Grant Engineering turns the heat up with new business telephony solution

Intellicom turning up the heat on telephony at Grant Engineering, Cian Maher, Intellicom and Leigh Feery, Grant Engineering

Grant Engineering turns the heat up with new business telephony solution

Leading home heating manufacturer, Grant Engineering chooses Intellicom to power new business telephony system.

Business Challenge

Celebrating their 40th Anniversary in business this year, Grant Engineering designs and manufacturers home heating solutions that are now exported across the world. The business employs over 300 people in its facility in Birr, County Offaly with a sales and training office in the UK.

Efficiency is a hallmark of the heating solutions that Grant Engineering design, test and manufacturer in-house in Birr. Over 55,000 boilers are manufactured there each year and these make their way to heat homes and businesses across Ireland, UK, Finland, South Africa, Greece and Malta. While the condensing oil burner is their biggest seller, the business is also marching on to the sustainable future and now also manufacturers heating solutions in the renewables and solar areas and they also produce air source heat pumps.

Being a progressive and growing business, Grant Engineering’s existing phone system was reaching capacity and end of life and was simply unable to deliver to the business the flexibility and functionality that they desired and that they knew was possible with a modern IP based telephony and unified communications system.

Their existing phone system was running off multiple traditional phone lines coming in. Any changes to the system including additions, removals of extensions or addition of extra phone lines required an engineer to come on-site, which brought with it unnecessary cost and delay. They reached a stage where no further phone lines could be added, presenting an insurmountable challenge to this innovative and fast growing business.

“The trigger for change was that the system reached capacity but what we had was a ‘dumb’ system, no further expansion and no useful reporting was possible from it and it was hampering our business flexibility and productivity”.

Leigh Feery, IT Manager at Grant Engineering.

The Solution

Aware of the potential of a VoIP based phone system, Grant Engineering went to the market to find a partner who could assist in designing and deploying a telecoms solution that would enable them to adopt a more flexible approach for the business delivering the most advanced telephony solution, at the best price. They choose Intellicom, another Irish based and owned company, to assist in designing and implementing the solution that would form the basis of the company’s communications infrastructure for the next business generation.

“Intellicom had everything we needed, continued Feery on their decision to award the contract to Intellicom. “They had all the bells and whistles and had great stability in the team that was dealing with us day-to-day and for the longer term. We also had excellent reports from existing customers and these really gave us the confidence that this wasn’t seen as a quick sale for Intellicom but a true long-term partnership.”

“We approached a few companies and providers before going with Intellicom. With one, we found the solution too basic and lacking the flexibility and intuitiveness we wanted from a reporting perspective. Another, while it delivered most of the features we wanted, was too expensive”.

Leigh Feery, IT Manager at Grant Engineering.

Intellicom, which also has an office in Birr, presented them with a solution that would not only deliver the flexibility and functionality they wanted today but also provided a road map to adding additional functionality and benefits which could be seamlessly added as time goes on.  The telephony solution designed, delivered and supported by Intellicom is hosted on-site at Grant Engineering. The small footprint Appliance server which hosts the system is connected into the existing internal LAN network which was recently upgraded to include a new structured cable

From traditional individual telephone lines, the company’s new solution moved them to both a Multi-Channel SIP Trunk and an ISDN FRA line. This setup delivered both automated resilience and 50% more capacity than their original system at less than quarter of the cost.

“Incoming calls make up the majority of Grant Engineering’s telephony requirements, said Cian Maher, CTO of Intellicom.  “In designing the solution for them, this was front of mind and we implemented a solution that would enable them to have the confidence that these critical incoming calls would not be lost due to lack of capacity. We were acutely conscious of the cost implications so this solution has brought great benefit, not just to the day to day running of the business, but the bottom line.”

The solution implemented by Intellicom included new IP handsets throughout the business. A variety of Polycom and Yealink handset and conference phone models were installed across the business, dependent on functionality requirements of the user or location. Yealink T46G handsets were installed for receptionists giving them full call routing and management functionality with Polycom VVX400 handsets installed for directors.

