Communications as a Service (CaaS) Featured Article

MAR Pizza Group Enhances Performance with Unified Office Total Connect Now Service

March 17, 2015

The late New York City Mayor Ed Koch used to greet press and constituents with his trademark, “How am I doing?”  Given the importance of being able to leverage information in the incredibly competitive quick restaurant service (aka “fast food”) business, that question has taken on tremendous relevance.  It has led leading-edge franchise owners to invest in next generation communications solutions that can provide timely analytics to gain a competitive edge.

An example of such investment in next generation technology is the MAR Pizza Group, one of the largest Domino’s (DPZ) franchisees with more than 70 stores across the U.S. It has deployed Unified Office, Inc.’s Total Connect Nowsm service with Visual Performance Suite. The solution gives MAR Pizza store-level and franchise-wide performance and business analytics specifically engineered to provide actionable intelligence to store managers and franchise owners. 

For those not familiar with Total Connect Now, it is an SDN-based hybrid cloud managed Voice-over-IP (VoIP) and Unified Communications (News - Alert) (UC) services solution targeted at small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). It integrates:

  • Voice communications,
  • Service-level monitoring
  • Business continuity
  • Business analytics tools

The solution incorporates Unified Office’s unique adaptive Highest Quality Routing(HQR) for end-to-end service quality, and Business Continuity “shadowing” to ensure high availability operation over one or more redundant uplink paths.

For SMB franchise owners such as MAR Pizza, the Unified Office solution enables them  to better manage their store operations by providing an at-a-glance view of customer service responsiveness in real-time, as well as on-demand and scheduled reporting for any store, or combination of stores, accessible remotely via the Visual Performance Suite’s web-enabled Manager’s Portal.  In short, this is real-time visualization of how they are doing.

Keeping an eye on the pies

As franchisees go, the MAR Pizza Group is big and is on an aggressive expansion plan.  Its expansion in the Chicago area with Unified Office, for instance, includes its 7th Domino’s “Pizza Theater” dining experience.

“Excellence in customer service demands a philosophy of teamwork and reinforcement of operational best practices,” said Robert Scheiper, co-owner and CIO, MAR Pizza Group. “Total Connect Now and its Visual Performance Suite enable us to service a higher volume of customers while measuring the level of store performance and quality of customer engagements throughout the day. By using Visual Performance Suite’s reporting and analytics, MAR Pizza Group has also experienced significant improvements in operational efficiencies to date with our current deployments in Southern California, and we plan to deploy Total Connect Now throughout our franchise operations in California, