What the ShoreTel Acquisition by Mitel Means to Your Business

The very foundation of running a business is to believe in the product you are offering. That's why we, along with 40,000 end-user companies worldwide, are proud to be in a “true” partnership with ShoreTel.

Gregg's partnership with ShoreTel has helped the company grow in the telecommunications industry by offering services that put value for its customers and a commitment to staying at the top of the industry a priority.

Since 2005, Gregg Communications has been a ShoreTel Partner, and was the first ShoreTel Partner in the Chicago area to earn ShoreTel’s Certified Gold Champion Partner status.  Gregg was also the first Partner in the Chicago area to be contact center/call center certified, having installed more than 800 call centers nationwide. We include extensive ShoreTel system training for end users and administrators, offering unparalleled ShoreTel system ongoing support.

Gregg Communications CEO, Tom Rickert, has served as a member of ShoreTel’s Partner Advisory Council.

“We have promoted ShoreTel as the last telephone system a company would need to purchase because the ShoreTel product grows with you and does not become obsolete,” Rickert said.

For instance, included with the ShoreTel support agreement, all customers are entitled to software upgrades, which Gregg normally provides for clients at least once per year without any additional charges. This enables our company to keep our customers up to date with the latest enhancements to their communications systems.

Additionally, ShoreTel has recently introduced a totally new platform called Connect, which ShoreTel has also included as part of customer support agreements.  Existing customers can migrate to this new software at no additional cost.  Most other manufacturers in our industry would require a “forklift upgrade” which would carry a significant cost for replacing equipment, installation, business process changes, and training staff.

Come late September when ShoreTel officially transitions to Mitel, Gregg customers will continue to receive excellent products and services that are backed by an all-star reputation.

“ShoreTel is the number one player world-wide for small to medium size businesses.  They have been a fantastic supplier for us and for our clients," Rickert said.

As ShoreTel transitions into Mitel, we will continue to provide the same level of unified communication support and service to our clients for which Gregg has been well known and recognized over the past 50 years. You can count on our commitment to improved business communications and customer satisfaction for your business without interruption.

Independent surveys and client feedback agree: our obsession for satisfaction sets the industry standard for customer care. Contact Gregg today to learn more

ShoreTel Honored with Industry Accolades

September 21, 2017

SUNNYVALE, Calif., Sept. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- ShoreTel® (SHOR), a leading provider of communication solutions that make interactions simple, was recently honored with multiple awards recognizing the company's senior leadership, go to market approach and innovative technology solutions.

Mark Roberts Named Top Midmarket IT Vendor Executive by The Channel Company for Fourth Consecutive Year

The Channel Company annually recognizes influential vendor executives who have demonstrated a strong commitment to the needs of CIOs and IT leaders in the midmarket, one of the IT industry's fastest-growing sectors.

ShoreTel chief marketing officer, Mark Roberts, was named a 2017 Top Midmarket Vendor Executive for the fourth year in a row.

"It is an honor to be recognized again by The Channel Company and to represent ShoreTel's focus on the midmarket," said Roberts. "Midmarket organizations often need more than just an off-the-shelf solution but don't always have the resources to support excess complexity. The simplicity of ShoreTel Connect paired with the flexibility of our ShoreTel Summit CPaaS solution really creates an ideal combination for this market."

ShoreTel Takes Back-to-Back Awards for Best Vendor Spotlight at Midsize Enterprise Summit

Midsize Enterprise SummitTM is an event for midmarket IT executives, offering IT decision makers access to top vendors, seasoned analysts and peers. At the event this week, the ShoreTel team took home the Xcellence Award for Best Vendor Spotlight, which honors the top-performing technology solution providers based on IT decision makers' perceptions during the event.

ShoreTel also received the Best Vendor Spotlight at the spring Midsize Enterprise Summit earlier this year.

