The Institute for Excellence in Writing trains teachers how to teach children to express themselves clearly and articulately in writing. The institute's seminars for parents, students, and teachers have helped transform many a reluctant writer and have equipped educators with powerful tools to dramatically improve students' skills. The Institute has been an OnSIP customer for three and a half years and currently has 35 users. Cameron Covey, Manager of Information Systems at the Institute for Excellence in Writing, shares their OnSIP Hosted VoIP experience.
1) Tell us about the Institute for Excellence in Writing— Please provide a brief history and introduction.
The Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) is dedicated to training teachers and homeschooling parents so they can teach their students to communicate effectively in school and throughout their lives. We publish language arts curriculum for students from kindergarten up into college. Founded in 1996 by Andrew Pudewa, IEW now serves schools and families throughout North America and around the world.
2) What do you do at the Institute for Excellence in Writing, and what role did you play in choosing a new phone system?
I'm Cameron Covey and I am Manager of Information Systems at the Institute for Excellence in Writing. This entails managing large website development, small internal database applications, and designing/managing the phone systems. I research and compared about 3 systems before deciding OnSIP was for us.
Company founder Andrew Pudewa at Cincinnatti Great Homeschool Convention
3) How does the Institute for Excellence in Writing teach students to communicate confidently and effectively?
Beginning with the basics, we teach students how to write with clear structure while incorporating a variety of stylistic elements. Through the process of learning to write, students learn how to organize their thoughts and communicate them in the most effective way. Courses in reading, spelling, literature, poetry, public speaking, and entrepreneurship add to the student's storehouse of skills and knowledge, allowing them to listen, speak, read, write, and think clearly and with confidence.
4) Tell us about your transition to VoIP. What were you looking for in a phone system?
We were located in CA about four years ago and had four POTS lines (one was dedicated for fax). In preparation to relocate the company to OK, we decided we needed a system to expand our incoming call needs. The main reason we switched to VOIP was the cost and the capability to create extensions with ease.
5) How did you find OnSIP, and why did you choose us?
Found via Google searches and read many reviews. We chose OnSIP due to the cost and to the ability to have ACD Queues which was a must for us.
6) How many phones does the Institute for Excellence in Writing have? Where are the phones located within the office?
We have 18 phones throughout the office building with about 12 of them in our Customer Service cubicles.
7) What make/model of phones did the Institute for Excellence in Writing choose and why?
We are currently using the Polycom SoundPoint IP 330 or 331. Cost was our main concern here, and we needed simple, reliable phones.
8) How much money has OnSIP saved the Institute for Excellence in Writing?
Since we switched over three and half years ago, about $25,000.
9) What are your favorite OnSIP features?
ACD Queues are great (still hoping for more features to be added to the Queues), unlimited extension, and the phone configuration boot server.