Our organization had several big goals for a new phone system: to lower our telephony costs over time, add redundancy for DR, and give our staff more flexibility and mobility in their business communications. With RingCentral, we’ve achieved every one of those goals.
Corporate Services Supervisor
When local government entities throughout Tennessee need software solutions, computer hardware support, or a wide range of other technical services, they turn to Local Government Corporation more than any other provider.
A private, not-for-profit corporation chartered nearly a half-century ago to provide computer services to local governments, LGC is now Tennessee’s largest technical solution partner for entities such as cities, counties, school districts, municipal courts, fire and police departments, and public-works agencies. Today, in fact, more than 1,500 local government entities partner with LGC for their technology needs.
A telephony system that cost too much and provided too little redundancy
Considering the enormous number of government departments and agencies across Tennessee counting on LGC’s technical expertise to keep their operations running smoothly—and the millions of residents who depend on those local entities—LGC needs a highly reliable, easy-to-administer phone system.
Kevin Kizer, LGC’s Corporate Services Supervisor, points out that the company’s previous telephony infrastructure just wasn’t up to the job.
“The phone system was on-prem, running on a couple of T1 lines, and the administrative backend was so complicated that I was really the only person on my IT team—meaning the only person in the company—who could deal with any issues or make even simple updates.”
As Kevin also points out, the biggest risk posed by LGC’s telephony system was an outage. “We had two ongoing threats to the phones. First, those T1 lines were also delivering our internet service, so our call bandwidth could be compromised anytime. Second, we get all our bandwidth via a single pole outside our main building, and there are semi-trucks speeding by all day. If someone took out that pole, and we lost internet, we’d also lose all phone service.”
So, as the on-prem system neared its fifth birthday, which also marked the end of LGC’s support agreement, Kevin and his team began looking for a more flexible, cost-effective, and redundant cloud phone solution. That search led them straight to RingCentral.
RingCentral solution helps LGC reduce costs and add disaster recovery
Kevin made a two-pronged case to LGC’s senior management team for migrating the company to RingCentral. The first prong: disaster recovery.
“We get serious weather here, such as snowstorms, which is another reason we could temporarily close our office. We were able to show our leadership team that with RingCentral’s cloud solution, our employees would have business phone access on their laptops and cell phones. Even if we had to vacate the building, employees could keep taking customer calls offsite.”
That went a long way to persuading the executive staff, Kevin says. But, he adds, one of the most important factors for a not-for-profit like LGC is cost. And here we were able to make a case for RingCentral as well.
“RingCentral wouldn’t require any upfront capital expenditure because everything is in the cloud. If we instead chose to look for another on-prem system—which itself would start giving us problems within a few years—we’d have to lay out a huge amount of money for the hardware and to set up maintenance agreements.”
Kevin was also able to show his leadership team that RingCentral would help LGC lower its ongoing telephony expenses.
With our old system, we were spending about $4,500 a month for connectivity and long-distance phone time. Switching to RingCentral cut that bill by more than half—saving us over $2,500 a month. When I presented those numbers to our management team, they gave me an enthusiastic thumbs-up to move forward.
Corporate Services Supervisor
In fact, post-COVID, LGC found yet another way—this one entirely unexpected—that RingCentral helped the company lower expenses.
“We used to have more than 70 employees reporting into an office every day, and we needed two buildings to support that number of staff. But after the lockdowns, we saw—in large part because RingCentral let everybody stay connected from home—that we could allow most of our staff to go remote permanently. And that allowed us to sell one of our buildings.”
Improving operations with RingCentral’s mobile, intuitive system
Now that they all have the RingCentral softphone on their computers and mobile app on their cell phones, LGC’s employees can communicate—and be highly responsive to customers—no matter where they are.
As Kevin points out, “It gives us so much peace of mind not to worry anymore about a problem in our headquarters taking down phone service and keeping us from answering our customers when they need us.”
Nor, Kevin points out, is phone service the only RingCentral feature that LGC’s employees are using to improve their workflows. “One service we offer customers is preparing and printing their W2 forms for employees, and many of our customers send us that paperwork by fax. We were using a multi-function device to handle those projects, but now we use the digital fax built into our RingCentral app—and that’s saving us a lot of time and hassles.”
RingCentral’s Professional Services team enables a smooth implementation
Finally, Kevin notes, LGC’s experience with RingCentral began on an extremely positive note, thanks to the deployment help they received from the company.
“We’ve earned our 1,500 customers over the last half-century by putting them first and making sure we’re always attentive to their needs,” he says. “Being an outstanding technology partner has always been our mission and our number-one goal—so we recognize it in other businesses when we see it. From our earliest days working with RingCentral’s Professional Services group, the company has definitely proven itself to us as one of those great partners.”
RingCentral’s Professional Services team was terrific. They helped us through all the technical details, like porting numbers and getting things configured properly, which was great. But what I appreciated most was how patient and thorough the team was. They took time to listen to us, help us customize the system the way we wanted , and stayed in contact to make sure everything was working smoothly. That’s a great partner.
Corporate Services Supervisor