ShoreTel Connect CLOUD Wins Hosted VoIP Excellence Award

The INTERNET TELEPHONY Hosted VoIP Excellence Awards honor services that have demonstrated innovation, unique features and noteworthy developments – improving functionality and usability for their customers.

For the second year in a row, ShoreTel Connect CLOUD was named a winner for innovation in IP solutions.

ShoreTel Honored with Award for Best Telecommunication Website

ShoreTel also recently received top honors for its digital marketing with a 2017 WebAward for Outstanding Achievement in Web Development from the Web Marketing Association. ShoreTel's corporate site won for Best Telecommunication Website.

Winners in the WebAward Competition are chosen by independent judges based on seven criteria – design, ease of use, copywriting, interactivity, use of technology, innovation and content.

Gregg Communications comes highly recommended via Net Promotor Score®

It’s easy to choose which cafe to go grab coffee, and which office supplies vendor to restock printer cartridges, or even which company to purchase new computers. But, when you’re a company looking to install phone systems or call centers, where do you go? How do you choose what company would be right for you to bring your business?

That’s where the Net Promoter Score® comes in. Consider it like a Yelp for businesses. It’s a useful way for customers to state their overall satisfaction.

Gregg Communications, a Chicago-based telecommunications company that has been serving customers in an extensive range of industries for 50 years, has a Net Promoter Score® of 92. This kind of score is not only difficult to achieve, but also to maintain—and Gregg has done so for the last 12 years, placing the company in the top 1% of partners world-wide for customer satisfaction.

When looking for additional resources, it’s important to look to fellow customers and peers for recommendations on which company to choose. For businesses looking to implement VoIP telephone systems, call centers or the many other services Gregg provides, well, the choice is easy.

"Gregg Communications' score exceeds what is considered a world-class level of professionalism and customer care in the industry," Don Joos, CEO of ShoreTel said. “Gregg's consistent performance in delivering an exceptional all-around customer experience is a tribute to its dedication to customers. It is Partners, like Gregg, that ensure customers are not only satisfied, but delighted with ShoreTel products and services."

The Net Promoter Score® is an index ranging from -100 to 100 based on customer surveys that reflect their desire to recommend a company's products and services. It is calculated by a simple, two-question survey that is circulated and distributed.

1.     Customers are asked to choose a number on a scale of 1 to 10 of “how likely is it you would recommend this company to a colleague?”

2.     Then they are asked “what is the reason for your score”--an open text field where they can submit comments.

It's simple, yet straightforward and highly useful to companies looking for goods and services, especially a complex solution like a phone system. A small amount of time submitting your feedback can go a long way for companies looking to attract new clientele and customers. And it helps companies who are looking for independent feedback before choosing a new solution for their business.

Tom Rickert, CEO of Gregg Communications gratefully stated, "Earning this distinction for the 49th consecutive quarter is a tremendous honor, and a testament to the commitment and dedication of our entire staff to provide the best possible customer experience for our clients. We look forward to continuing with our quest to make each and every interaction with our client base fulfill our vision of e3 - experience excellence from experts."

Gregg Communications is one of the nation's premier suppliers of premise based and hosted VoIP business telephone systems with offices in Chicago and Lombard, IL.

Gregg has been recognized for the quality of the experience and expertise it provides to its clients from the consultative sales process, through the implementation, training and on-going support of its products.

For more information, go to http://greggcomm.com.

Gregg Communications looks forward to 50 more years in telecommunications

Imagine showing up at work and having no computer and no phone at your desk. You reach into your pocket and pull out your smartphone, but there’s no service. Actually, there’s no smartphone either.

Can most of us even imagine what life would be like today if we had to give up technology? That's like the adult equivalent of monsters under the bed.

Thankfully, there’s a solution to making sure that bad dream never becomes a reality. It’s all-star companies like Gregg Communications, who have been supplying telecommunications services nationwide since 1967 – well before the days of Internet and technology we know today.

