Technology Decision Makers

last person joined: 22 days ago 

A group for those in nonprofit IT decision-making roles to connect with peers and share best practices. This Technology Decision Makers group is for nonprofit IT or MIS Directors/Managers as well as CIOs and CTOs to connect with their peers and share best practices. Topics for discussion include, but are not limited to: hardware and software management, product reviews, emerging technology, best practices, collaborating effectively with other departments, and management conundrums. Membership is restricted to IT staff at nonprofit organizations.

Zoom Phone / Google Voice

  • 1.  Zoom Phone / Google Voice

    Posted Jun 27, 2019 09:38
    On yesterday's community call both Zoom Phone and Google Voice were discussed. By coincidence, yesterday after the call Zoom granted us a "free trial" for Zoom phone. It's not technically open to organizations less than 50 people yet I don't think, but we had made several inquiries a few months back. If anyone has questions about Zoom Phone, I now have something to look at.

    Also, if anyone is successful in getting a Demo or nonprofit pricing information from Google Voice, we'd be interested. Since we're a Gsuite organization I'm inclined toward Google Voice since it would be part of my existing admin console but staff are hesitant about changing from a normal desk phone to a softphone without a lot of convincing. A demo would go a long way toward that endeavor.

    Stephanie Henyard
    Information Technology
    Society for College and University Planning
    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline

  • 2.  RE: Zoom Phone / Google Voice

    Posted Jul 19, 2019 14:22

    I just wanted to provide a follow up to the group about Zoom Phones.  I recently migrated 70 users from our local hosted provider to Zoom Phones.  The migration process went well and all of my users are happy with the system.

    Here is a little background:

    • Previous system was a hosted IP system by a local provider.
    • We had 70 users with 70 Polycom Soundpoint 450 deskphones.
    • Out of the 70 users, 10 use their phones all the time.  The rest use them a handful of times per week.
    • Zoom was our default meeting provider at the time.


    Goal was to reduce phone cost and provide staff with more features, like a Business App on their mobile phone.


    I looked into national and local providers with my final 2 being Zoom and Ring Central.  Overall we decided to go with Zoom because of price and the fact that Ring Central resells Zoom Meetings as their own.


    What I like:

    • We were able to reduce our phone cost by 1/3rd.
    • Straightforward pricing that allowed us to mix and match features for staff needs.
    • Integrates right into the Zoom client our staff are already familiar with.
    • A few of our staff members do not need to make external calls from their phone. We can issue an extension and a voicemail that is reachable internally and externally at no cost.
    • Common area phones for staff to share.
    • A majority of staff are using Zoom Phone from their computer and/or cell phone.  No more hard phones needed.  It makes desk hoteling and working remotely easier.
    • Call quality has been great.  Zoom provides a dashboard where I can monitor call quality.  I can easily provide feedback to the user if they have a bad audio experience.  Most of the time this is caused by trying to make a call using cellular data in an area with poor reception.
    • Support has been quick to answer my questions.
    • I was able request the day of my number port and all numbers were ported over within 20 minutes of the time I was given.


    What could be improved:

    • Customer Success Process.  Once I signed the contract, I was emailed a how to guide and I was pretty much on my own.  Support was quick to answer my questions, but I did not feel I had a person leading me along to make sure the implementation went well.  I setup all the new user accounts, provisioned all the phone accounts, and requested the number ports by following the guides.
    • General user documentation was lacking.  They provided all the how-to guides but I found that they were not written in a way that would be easily digestible to my staff.  I ended up creating my own.



    If you are looking at Zoom, feel free to reach out to me as a reference for their system.



    Tim Reich
    IT & Facilities Manager
    Gulf of Maine Research Institute
    Portland, ME

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline

  • 3.  RE: Zoom Phone / Google Voice

    Posted Jul 23, 2019 12:23


    Thanks for this level of detail. We became a Zoom customer in May. With 50 users we qualified to have a dedicated Customer Success Manager and she's been more than great. I "think" 50 is the minimum # for a CSM. I would love to know how you cost justify the Zoom Phone vs a phone system, as I am struggling to figure out how to manage the much higher cost for any hosted VOIP system.


    Richard Wollenberger
    Director, Information Technology & HIPAA Compliance and Security Officer
    Parents as Teachers
    St. Louis MO

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline