This week I’d like to talk about LA Fitness and its Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 R2 (now called Lync Server 2010 with the latest release) solution. As LA Fitness has continued to open sports clubs all over the US and Canada, it ended up with many different communications solutions that didn’t always work well together and were expensive to maintain. To reduce these costs and support future growth, it began looking for a new solution, comparing a Microsoft solution with solutions from Cisco and Avaya. It ultimately chose Microsoft because we offer a complete communications solution at the lowest cost and it liked our product roadmap. “What really made the decision for us was the fact that with the Microsoft solution, we could solve our telecommunication problems, and we could get all of these other capabilities [conferencing, instant messaging, and presence] as well,” explains George Bedar, Chief Information Officer at LA Fitness.
Working with Microsoft Gold Certified Partner CDW to plan and deploy the solution, LA Fitness replaced a number of PBX systems and other communications solutions with a single, centralized Office Communications Server deployment. It saved a lot of money on maintenance and provided employees with communications tools that all work together. LA Fitness also reduced costs by using SIP trunking to send telephone calls on an IP network, so it didn’t need special telephony equipment or phone lines. “The biggest factor in our cost savings was that with the Enterprise Voice solution we were able to eliminate the PBX systems in our clubs,” says Bedar, “resulting in less expensive telecommunications.” By eliminating PBX systems and phone lines in clubs and reducing long distance charges, LA Fitness will save well over a half million dollars a year.
Employees are using the new communications capabilities to improve customer service, increase sales, and improve internal systems. LA Fitness also developed a CEBP (Communication Enabled Business Process) system using Office Communications Server to call members automatically to alert them if their dues payments have not been received on schedule, so members can pay on time. Members can also call into the system to change their accounts or pay dues.
I really like this story because LA Fitness is doing so much with Office Communications Server to improve processes across the business. Plus, they are saving more than $500,000 per year! The results LA Fitness achieved show the potential that Lync Server can offer to our customers.
Product Manager, Microsoft Lync