And, while the days of products like Code-A-Phone and Carterfone are long gone, they paved the way for Gregg to evolve over its 50 years in business. This required Gregg to adapt to meet customer demands and stay one step ahead of technology.

For many years, the telecommunications industry was monopolized by AT&T. In 1968, one year after Gregg Communications started in business, the Federal Communications Commission made a landmark ruling known as the Carterfone decision, which allowed equipment from other manufacturers to connect directly to AT&T telephone lines. After this ruling, the market opened up to include numerous devices, i.e. answering machines, fax machines, telephone systems, etc. These and other products could now connect directly to telephone lines which was a game changer for companies like Gregg Communications.

That’s when business really took off.

“From the time our founders, George Gregg, Dick Glennie and Jim O’Donnell started, they built a solid foundation, and we have continued their legacy,” reflects Tom Rickert, CEO of Gregg Communications.

This strong legacy has resulted in thousands of telephone systems and hundreds of call centers installed for Gregg Communications’ customers nationwide.

Today, Gregg Communications provides a wide array of innovative communications services ranging from network assessments, project management, system implementation, training and ongoing support, and everything in between to clients in a range of industries. Rickert says there have been a lot of highlights over the years, but the thing he's most proud of is the company’s longstanding commitment to customer satisfaction.

Gregg’s customer satisfaction is measured by the globally recognized Net Promoter Score index and is based upon annual surveys conducted by an independent third party.  As of December 31, 2016, Gregg’s Net Promoter Score is 92 on a scale in which a score of 50 or greater is considered to be providing “world-class” customer satisfaction. The commitment that Gregg has made to comprehensive training for its sales, technical support and customer service teams has enabled Gregg to exceed the stringent platinum status certification levels, resulting in the outstanding NPS results.

“We have just recorded our 49th consecutive quarter of significantly exceeding the ‘world class’ customer satisfaction level,” Rickert explains. “Our commitment to the customer is something we cover with our staff on a continual and consistent basis in our meetings and our performance, and we're very focused on making sure our customers have an outstanding experience.”

The outstanding experience doesn’t just apply to customers. The average tenure of Gregg Communications’ employees is greater than 10 years, and the sales staff average is over 18 years. This longevity is a true testament to their passion, commitment and customer satisfaction of the services they are providing.

“We’re always trying to be on the leading edge of technology, not the bleeding edge,” Rickert says. “So, we're always looking, listening and talking with customers about where they see things going, and what we should be reviewing for their businesses. We work diligently to build longstanding relationships with our clients.”

Gregg Communications has offices in downtown Chicago and suburban Lombard. Gregg is an integral part of the communities in which they are basedGregg supports various local organizations like Horizons for Youth Scholarship Mentoring Community, Pillars, Seeds of Hope, Dream to Reality, Chicago Lights, Mustard Seed Community, The Chicago Community Trust, Bright Pink, The American Cancer Society and many more.

Gregg Communications is looking forward to the next 50 years in business. It’s sure to be a very exciting time as the communications industry explodes even further.

Find out more about Gregg Communications’ services, background and commitment by visiting http://www.greggcomm.com.

Still Not Doing Anything? Chances Are Your Competitors Are

So you’re considering making the move, and you know that your competitors may already be ahead of you, but did you know 74% of companies are already evaluating Unified Communications (UC) in the cloud? Additionally 51% of companies plan to increase their cloud spending in 2016. It’s not just any cloud phone system that you need - you need a cloud system and provider that gives you the speed and agility to drive more business, gives you advanced capabilities, and isn’t complicated.

Well, that solution is at the tip of your fingertips, and all you need to do is reach out and grab it.

Staying competitive is inherent in what you do with your own solutions. Now it’s time to advance your competitive position through your phone system. You’ll increase employee productivity, have an OpEx model with predictably low monthly fees, agility, advanced capabilities, and enterprise mobility.

