Going Virtual With Unified Communications: AMSUS The Society of Federal Health Professionals

Posted by Jason Firch on May 3, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Going virtual with unified communications AMSUS

AMSUS Implements eXos Unified Communications Solution by OSIbeyond

AMSUS transitioned to a virtual office model by leveraging eXos Unified Communications based on Skype for Business, to enable staff to better communicate and collaborate from different physical locations.

The leadership at AMSUS decided to take the association into the virtual world by having staff establish full time home offices.  The existing phone system was limited and made it difficult for staff to work from home. The eXos Unified Communication solution provided by OSIbeyond has resulted in several key benefits:

  1. Solved remote teleworking issues
  2. Reduced overhead by implementing a virtual office model
  3. Enhanced staff communication and collaboration

“Our work from home policy was drafted knowing the system was already in place and the capabilities it would provide. With the assistance of our HR consultant we built the new policies around the capabilities of the eXos Unified Communications package.”

- Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant, AMSUS

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The Society of Federal Health Professionals (AMSUS), a non-profit educational association with a staff of 9, has been in operation since 1891. AMSUS was chartered by Congress in 1903 to advance the knowledge of all health professionals in federal medicine.

Complicated Phone System Limited Telework Capabilities For AMSUS

Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant at AMSUS described the frustrations of the old phone system including difficulty in forwarding calls from the auto attendant to a live person, complicated programming of the phone using buttons, and only the administrator being able to make any programming changes.

 “We had some staff that teleworked one day a week and having them forward their desk phones to their cell phone or home phone was problematic with our IP Office system and those days we really didn’t communicate unless it was by email.”

– Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant, AMSUS

The Solution

AMSUS required a solution that would allow them to eliminate their office space and enable staff to effectively work remotely from home. The eXos Unified Communications platform provided by OSIbeyond offered a truly unified and fully integrated solution consisting of a VoIP hosted PBX phone system, web meeting and conferencing solution, instant messaging and collaboration, and integrated email in one single platform.  

“We owned our own building in Bethesda, MD… It was no longer good business to own our building… so we began looking into options… I first looked at the eXos Unified Communications package as an option for when we moved into a smaller workspace. Why install a more traditional wired phone system if there were better options?”

- Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant, AMSUS

By the time a decision was made to go virtual, every staff member had a company laptop and all the employee had to have for their home office was a reliable internet connection and office furniture of their choice. The organization purchased a printer/scanner for those that needed one.

“We made the decision to provide everyone a USB headset to use, or staff could opt to use the mic and speakers built into the computers… and with that we eliminated the need for a desk phone or having to purchase cell phones.”

- Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant, AMSUS

The Deployment

The deployment of eXos Unified Communications is relatively easy and does not require significant disruption to the staff or organization.  

 “We wanted to keep our same DID numbers so OSIbeyond worked with the service provider to port over the numbers…OSIbeyond had installed the software and provided basic user instructions so staff could be “ready”. We had the written user instructions and OSIbeyond provided a live training session for the entire staff. And once those numbers ported over, the system was live and our computers started ringing.”

- Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant, AMSUS

OSIbeyond has provided AMSUS with continuing support for the eXos Unified Communications solution. Due to the close integration of the new system with Microsoft applications staff were already familiar with, AMSUS employees with a diverse range of technical skillsets were able to rapidly adopt the new platform once initial training was completed.

AMSUS Implements Virtual Office Model with OSIbeyond’s Platform

Since implementing the eXos Unified Communications solution, AMSUS has sold their office building and moved to a virtual office model with staff working from home. The new solution has aided staff collaboration to ensure a smooth transition to a virtual model.    

“Our IM and phone conversations are very productive…the disruptions are less…and being able to share screens has been a huge benefit. We practiced with each other as we learned how to use the system. We wanted our move to the virtual environment to be transparent to everyone…and we have been successful with that.”

- Diane Condrick, Executive Assistant, AMSUS

In addition, AMSUS staff have enjoyed valuable new collaboration features offered by the solution. “We no longer need a conference call service or a conference bridge system…each staff member has their own conference call line and can set up their own calls, the ability to share screens and having virtual staff meetings.” said Diane Condrick.

The single most important reason AMSUS would recommend the eXos Unified Communication to other nonprofits and associations is because of the “flexibility” it provides to staff, as stated by Diane Condrick.

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Topics: Case Study, Unified Communications