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Menasha Joint School District

Menasha, WI
Menasha Joint School District

I would categorized (ESG) as superior to other vendors. Just because of their customer service. Their willingness to work with you. To make the entire experience, not only for us, but other customers superior and that sort of commitment shines through in everything they do.

Cynthia Morris, Telecom and Network Admin.

Project Scope

When Cynthia Morris, Network and Telecom Admin. for Menasha Joint School District (MJSD), began her extensive research into what phone system would best suit the district, ESG wasn’t even on her radar. Only after bringing up the project with a friend, Stacy Rohr of Fox Communities Credit Union (FCCU), did she become aware of ESG and what they were able to do for FCCU.

“[Stacy Rohr] was raving about the process, the customer service, about everything in the transaction. I contacted ESG because of the great reference she gave,” explained Morris.

This was after Morris had already conducted extensive research on her own. Beginning with the system itself, she compared hosted vs. non-hosted; then compared the various brands such as Shoretel, Cisco, Avaya and eventually settled on a comparison between Cisco and Mitel MiVoice solutions.

“Of the systems we looked at, Mitel and Cisco looked very robust. Mitel looked like it would be relatively easy to manage in-house and it had all the features we were looking for,” said Morris.

With the decision to go with a non-hosted solution Morris chose three vendors to come in and do live demo’s with the selection team. The field was narrowed to two systems to move to Request For Proposal (RFP).

In the RFP process Morris assembled a team of IT staff, a superintendent, secretaries, and a principal to attend demos from the two vendors. ESG was able to bring in phones to MJSD and create a mini network to demonstrate the system in a live environment. The demo exemplified ESG’s knowledge of education environments, according to Morris.

“It was very helpful because they understood the needs of a school district versus the needs of a business,” Morris recalled. “There are some things, such as emergencies, which you need to address in the educational environment that you don’t have to address in a business.”

One of the key features of MJSD’s RFP was the emergency applications of the new system. They wanted a non-emergency help button teachers could press to directly call into the main office and allow administrators to listen in on what was happening in the classroom so they could act appropriately. Other features requested included phantom voicemails for teachers, redundancy among systems, voice mail notification to Gmail, and the potential for E-911 down the road.

The task of customizing such a system was met with ease by ESG’s design team and then handed off to the install technicians who worked with MJSD to meet their tight timeline for implementation.

“We wanted to implement the [Mitel system] in the few days between when the school year ended and summer school started,” said Morris. “ESG had the manpower here in order to complete the process in two days.”

The relationship with Morris and MJSD didn’t end upon installation. Morris has been in continuous contact with the people at ESG and she believes that makes all the difference.

“They’re always willing to work with you to find a better way and the customer service I’ve received after the sale is outstanding and for me that’s the most important part of a relationship with a vendor,” said Morris. “How you’re treated after the sale. Their willingness to make your customer service experience the best possible.”