Thanks to RingCentral, This Successful Boating Dealer Found its Work-from-Home Transition to Be Smooth Sailing
Dry Dock Marine Center sells and services a wide range of boats and watercrafts, as well as boating parts and accessories. The company has been serving the marine community since 1987.
When COVID-19 forced adjustments to every industry, Dry Dock Marine Center was deemed an “essential” business. But for much of its history, this watercraft sales and service company was already an essential part of the Midwestern marine industry.
Dry Dock Marine Center is a major supplier of boating equipment in its region. The company, for example, is Indiana’s largest authorized dealer of boat lifts and docks from popular manufacturers like Hewitt and Lakeshore. The company also has one of the area’s largest onsite inventories of new and used boats and accessories, as well as a thriving service department.
Because it plays such an important role in the local boating industry, Dry Dock Marine Center has become the go-to source for the area’s smaller boating sales and repair shops. Local law enforcement and rescue agencies even come to Dry Dock Marine Center to purchase watercraft and accessories. These are some of the reasons the business has been deemed “essential” during the pandemic.
Fortunately, by the time COVID-19 lockdown forced some of the company’s employees to work from home, Dry Dock Marine Center already a phone system in place that made this transition smooth and painless. Of course, the event that led to this switch was anything but…
“The phone company told us someone had hit a fiber line, and it would take at least 3 weeks to restore service. We couldn’t afford that downtime at any point during the year—but least of all July 4th.”
“In less than an hour after I said, ‘Let’s do it,’ RingCentral was forwarding our business calls to our cell phones. It was incredible.”
A phone outage on the worst week imaginable
A nightmare. That’s how General Manager Cory Archbold describes the experience that led Dry Dock Marine Center to switch from its legacy phone service to RingCentral’s cloud phone platform. During the week leading up to the July 4th weekend—one of the busiest times all year for watercraft businesses—all of the phones at Dry Dock Marine Center’s offices went down.
Transitioning to RingCentral in less than an hour
Cory jumped on the internet and started researching cloud phone providers. RingCentral kept popping up atop the lists he found, so Cory signed up for RingCentral Office’s work-from-anywhere phone system. And with that decision… well, Dry Dock Marine Center had its phone service restored in less than 3 weeks.
More communication flexibility and mobility than ever
Now that they all have RingCentral apps on their computers and mobile phones, Dry Dock Marine Center’s employees can work with customers from anywhere—both by phone and even via SMS texts—as they walk through the showroom or accessory store, and even if they’re working from home on their laptops.
“Our employees are using the RingCentral desktop apps for calls and texts on their computers, and the mobile apps to do it all on their own cell phones,” says Cory. “It’s so much more convenient now to stay connected with our customers wherever we are.”
Cory has even found that RingCentral helps with his least-favorite type of communication. “People still ask for our fax number,” he says. “Before RingCentral, I always wanted to tell them we don’t have one anymore, then throw the fax machine against the wall. But now that we can receive and send faxes online through RingCentral, it’s become easy.”
Keeping operations going during the pandemic
And when Indiana’s governor issues lockdown orders to combat the coronavirus, Dry Dock Marine Center was already prepared to adjust to working from home. “Everyone was able to just plug a headset into their laptops and help customers over the phone,” Cory explains. “Our customers just assumed they were reaching us in our offices.”