The Leader in
VoIP Technology

Search Summary

Industry: Financial

Business Size: 500-1000

Solution: ShoreTel’s Unified Communications solutions

Geography: United States

Success Story

 

Founded in 1952, Colonial Savings F.A. is a national, multi-service financial institution headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas. It is one of largest servicers of mortgage loans in the United States, with a portfolio exceeding $12.5 Billion. It is the parent company of Colonial National Mortgage, a leading retail mortgage lender; CU Members Mortgage, which provides mortgage services to credit unions nationwide; Community Bankers Mortgage, which provides mortgage origination and servicing to community banks; and Colonial Savings, a network of seven banks located throughout North Central Texas. It is also affiliated with Colonial Life Insurance Company of Texas, DuBose & Associates Insurance, First Western Title Company, and First Western Title America. The company is privately held, by choice, ensuring their focus remains on their customers, not on the expectations of Wall Street. Most importantly though, are the high marks Colonial receives from its customers and employees.


“The quality and dedication of our people keep this tradition of service alive, a tradition upheld sixty years and counting. “ShoreTel’s Unified Communications solutions have provided Colonial Savings F.A. with a cost effective strategic set of telecommunications products. This allows us to enhance our customer service options for providing automated banking and mortgage loan information, as well as superior service by our customer-facing staff through the use of ShoreTel Enterprise Contact Center workflow automation.”

--Jack Plonien, Sr. Vice President, Colonial Savings

Colonial had an antiquated Siemens/Rolm telephone system which had been in use for more than 15 years and was coming to the end of its support life. Their contact center was also using an additional product from Interactive Intelligence which was challenging to administer and expensive to support.

As with most companies that experience year-over-year growth, they found themselves with multiple systems that wouldn’t work easily together and created a maintenance burden for their support staff. They knew they needed to upgrade to a VoIP capable solution, but at the time of their evaluation, their data network infrastructure wasn’t capable of supporting real-time applications such as VOIP and SIP trunking.

Additionally, investors such as Fannie Mae began requiring reporting on such things as conversation histories with their borrowers, making timely collection calls, and statistics on how many incoming calls are accepted in a timely manner or rejected due to hang ups and abandonments.


“We needed a single enterprise solution to support more than 25 branch locations throughout Texas and the US. A solution capable of provisioning redundancy that was cost effective and could provide business continuity capabilities in disaster events, while ensuring the solution would be continually enhanced and supported for the next decade to come.”

--Jack Plonien, Sr. Vice President, Colonial Savings

Colonial chose the ShoreTel system over other systems because their “all-in-one” solution met their current needs while allowing them to buy an enterprise-level product to meet their long-term strategic goals. By replacing several disparate legacy systems with a single solution, the cost savings became evident quickly, but the primary driver was that Comm3 proved their team could implement the proposal, train our staff, and provide ongoing budget-friendly support for all of our telecommunication needs without the requirement for multiple companies to be involved. Ultimately, this reduced our annual support costs by eliminating unnecessary multiple vendor contracts. Strategically, Colonial needed a single enterprise solution to support more than 25 branch locations throughout Texas and the US, select a solution capable of provisioning redundancy which was cost effective and provided business continuity capabilities in disaster events, all while ensuring the solution would be continually enhanced and supported, for the next decade to come. Comm3 & ShoreTel continue to deliver this to us daily allowing us to focus on our customers…which is our primary objective.

After implementing ShoreTel at Colonial’s Home Offices in Ft. Worth, Texas, they saw a cost reduction in their ongoing maintenance and equipment failure rates associated with their prior antiquated systems. Over time, ShoreTel allowed Colonial to incorporate more cost effective SIP trunking services to replace traditional PRI circuits, using their existing MPLS data network. To date, the simplicity of the ShoreTel solution allows Colonial to administer telecommunications to their headquarters campus and eight of their branches, by a three person telecom department. Additionally, as Colonial converts their remaining branch locations to ShoreTel, they know they will be able to administer all locations with the same 3 person telecom staff. Based upon what they witnessed during their evaluation, they knew this wouldn’t be possible with ShoreTel’s competitors. As they provision their remaining non-ShoreTel branches within the next 12 months using their upgraded network MPLS & SIP circuits to each branch, this will allow the deletion of those local & expensive PRI circuits.

Productivity has been driven by ShoreTel call center work flows, which has allowed them to improve their customer services to award-winning recognition by their investors. Their highly automated interactive voice response (IVR) capabilities developed by the Comm3 staff, have handled more that 1,000,000 customer calls over the past 12 months, without the need for any Colonial staff intervention.

ShoreTel’s ECC product drives workflow in their mortgage servicing division. It definitely enhanced the employee’s productivity and ultimately enhanced their customer service experience. Employees have adopted ShoreTel’s Communicator desktop software which has vastly improved their ability to quickly handle calls without the need to answer their telephone handsets. Users can forward calls, integrate their MS Outlook functions for update call handling mode selections, enable Find-Me/Follow-Me for mobility, and access call history information at the click of their mouse. Communicator integration with Outlook also allows staff to schedule conference calls directly within Outlook’s appointments and meetings tabs, by the click of a toolbar option.


“By replacing several disparate legacy systems with a single solution, the cost savings became evident quickly, but the primary driver was that Comm3 proved their team could implement the proposal, train our staff, and provide ongoing budget-friendly support for all of our telecommunication needs without the requirement for multiple companies to be involved. Ultimately, this reduced our annual support costs by eliminating unnecessary multiple vendor contracts. The systems in place are dependable, flexible, resilient, and supportable by a small number of Colonial telecom staff and a very knowledgeable ShoreTel partner, Comm3. Overall, this has definitely enhanced our employees’ productivity and our customer service experience.”

--Jack Plonien, Sr. Vice President, Colonial Savings