Greenfield, Rural Electric Cooperative (REC)
Launch Voice, Expand Solution Suite, RDOF Requirement
Jasper County REMC is a rural electric cooperative that serves over 8,573 consumers and 9,617 meters of fiber across 1,227 electric miles of line in Northwest Indiana.
To apply for Rural Digital Opportunity Funding (RDOF), Jasper County REMC needed to expand their solution suite to include voice. With no previous telecommunications experience, Jasper County REMC’s Board of Directors wanted an “easy button” — an established voice provider to guide them through the intricacies of the voice setup, productization, and management.
Jasper had the choice of a local telco or a nationwide voice service provider; however, they were cautious because relationships with local vendors had hurt them in the past.
Successful market launches and cloud transformations require more effort, coordination, and subject matter expertise than most business leaders recognize, the Board of Directors spearheaded their network transformation by directly engaging Alianza for voice services.
To secure RDOF support to subsidize the construction and operation of their broadband networks in underserved communities, Jasper County REMC needed to foray into the world of telecommunications. As a new voice provider starting from scratch, Jasper needed a solution, platform, and vendor with proven expertise they could trust.
Jasper County REMC did not want to leverage an over-the-top (OTT) provider that would compete with them by selling direct to customers, so they sought a voice solution that would help them meet the following goals:
As a new voice communications provider, the setup tasks were initially overwhelming; however, Alianza’s Customer Enablement team guided Jasper through the entire deployment process, helping them deliver a safe implementation every step of the way. Alianza offers a true cloud-native, service provider-built model that offered Jasper a clear path to healthy margins, support that extends to helping them grow at their pace, clarity into call detail records, and a powerful voice solution.
Jasper evaluated softswitch-based vendors such as Momentum Telecom but felt they lacked in reliability. “You guys are a true cloud provider; Momentum hasn’t gone total virtual yet with redundancy. We’re starting a brand-new network from the ground up here. We figured, why not go with the latest and greatest instead of having an actual hard switch somewhere. So, we decided to go with Alianza,” said Chris Wilcox, IT System Admin & Technical Services Manager at Jasper County REMC..
Alianza’s list of fully vetted Certified Device provided an “easy button” for Jasper County REMC to ensure the best functionality and interoperability with our cloud communications platform. Smooth interoperability with Calix devices saved Jasper substantial time and effort that would have been spent testing devices.
Residential Voice is a powerful product that enables Jasper County REMC to enhance the user experience, increase profitability, and meet RDOF requirements.
“The biggest reason we went down the VoIP solution route was because government funding required it. Residential voice is not as prevalent today as it used to be . . . but we’ve got to monetize it, if not make a little bit more on top, and VoIP systems [platforms] are where we’re going to make up the difference.”
With predictable, healthy voice margins, Residential Voice revenue helps accelerate the return on their broadband buildout investment.
Alianza’s turnkey cloud communications platform enables Jasper County REMC to implement voice services at their own pace while providing all the support and resources they need along the way. Jasper County REMC’s journey into broadband began with trust in Alianza and a collaboration that has created new voice opportunities for their business.
“Alianza’s Onboarding team has been our greatest cheerleader through all of it. They kept notes and reminded us to check on things with other providers to keep us on track. I tell them, ‘You shouldn’t even care about these things,’ but that’s the Alianza onboarding process for you.”
“We had a board member call and mentioned her friend called and couldn’t get a hold of anybody. We were able to research using Alianza’s Admin Portal and find out that the customer had always called after hours. Two years ago, on our own phone system, we wouldn’t have had this visibility.”
“Having a list of devices that work was part of the easy button for us. There’s a million VoIP phones out there, and it was fantastic to just be like, ‘Okay, you guys work with this and this, let’s go to Amazon to see which one we want.’ I don’t have to test it.”
“In so many distinct aspects, we’ve really wished that all our other vendors were like Alianza. Your knowledge database is fantastic, and part of the reason why we feel so comfortable is that everything we need is usually right there and we can easily find it.”
“The most impressive is how intuitive that system is. Half of the features we can train the customer to manage themselves, and [for other things], we just hired a new person, and within a day, she’s got it.”
“Once we got over the initial learning curve, [Alianza’s platform] saved us a good amount of time. It has allowed us to operate more efficiently as a company.”
To exceed customer expectations and deliver great customer experiences, you need to take a thoughtful approach to selecting digital technology. Your solution should be built with features that appeal to consumer’s digital driven lifestyle.
Let us show you why our cloud platform is the ideal solution for your unique challenges. Contact us today or select a date on the calendar to request a meeting.