Sylvie Gauvin and her partner Pierre Bouchard started their telephony company almost a quarter of a century ago and continue to succeed in a very crowded and competitive market.
Since 1985, ISQ Telephonie Inc. of Quebec has been serving the region with a variety of telephony solutions, including Internet Protocol (IP) and traditional PBX phones from Mitel and Panasonic as well as conferencing, messaging and mobility products and services.
ISQ has 1,500 customers across all sectors but its principle market is still health care said company vice-president and co-owner, Gauvin.
“We have all the major hospitals in Quebec City and the Ministry of Health at the provincial level,” she said.
Hospitals in the region have been using ISQ’s Mitel solution for almost 20 years and have been able to upgrade from PBX to newer IP-based telephony solutions thanks to the flexibility of the systems to use both technologies, old and new.
In health care, where funding is not always available, it is important to offer a solution to the customer that saves money. Mitel’s products, said Gauvin, allow customers to use traditional PBX phone lines and newer IP technology to protect the investments of the customer. ISQ began installing IP and traditional solutions together in 2000. “This way the customer can keep the traditional portion and add the IP portion to the basic installation,” said Gauvin. “We come in with an IP solution in addition to the traditional product so this is the reason why they do not have to throw everything away as they would with another product. They add the IP options for a reasonable price to their installed systems.”
One of the main reasons that ISQ’s solutions save its customers money is because of the possibility of networking. ISQ, for example, has one customer that has three hospitals on its site and now has a centralized reception for all 8,000 telephones.
“They don’t have to have receptionists in each and every hospital,” said Gauvin. “That saves them a lot of money.”
Gauvin added that IP allows user sites to have only one system instead of two or more, allowing them to save money and have a system that is reliable.
In addition to cost savings, Gauvin said customers’ main concerns also include security and reliability of their telephony systems. Gauvin said customers can count on their service because they are a local company, which gives them a distinct advantage. ISQ has a policy to answer an urgent customer call within an hour.
“Our service makes us unique,” she said, adding ISQ has a service point near Quebec City and Montreal. “We have a good reputation and people know us because we have a lot of well-trained technicians. This is more important than being national.”
ISQ’s service is so exceptional it recently won a Mitel award for the best dealer service in Canada, making them the number one Mitel telephony solution provider in Canada.
“This is very important because the business of everybody is based on the telephony.”