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Developer Conference 2020: RingCentral Customers Share How They’re Improving Operations with APIs


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One of the most popular panels at this year’s all-virtual RingCentral Developer Conference was a conversation with two customers about how they’re using RingCentral API platform to improve their operations. David Lee, VP of Platform Products at RingCentral, led the discussion.

The fact that these two customers couldn’t be more different—the owner of a small custom t-shirt business, and the IT director for Columbia University—demonstrates that the RingCentral API platform offers tools and functionality that can benefit any type of organization.

Innovative uses for RingCentral APIs

24 Hour Tees

Chais Meyer co-founded 24 Hour Tees—a custom-printed shirt company—with his wife Shawna in 2013. Although they’ve kept their staff small and operations lean, the business’s reputation for outstanding service has helped them grow steadily year after year. In fact, keeping up with customer inquiries for order-status updates began to tax the small team.

So Chais rolled out an AI-based chatbot to respond to customers’ SMS text messages. And because 24 Hour Tees is a RingCentral customer, Chais was able to quickly and easily connect the bot to the company’s RingCentral solution.

“Let’s say a message in a customer text includes a phrase like ‘order status.’ The system does a search of our records for that cell phone number, finds any active orders, and then responds automatically with all relevant updates. It has been terrific for keeping customers informed and happy.”

Columbia University

Columbia University faced different challenges. The Ivy League university has thousands of faculty and support staff, often moving between multiple schools on a campus that spans dozens of acres. Staff safety is a priority issue for the university. But quickly getting help to people who need it can be a challenge in such a large environment, especially if it’s difficult to pinpoint their exact location.

So Joe Rini, the university’s senior IT director, used RingCentral’s API platform to develop a Dynamic e911 solution.

“The API lets us continuously upload location data as users move around campus from one access point to another on our WiFi network. That information gets pushed to RingCentral in real-time, and if the person dials 911 we’re able to provide highly accurate information about exactly where they are.”

Both Chais and Joe offered other examples of RingCentral APIs that they’re using to improve their operations. Watch the full discussion to see them.

Additional API rollouts planned

Columbia University and 24 Hour Tees have been so pleased with the value they’ve found in RingCentral’s APIs that both organizations are planning additional API integrations to improve other workflows.

Chais explains, for example, that 24 Hour Tees is creating customer-service QR codes that will link to dynamic URLs, and his plan is to connect these codes to the company’s RingCentral account: 

“When someone has a request, they can scan a QR code, and it will pre-populate a text message that they can send to our RingCentral phone number for help.” 

At Columbia University, one of Joe’s next big initiatives is to use RingCentral’s team-messaging API to dynamically and automatically create teams for specific groups of people—such as all students in a given class or all faculty working for a specific school:

“At the beginning of a semester, for example, as people register for a class, we can dynamically create a team just for them on RingCentral’s messaging solution. We can then integrate that team into our learning management system, so there’s a standing messaging platform ready for students and faculty to use for chats and file sharing.” 

Hear more great API insights

These two RingCentral API “power users” had a lot of other great ideas for leveraging APIs to create improved workflows.

To know more about the Developer Conference.

Originally published Nov 04, 2020, updated Dec 30, 2022

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