For the majority of desks, Polycom VVX300 models were installed which deliver all the required functionality for users but at a lower price-point than the higher end handsets. The solution also includes Strobe Lights and Loudspeakers deployed within the large warehouse area to notify staff of calls waiting within the warehouse office that otherwise may be missed due to noise.

Intune Key Features

  • Scalable for larger volume contact centres or smaller departmental-level helpdesks.
  • Feature-rich, customer experience out of the box.
  • Simple, transparent licensing model which reduces costs and provides clear pricing
  • Powerful reporting which streamlines operations improves productivity and reduces costs.
  • Systems integration to CRM systems for screen pop and click to dial functions.
  • Integrate with external Strobe Light, Speaker and Pager systems to maximise call answering in Warehouse environments.
  • Flexible and scalable infrastructure which adapts to the changing business environment as required.
  • Multi-channel services supporting Voice, Video, IM, email and SMS based communications.
  • Third party integration service offers bidirectional communications with many other vendors hardware and software solutions.

Business Benefits

A key benefit to the business that has particularly stood out for Grant Engineering was the impact the new telephony solution has had on the marketing teams’ campaigns. Commenting on this, Leigh said:

“We now have a block of phone numbers from Intellicom (SIP connected lines) and we issue these for specific campaigns as they are launched and we can then produce in-depth reports on the associated call flows with each new number. This is all done in-house and takes a matter of minutes. This excellent functionality enables us to track the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and gives us a clear view to where advertising spend is most effective. This is invaluable to the business going forward.”

Delivering on Grant Engineering’s requirement that the new telephony solution would not require engineer visits to enable changes, the system is customizable, on an ongoing basis, mostly in-house by Feery who can make additions and changes as new call flow or features are required.

“The solution from Intellicom placed the power and control of the system in our hands which is a huge and very positive change for us. It’s changed the thinking internally and its enabled teams internally to view the telephone system as an enabler of the business rather than just a basic function.”

Previously, all calls were directed to reception, where three people’s time was dedicated to answering and routing calls. The telephony system now enables the automatic routing of many calls and this has freed up the time of one of the receptionists who is now redeployed within the business delivering an immediate benefit to the bottom line.

Additional benefits such as monitoring of call volumes and waiting times has also brought great benefit to the business where previously there was no way of identifying if calls were being lost due to lack of system capacity or
being put on hold for too long.

As part of the implementation of the new system, Intellicom conducted training for the users at Grant Engineering which was delivered on an incremental basis, which Feery sees as an excellent way to build trust with users across the business.

“We were not bombarded with training on all the features on day one but initially given an insight to how we could do the basics that we would have used with the old system and then as time went on, additional features were highlighted and explained.”

The positive and responsive relationship with the team at Intellicom was highlighted by Feery in discussing the project.

“It was important to us, in selecting a partner, that we were working with them for the long term. With Intellicom, we’ve found that the people who sold us the system, designed and installed it are still on hand on a day-to-day basis if we need information, training or additional functionality. Issues that arise are quickly addressed and we’re confident that they have taken the time to understand what the business and the team here need.”

Grant Engineering has built a business over the past 40 years that continues to evolve in step with their customer needs and technology advances. With their telephony partner, Intellicom, they have in place a service provider that reflects that same business ethos as they turn up the heat on their National and International business expansion.

About Grant Engineering

With an established history of over 35 years designing, manufacturing and supplying a wide range of highly efficient and reliable heating products, Grant has become a firm favourite for many householders and installers throughout
Ireland and the United Kingdom.  Grant has achieved an enviable reputation within the heating industry for its high-efficiency approach to new concepts. As the leading boiler manufacturer in Ireland, recognised with awards for its innovative products and contribution to the industry, they are aware that although most homes will continue to be heated by gas, oil or electricity, there is a growing awareness that we all need to do more to reduce our dependency
on fossil fuels. They focus on achieving environmentally friendly solutions that benefit not only this generation but future ones.