Here are 3 mission critical reasons that you should be doing something:
1.     Speed and agility matter.

Being a leader means many things, but especially agility and speed. Smart shoppers, who are ready to purchase, are contacting multiple providers, often making a purchase decision before you have a chance to respond. Don’t let an unanswered call, the fact that a sales rep is out of the office, or a whole slew of other reasons cause you a lost sale. Bottom line, speed and agility drive business.

2.     Your competitors are adopting change and growing.

From faster decision making to fewer blocked calls, the cloud gives you the power to succeed. What if you could determine who is immediately available, in the office, or on the road? Further, what if you could connect that person to the customer seamlessly? Insights into call hold times, and calls that couldn’t get through keep you informed and ahead. Think about it – how are you going to run a business if your customers can’t reach you because your phones are down?

3.     It’s really not complicated.

Do you remember moving to Office 365 or hosted email? Probably not, because it wasn’t difficult. Moving your phone system to the cloud is not like opening an online storefront, which even these days, isn’t that complex. Move now – you won’t look back or regret a minute of it.

The solution that’s in the palm of your hands is ShoreTel Connect CLOUD, and here’s why:

Maintain your leadership position                                                            

ShoreTel’s end-to-end solution gives you easy provisioning, business continuity, security, bundled with premium customer service. ShoreTel’s streamlined, all-in-one, communications solution is a convenient, intuitive, low-maintenance solution that end users will quickly adopt.

Drive growth through advanced capabilities

Get a complete end-to-end solution, with phones, software, security, unified communications applications, contact center, and mobility. You also get a dedicated expert – someone with rock-solid IP phone experience. ShoreTel Connect CLOUD is an enterprise-class solution that is stable, and gives you visibility into any service interruptions, outages, and operational information.

You have superior security and control built in

With ShoreTel’s brilliantly simple service plan and a simple user interface, your cloud UC solution is more secure than any other option available today.

By moving to ShoreTel’s Connect CLOUD you won’t be left behind - possibly losing deals, and your competitive advantage.

Shouldn’t you explore through us, as a trusted partner, how ShoreTel Connect CLOUD can transform your business? Give us a call today, and learn why moving your phone system to the cloud is the right choice for your business. Call us at 630-706-8222.

The High Cost of Not Doing Anything About Your Phone System

When was the last time you upgraded your phone system? 7 years ago? 10 years ago? Or was it so long ago you’re not quite sure?  Your aging phone system may be costing more than you think. Not only do you have higher resource costs, higher maintenance costs, infrastructure costs – you also have outdated features, limited mobility capabilities, and fragmented applications and tools. The total costs of not having a unified communications solution to support your business and your customers is likely dragging your organization down.
Let’s start with having a leading phone solution to give your customers the best possible experience

The right cloud phone solution isn’t just ANY cloud phone, it’s one that gives your customers:

A single, simplified way to manage their phones, contacts, instant messaging, conferencing, scheduling and video. Collaboration as easy as making a phone call. Your customers will also have the ability to check for presence, search for experts, send a quick instant message, turn it into a call, add participants, share their desktop, and get a problem solved pronto.

A secure and reliable phone solution. Making sure a hacker doesn't tap calls on a Wi-Fi hot spot, and a plethora of any other security concerns go out the window because of ShoreTel’s Secure-Real-time Transfer Protocol SRTP. Reliability with the highest call quality, phones that are always up and running, reliable service, and an optimally balanced network.

Next, let’s talk about your phone system costs

1.     Maintenance

Once your warranty expires, your options are limited to a maintenance contract or paying for time and materials. When the manufacturer stops providing replacement parts, you’re stuck sourcing used parts on the internet. And, when you find the right part, you’re left wondering what condition it’s in and how long it might last – what a hassle…shopping eBay for parts.

