NDA-CIS Case Study

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NDA-CIS Case Study
After an extensive search, National Distribution Alliance, the largest independently owned and operated newspaper wholesaler in the country chose ShoreTel’s simple Unified Communication (UC) solution based on its award-winning IP business phone system, provided by NacTel, the award-winning communications sales and service organization, headquartered in Plainview and Hauppauge, NY.  

Why NacTel and ShoreTel? The answer was as simple as ShoreTel’s “brilliantly simple” solutions set.  NDA’s core business—distributing hundreds of periodicals to more than 10,000 merchants—is a 24/7, 365-day per year operation. NDA provides time-critical service to publishers and merchants across the metropolitan area. To this end, NDA’s choice of a communications solution was based on these key objectives:
  • Achieve operating efficiencies and provide best-in-class service to merchants, publishers and field personnel  
  • Unify operational communications across five regional distribution centers
  • Provide redundancy, route diversity and survivability for each of the company’s distribution centers
  • Control the system via an accessible, single-source web application, even on a remote basis
  • Manage scalable growth
  • Deliver intuitive and easy-to-use call center administration and supervision  
  • Provide merchants access to daily delivery status and account information via Interactive Voice Response and make CSR intervention optional
  • Eliminate wait times and abandons when contacting CSRs and the ability to request a callback rather than to hold in a queue
NDA operates more than150 dedicated routes daily. In this scenario, anything that affects delivery – inclement weather, a publisher’s late close or a truck breakdown – needs to be managed and communicated to the field immediately. Proactive communications protect sales, manage merchant expectations and mitigate complaints. NDA’s new system enables custom messages and immediate deployment. If a delivery exception occurs, NDA is able to post messages for merchants calling to learn if their outlet is affected and if to expect an on-time, late or recovered delivery. NacTel’s strategic initiatives, using the ShoreTel system, give NDA this ability.

Commenting on the relationship, NDA President & COO Mike Pouchie shared what led the company to choose NacTel: “This was an important project for us; we had to get it right.  We’re a 365-day operation so we had to transition during our production cycle. That made our choice of NacTel as a partner even more important.  NacTel did a great job for us and we’re providing better service to our publishers and merchants as a result“

Sally SooHoo, one of NDA’s Customer Care experts, added, “NacTel's presentation was informative and provided specifics that related to the applications we were looking to implement.  The account rep was knowledgeable about call center applications; he shared examples of how other clients used the proposed system. Another major factor was in-house training; NacTel provided it while other vendors proposed using a “training service”.  NacTel's proposed configuration was more comprehensive in addressing our operational needs, both short and long-term and implementation went smoothly. We didn’t have any down time.”

Regarding early results, Mike remarked, “Now that the product is installed and we have several months of use under our belts, we’ve improved our call handling and operational efficiencies. We’re able to provide dedicated service to diverse groups of callers, including our merchants, publishers and even our field/delivery personnel. This allows us to handle calls quickly, to reduce or eliminate wait times and to improve efficiency.”

NacTel President Jamie Buswell commented, “We understood from the get-go that the value that NDA was offering its stakeholders was the instantaneous communications and infrastructure that makes NDA almost indispensable to these publishers and merchants.  There was no doubt that ShoreTel’s system capabilities was perfect for NDA today, and its rich feature set paves the way for future enhancements to the way it manages and relates to its customer base. In fact, we are talking about future initiatives such as expanding IVR and call center applications as well as automating processes and integration of the phone and CIS systems, all possible within the ShoreTel environment and all geared to give merchants even more opportunity to query the system and manage their own accounts.”

About National Distribution Alliance: NDA is the largest independently owned and operated newspaper wholesaler in the country, representing over 200 newspapers including the New York Times, USA Today, the New York Daily News, New York Post, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Diario de Mexico, Sing Tao, the Irish Echo and more than 250 magazines, including People, Time, Vanity Fair, Star, Maxim, Cosmopolitan, National Enquirer, People en Espanol, Vanidades and O Magazine. NDA services more than 10,000 merchants in the New York Metro area daily, helping publishers reach more outlets, and to do so more cost-effectively than they can do through their own direct delivery.
 
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