Norfolk College switches underperforming standalone phone system for one integrated with Microsoft 365.

THE CLIENT

More than academic success 
Reading School was founded in 1125 and has an enviable reputation for providing leading academic education. More importantly, the school seeks to nurture curiosity, inspire service and build character, promoting honesty and community as well as excellence and leadership. The school is as dedicated to helping students find fulfilment and happiness as much as guiding them toward achieving their academic potential.  

THE CHALLENGE

A common predicament
Like many schools, Reading had a standard, traditional ISDN telephone system. It served the different departments well, although it was old, and very expensive. The system predated staff, so no-one really understood it, or how to get the best out of its limited features.

In conversation with the local telephone company Gareth Sellwood, Reading School’s network manager, was advised to upgrade to an Internet Protocol (IP) telephone system. Partly because of the feature benefits and cost savings IP offers, but also because the ISDN and PSTN networks will be switched off at the end of 2025.

IT Strategy

THE SOLUTION

A day from DMS to establish and implement the school’s requirements, some training for Gareth, plus the purchase of replacement handsets for each department and Reading School was ready to make the switch.

THE PROCESS

A day from DMS to establish and implement the school’s requirements, some training for Gareth, plus the purchase of replacement handsets for each department and Reading School was ready to make the switch.

Department handsets and device options for individuals

Although some of the 112 staff have direct dial numbers and use various devices to access the system, most of the licences have gone to departments sharing fixed handsets.

Whilst there is currently no need for most individuals to have their own line access, internal communication is done via the Teams App, Gareth is pleased with the additional flexibility of the device route and may progress this way in the future.

DMS Careers
Smooth handover, with easy on-site management
One of the big advantages of the change for Reading, is that no-one has been inconvenienced by the change. New departmental handsets or access via a notebook or other device, are the main noticeable difference for users.

Subscribe to our newsletter and keep up to date...

    BENEFITS INCLUDE

    Gareth is pleased with the simplicity of the system’s back end “Teams Phones is full of useful features and, because it’s Microsoft and web based, the interface was familiar to me and easy to set up”.

    A dream for the receptionist ….
    The school receptionist hasn’t been inconvenienced either, in fact she loves the increased reliability and efficiency. Features like auto attendants, call queues, and call forwarding help manage incoming calls more efficiently. And, during busy periods, calls can be routed to an automated system or other staff members, so no calls are missed.

    … 60% SAVINGS

    … and the finance manager!
    And, with a saving of around 60% on the previous ISDN system, it will come as no surprise that the finance manager loves the new MS Teams Phone System too! The bill is now a steady monthly payment, not subject to call numbers and, when help is needed, it’s provided by DMS who the school is familiar with after years of IT support.