Housing Solutions has consolidated its fixed line telephony, mobile phone and lone-worker protection under a single contract with Social Telecoms, replacing a number of different suppliers, each with varying contract end-dates, while also generating cost savings.
Using an EU-compliant tendering process, Housing Solutions began by negotiating the terms of its ﬁxed-line telecommunications contract by inviting responses from their incumbent supplier, other national telecoms providers and Social Telecoms.
Richard Harvey, ICT manager, Housing Solutions, said, “We immediately liked Social Telecoms because they were not like normal sales people. In particular, we were impressed by their price transparency. They are signiﬁcantly cheaper, helping us to reduce costs by over 25 per cent. We also like the social aspect of what Social Telecoms does because it ﬁts in with our own values.”
Housing Solutions’ lone worker protection contract was awarded to Social Telecoms using a service from Guardian 24, closely followed by another benchmarking exercise; this time for their mobile phone requirements.
The mobile phone airtime and hardware contract was secured by Social Telecoms as part of a converged ﬁxed-line, mobile voice and data package, renewing the terms of the original ﬁxed line contract and bringing additional savings in the process.
Housing Solutions has 370 mobile connections which were previously on a tariff based on usage. Social Telecoms moved them over to a ﬁxed-price contract with the option to upgrade to 4G at little extra cost.
The converged package came a signiﬁcant hardware ‘fund’ but Housing Solutions chose to retain its existing handsets and tablets because they had already been recently upgraded so the hardware fund went straight to the housing provider in cash via Social Telecoms.
The final part of Housing Solutions’ contract was Social Telecoms’ wi-fi service for digital inclusion that offers affordable, ﬂexible internet access to tenants without them being tied into a long-term contract or paying for more than they need. Social Telecoms designed the networks, provisioned the connectivity and installed the infrastructure for eight sheltered and supported housing schemes as well as a general needs new-build apartment block.
All the wi-fi networks are completely autonomous to Housing Solutions’ own network and are maintained by Social Telecoms on its behalf. Tenants have access to the wi-fi on pay-as-you-go terms for a nominal price of £2.10 per week for unlimited usage.