing money by not capitalizing on opportunities.”
When Robinson reached out to the company to report these issues, he received subpar customer service.
“Not only was I having to call customer support far too often, when I did I would end up getting passed off from one department to the next. I never could get a problem solved in one call. Now with Avaya and DVX, it’s one call, problem solved. That’s important because I’m running a business, I don’t need the headache of having to make all these calls.”
Even when Robinson did reach someone who could solve his problem, it still often took several days for the solution to be implemented. In addition, billing was an issue with the previous system.
Avaya IP Office easily and affordably scales as Allo Transport’s communications needs change, easily expanding to 3,000 users, at a single site or up to 150 locations.
The contact centre technology has helped Allo Transport route calls more intelligently to improve first contact resolution, and has greatly contributed to strong customer satisfaction among Allo’s client base.
With screen pop-up call history on every customer, the contact centre efficiently manages incoming taxi bookings and enquiries. Based on the information from the caller, the contact centre staff will locate the nearest taxi drivers on the map to arrange a quick and efficient service to their clients.
Staying Ahead of the Competition
Today, Avaya IP Office gives Trust Security the ability to reliably answer its phone calls, resulting in a leg up on the competition.
“We were having a very hard time finding a VoIP system that gave us the functionality we needed and worked in a dependable way,” explains Robinson. “As I’ve said, a big part of my business comes from answering the phone, so we don’t take communication decisions lightly, we took our time. Avaya Powered by IP Office is definitely the best system we’ve had.”
Avaya business partner DVX, Inc. installed the Powered by Avaya IP Office™ solution for Trust Security. Robinson comments favorably on the positive experience he had with the company. “We’re not the typical customer, our platform needs to be robust and do a lot of different things,” he says. “DVX has been very responsive and supportive.”
Meeting an Essential Need
Trust Security’s business has grown by 30 percent since the implementation of the Avaya Powered by Avaya IP Office. Robison attributes this spike to the Avaya VoIP solution allowing them to provide more reliable customer service to existing customers and capture lucrative after-hours clients.
“We make higher profit margins from after-hours work, so it’s really helped our bottom line to be available to take the calls that lead to those jobs,” says Robinson.
Avaya Powered by IP Office has also helped improve safety for Trust Security officers in the field.
“Another reason the reliability of our phone system is so critical is that in the security business, a phone call can be a matter of life and death,” says Robinson. “At any moment, I could get a call from an officer who is in a life-threatening situation. I have to be able to communicate with that person.”
Robinson also reports that the solution has been easy for the staff to use and requires very little in the way of maintenance and management.
“Avaya Powered by IP Office really supports our business model by giving us the flexibility to have scheduled dispatch and manipulate how calls are directed with ease,” says Robinson. “The system serves an essential need.”
Another reason the reliability of our phone system is so critical is that in the security business, a phone call can be a matter of life and death. At any moment, I could get a call from an officer who is in a life-threatening situation. I have to be able to communicate with that person.
A Scalable Solution
Not only does Robinson anticipate continued growth with the company’s traditional commercial accounts, Trust Security expects to expand its offerings to include monitored camera systems. Robinson feels confident that his Avaya IP Office will be able to support the expansion of the business.
“By my calculation, I should be able to triple the number of employees I have currently without changing how Avaya Powered by IP Office system works,” says Robinson.