Brotherhood Mutual Achieves Business Continuity & Work-Life Balance During COVID-19
Brotherhood Mutual improved virtual training with Zoom Webinars & implemented Zoom Phone for a streamlined communications experience.
Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana
Challenges: Overly complex webinar solution, legacy phone system couldn’t support disaster recovery
Solutions: Zoom Meetings, Zoom Webinars, Zoom Phone
Business benefits: Seamless webinar experience, ability to integrate phone system into disaster recovery plan, frictionless communication with remote workforce during COVID-19 pandemic
We started piloting Zoom Phone in January, which ended up being a fortunate confluence of events because we started working from home shortly after due to COVID-19. Our executives asked us, ‘What are we going to do about our phone system?’ We were able to get everyone in the company a Zoom Phone number in a week.
Christopher HarveyCISO & Assistant VP of Network Architecture
Founded in 1917, Brotherhood Mutual is a leading insurer of ministries nationwide including nearly 65,000 churches, Christian schools, colleges, camps, and missions. The insurance company offers a wide range of plans, including property, liability, worker’s compensation, cyber liability, mission travel, and commercial auto, and offers services such as payroll and employee health benefit management.
Searching for a better webinar & phone solution
At Brotherhood Mutual, providing top-tier service to policyholders is core to what they do, and employees frequently attend training and professional development sessions via webinar to continuously improve their service. However, the organization’s webinar solution held them back.
“We had a lot of end users that needed to attend webinars for certifications, trainings, things of that nature, and we were using GoToMeeting’s webinar solution for that,” said Mike Benner, Brotherhood Mutual’s Technical Support Team Lead. “Unfortunately, we ran into issues with the software pretty routinely.
As an insurance organization, Brotherhood Mutual depends on uptime for its communications.
“We were using an on-premises solution with Cisco Call Manager, but we wanted to move to a cloud-based PBX phone system,” said Christopher Harvey, Brotherhood Mutual’s Chief Information Security Officer and Assistant Vice President of Network Architecture. “We’re really focused on being able to recover with minimal downtime and loss of data. Our external phone connection was analog-based. If a disaster struck, we’d be able to recover our digital environment within an hour or two, but our call routing and handsets would not be available as quickly.”
“It was really frustrating trying to work with the other cloud-based phone providers,” Harvey added. “Their sales and support teams were difficult to work with, and the whole process just wasn’t going smoothly. We knew that Cisco would work with us to digitize everything and make it recoverable, but we didn’t want to go with a solution that we knew we wouldn’t like in the end.”
Transition to Zoom Phone came just in time
Brotherhood Mutual was introduced to Zoom when the organization implemented Zoom Meetings. The organization soon deployed Zoom Webinars based on Zoom’s reliability.
“We were looking for a new webinar product to replace GoToMeeting, and we heard a lot of great things about Zoom Webinars and we’d had a lot of good experiences using Zoom for meetings over the past year or so prior,” Benner said.
When it came time for Brotherhood Mutual to implement a new cloud-based phone solution, its teams decided to give Zoom a shot.
We were really disappointed with the other [phone] solutions we evaluated, but one day Ryan Tufo, our Technical Support Team Lead, came to me and said, ‘Everything we do with Zoom is awesome. Their software is intuitive and working with their team is amazing. They also have a phone product.'
Christopher HarveyChief Information Security Officer, Assistant VP of Network Architecture, Brotherhood Mutual
“We started piloting Zoom Phone in January, which ended up being a fortunate confluence of events because we started working from home shortly after due to COVID-19. Our executives asked us, ‘What are we going to do about our phone system?’ We were able to get everyone in the company a Zoom Phone number in a week,” Harvey said.
“It really made for a simple transition to a new phone system,” added Judd Johnson, Zoom Project Lead at Brotherhood Mutual. “When we had to work from home and needed outbound calling, Zoom came to the rescue.”
Brotherhood Mutual leveraged Zoom Phone to streamline its external and internal communications, providing a phone system that empowered its employees to work more efficiently and create work-life balance for themselves.
“I get a lot of phone calls, and when I was busy I would just let calls go straight to voicemail and listen to them one-by-one later on,” Harvey said. “With Zoom Phone, I let those calls go to my voicemail and the system sends me the transcript of the voicemail to my email, which allows me to read and prioritize them or just delete them.”
We never had a Business Hours feature with our old solution. But now, I love the fact that if someone calls me after 4 p.m. when I get off work, my phone doesn’t ring. I don’t have to worry about the phone ringing early in the morning before I start work. It’s really freeing.
Aaron SprungerSenior Network Engineer, Brotherhood Mutual
‘Our imagination is probably the only thing limiting our use of it’
With Zoom’s product suite, Brotherhood Mutual was able to build a unified communications infrastructure while providing its employees with the crucial tools they needed to maintain communication during the COVID-19 pandemic. While Brotherhood Mutual’s employees have since moved back into their offices, Zoom will continue to play an important role in supporting flexible communication with external partners and those working remotely.
“It’s been a fun process using Zoom,” Johnson said. “And I can use it in any environment, whether I’m in the office, at home or driving. Zoom is extremely flexible to the point that our imagination is probably the only thing limiting our use of it.”