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Unify and Active Voice & Data enable multi-site OpenScape Business deployment that dramatically improves team performance and drives new ways of working 

South Yorkshire Credit Union (SYCU), a savings and loan cooperative, has completely overhauled its customer service operations with the help of Unify’s OpenScape Business platform. In conjunction with long-term partner and winner of the Unify Private Cloud Solution of the Year Award 2013-14, Active Voice & Data, Unify has provided SYCU with this powerful all-in-one solution that brings the benefits of Unified Communications (UC) into its business. OpenScape Business has enabled SYCU to centralise all telephony for its ten disparate branches and has enabled new and more dynamic ways of working amongst its team – thereby enhancing customer service.

A not-for-profit organisation, SYCU provides small affordable loans and financial services, including budgeting assistance as well as signposting to debt advice, to it 25,000 members in and around the South and North Yorkshire area. Due to a fairly sporadic, yet steadily increasing number of calls per day, SYCU recognised that it had a requirement for a flexible communications solution to replace its rudimentary and inflexible ISDN lines. SYCU also acknowledged a need for a dynamic communications platform that would drive agility, enhance customer service and increase staff productivity.

Unify’s OpenScape Business solution – delivered to the SYCU sites via a virtualised PBX hosted in an Onyx Data Centre with MPLS (multiprotocol label switching) technology (a high performance solution that directs data across network nodes using short path labels in place of complex network addresses) – was selected.  OpenScape Business enables SYCU to take greater control of its day-to-day operations, administration and configuration of its telephony infrastructure. OpenScape Business gives SYCU cutting-edge UC functionality in a single, affordable and manageable platform. These IP and hybrid communication solutions deliver voice and conference services, voice mail, messaging, mobility, a multi-media contact centre and presence functionality, all in an easy-to-use and flexible system.  OpenScape Business also enables greater reliability and flexibility in SYCU’s telephony system as it gives it the ability to remotely modify call routing and allocate resources – leading to improved teamwork and better customer service.

Prior to the Unify installation, if a customer wanted their call forwarded to a specific member of staff or branch, the SYCU operator would often give them a direct dial number as there was no way of easily forwarding the call to different locations. With an expanding customer base and increased customer service expectations; the OpenScape Business platform provided the perfect solution to keep costs down and erase SYCU’s reliance on an antiquated, clunky on-site call system.

On the new Unify solution, Tom Shackleton, Finance Supervisor at South Yorkshire Credit Union comments: “As South Yorkshire Credit Union grows we’re constantly looking for the smartest ways in which to utilise our resources. The Unify OpenScape Business solution has boosted our customer service to new heights, with an auto-attendant and proper call routing in place, calls can now be transferred to anyone in our 50-strong organisation quickly, and easily.

“Also, with OpenScape Business we have more knowledge than before in regards to who is contacting us at any given time. Prior to implementation, we had no way of predicting or forecasting trends in call volumes so we weren’t necessarily staffing our contact centre in the best possible way.”

Iain Simpson, Managing Director at Active Voice & Data, adds: “Today’s savvy customers expect a seamless communications experience. Businesses on the other hand are trying to keep their organisation streamlined to save costs, yet remain connected so that they can cater to these expectations. Providing OpenScape Business to SYCU has enabled them to meet their customer expectations. At the same time it has allowed the Credit Union to improve its productivity by giving staff members better and more dynamic ways of working, all whilst cutting costs. We are excited to continue to help SYCU on its ongoing innovation journey.”

Tony Smith, Sales Director, Indirect Channel, Unify, adds: “In partnership with Active Voice & Data, we believe we have delivered a robust and flexible communications infrastructure to SYCU. The Credit Union will benefit for years to come from the resilience, flexibility and scalability that OpenScape Business provides. We look forward to continuing to assist them and other businesses on their journey to UC adoption.

Implementation of Unify OpenScape was quick and easy, with Active Voice and Data setting up the system in a little over two days. Feedback from SYCU employees has been positive, with a quick five minute orientation session being all that was required to get staff using the system properly.

For further information on Unify OpenScape Business, visit

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