2.     Moving, adding, or changing lines

Scaling up and scaling down is part of doing business, and moving is also part of business. You need a provider that is not going to charge you additional fees for each configuration change. Costs of redundant equipment and trunks to ensure your phone system is always on can be significant. With ShoreTel Connect CLOUD you don’t have additional costs. It’s just always on. And, with Connect CLOUD, your phone can automatically route to a mobile location, adding another layer to your availability.

3.     Voice and data fees for existing services

Being charged extra for more voice, data, or other services may be how your current phone solution works, but not with ShoreTel. A single, predictable, monthly fee allows you to know exactly what you’re paying, and makes budget planning a snap. Additionally, with ShoreTel, network status is available to anyone in real-time on shoreteltrust.com. Any service interruptions, outages, and operation information is viewable live – this is how confident ShoreTel is about its network.

4.     Carrier contract auto-renewals that lock you in

When is the last time you audited your existing bills? Do you know when your current contract renews?  Most business owners don’t realize their existing carrier contracts auto-renew 60 to 90 days before the contract anniversary, triggering early termination fees if you switch providers before the next renewal date.

Now let’s talk about these additional costs

1.     Delays and missed deadlines

With all the other priorities and responsibilities in-house staff have on their plate, it can take longer than necessary to complete simple moves, additions, or changes. Adding new features, if they’re supported, can lead to significant delays and there may be unplanned expenses. Whether your in-house team needs a feature that wasn’t purchased, or requires additional training to implement the feature, you’re left with more surprises and delays.

2.     Quality of service

Bad quality equates to a bad customer experience. Don’t have your customers experience poor connections, blocked calls, and other frustrating call issues that cause them to question the quality of your own offerings.

Finally, we need to talk about the biggest cost of all
1.     Opportunity Costs

Putting off moving to the cloud because you’re focused on other things, such as core business? Why not focus on your core business priorities and let an expert move your phone system to the cloud?

With ShoreTel Connect CLOUD, these costs are obsolete, and what becomes relevant is having modern technology to support your business and your customers. As a hosted managed VoIP phone service, you can choose a service plan that fits your needs and your budget, without all of the hard costs, soft cost and opportunity costs.    

A 10-Question Evaluation for Your Phone System

Today’s business environment is fast-paced and competitive. Technology makes it possible for you to know your customers and your customers to know your business within moments. A customer can give feedback about your business then let others know about their own experience within a few easy clicks.

Most likely, you’re investing in ways to make sure you’re harnessing the power of all of your technological business resources. But what about your phone system?

If you’re not already considering how to get full value from your phone system, you should be.

Savvy business owners or their IT staff know that a cloud phone system can multiply business success by integrating mobility, applications and collaboration under one valuable umbrella.

Can your current phone system do these things?

How to Empower Employee Collaboration with Cloud Communications

Remember the days when the only way you could empower your team to collaborate was in face-to-face meetings that required time and travel that were planned far in advance? That brings up not-so-fond memories of securing landlines, delayed flights, flip charts, windowless meeting rooms and maybe even slide projectors! 

Of course in today’s business world, this is an outdated and impractical proposition. You and your team are mobile, on demand. Most companies today need flexible business communication tools that enable quick teamwork to solve business problems, wherever a worker may be, on multiple devices. 

But how do you create collaboration when you and your staff may be located all over the state, or even the country?

How Your Phone System Hinders Business Growth

Here’s the good news. Business is booming and you’re ready to grow your employee base to meet the increasing level of customer demand. And in today’s business environment that means your employees need to be available anytime, anywhere and on nearly any device, which requires a business phone system with flexibility, mobility and scalability.

The bad news? Your current phone system can’t meet your business’s needs for employee growth and mobility.

Unfortunately in the case of phone technology, most legacy systems aren’t capable of meeting the consistent demand for expansion coupled with flexibility. Depending on your system, you may be limited to a set number of lines, extensions or users. Or worse, you may have to upgrade or replace hardware to accommodate more users.

That costs money and time, and it won’t work for your growing business.