Berkshire Hathaway Home Services (BHHS) is a residential real estate brokerage franchise. The company manages multiple offices throughout the state of Maryland. Each office location is staffed by numerous real estate agents.
As a brand new real estate franchise, BHHS experienced significant growth in a relatively short period of time. The company required a reliable voice solution to eliminate PBX hardware redundancy throughout their network of office locations. In addition, the company was looking for the ability to reduce call expenses while maintaining a high voice quality service to ensure agent-client relationships. The firm’s agents also wanted a means to communicate with customers while they were both inside and outside of their office. As a result of the rapid growth in the number of offices and system users, there was a need for a user-friendly interface to enable company administrators to independently modify calling features without the requirement of receiving assistance from any GTB customer service personnel.
GTB designed and installed the Flex*Point™ (hosted PBX) solution at BHHS’s offices around the Baltimore area. In order to ensure voice quality, all offices were connected to the GTB network over an ethernet copper solution. All offices were equipped with Aastra IP phones (now Mitel) and other hardware accessories. To facilitate user management, all company administrators were provided with a web-based GUI interface, allowing them to easily modify any call feature for the general office as well as any individual user. All users were assigned local extensions which allowed calls and messages to be transferred between the various offices as if they were domiciled in one location. Since all calls were now handled as intercom messages, the company significantly reduced its local and long distance expense.
The hosted solution also allowed BHHS to remove all old PBX equipment from their various office locations and eliminated any and all maintenance expenses associated with those PBX systems. Agents were provided with the Accession mobile app (now Max UC Softphone), which is compatible with both Apple and Android smartphones. The Max UC Softphone provides a virtual office extension over the agent’s cellphone. All features usually associated with a desk extension were now automatically transferred to the agent’s personal cell phone, including the ability to answer any call originally intended for the agent’s desk. Other features provided by the app include: visual messaging of office voice mail, call logs, chat and remote extension management. Agents who call their customers from their cell phone only show their office caller ID, eliminating the inadvertent disclosure of their personal cell phone number.