Telecoms systems migration for specialist construction & services company

TSG helps Universal Sealants Limited migrate legacy telephone systems throughout their sites

The customer

Based in Washington, the North East of England, Universal Sealants (UK) Limited (USL) was established in 1981. Since then, the Group has grown steadily expanding its portfolio of specialist construction products and services throughout the UK and several export markets. Now part of RPM Inc., a $4.5 billion company quoted on the NYSE, USL comprises the creation of subsidiaries including USL BridgeCare, USL StructureCare, Nufins, Visul Systems, Fibergate UK, Pitchmastic PmB Ltd and Pipeline & drainage Systems Ltd.

The Group operates as a manufacturer, supplier and installer offering clients a broad spectrum of expertise from specification through to application on bridges, highways, rail infrastructure, car parks throughout the UK, Europe and the Middle East. The Group has several sites spread across the UK including, Stockton and Sheffield as well as Dubai along with a joint venture operation in Singapore.

The customer objectives

USL had a good relationship with TSG having worked together on other IT projects. It was through their account management that they recognised TSG as a telecoms solution provider. The business operated a number of legacy telecoms systems throughout their offices which TSG was keen to help them consolidate and bring together onto one platform.

Neil Bennett, Co-Managing Director at USL adds, “We had a good working relationship with TSG on our IT side of things. They recognised gaps in our telephone system which made us review our full telecoms package. It would have been pointless trying to fix one element without the other. We needed a system that could be easily accessible and utilised by all business units across the whole group.”

The TSG Solution

TSG introduced a hybrid solution encompassing Digital, Analogue and IP technology in order to provide USL with the best solution for the business regardless of the existing wiring infrastructure at each site.

TSG blended Mitel technology with SIP services [used to control voice data over the Internet] and WAN connectivity to provide USL with a seamless migration of all legacy telephone systems onto one platform. The solution also incorporated centralised voicemail, directory and administration.

The benefits to USL

USL's legacy telephone packages onto one robust platform has massively benefitted the business in terms of its Voice capabilities. USL's voice and data traffic is now fully integrated into one physical network, removing the necessity for ISDN and analogue configurations that the business previously used throughout its regional locations.

This technology not only provides the business with substantial cost savings on both line rental and call charges, it has removed overheads associated with the maintenance of legacy equipment.

Furthermore, the hybrid telecoms solution supports USL’s future growth with the ability to add, move or change users free of charge under their support agreement with TSG.

The SIP [Session Initiation Protocol] trunk service deployed by TSG through a WAN connection means that USL no longer spend money with different suppliers on various support contracts, and has enabled them to retain their local presence office telephone number [STD number] as well as utilising non-geographic numbers where appropriate.

Calls made throughout the UK to the regional sites are simply passed through the central system in Washington and then directed over the WAN to the regional sites. This added functionality to redirect external regional calls around the business has provided USL with much improved customer response times and service.

Even internally USL’s communications have improved with the VoIP system in place. Neil says, “Thanks to the new system and unique extension numbers our internal communication is much better. Not only that, the savings we’ve seen as a result of the new telecoms system has been quite significant. It’s meant that budget has been freed up to spend elsewhere in the business.”

Staff have a dedicated phone line and extension number with the ability to call site to site free of charge. Each extension number is conveniently available on any site too, meaning staff can easily log into a telephone using their extension irrespective of which site they are based at each day.

This also provides the capacity required for USL to deal with the increasing volume of customer calls. The human resource at USL can be pooled, regardless of the employee’s geographical location – enabling staff anywhere to deal direct with customer queries and support issues.

Monitoring of the SIP Trunks, ISDN Trunks, WAN and local wiring infrastructure by TSG means that from a supplier perspective, any issues identified by USL on the system can be pinpointed and dealt with immediately.

Placing their full telecoms solution with TSG means USL have the additional value of having just one supplier to contact in the event of a problem. Beforehand, they faced the challenges that come with juggling various suppliers, trying to identify which one to contact dependant on the affected element of the telecoms system; a laborious task.

When asked if Neil would recommend TSG’s telecoms solution based on his experience he says, “Yes absolutely, we’re really happy with our telecoms package. Any project comes with its challenges but the team we had from TSG were with us until everything was up and running.”

The future for USL and TSG

At the moment there are no requirements for TSG to help USL other than maintenance of their telecoms solution, although Neil is keen to point out as a result of their successful telecoms project “there may be opportunities with our associate RPM companies in the future.”

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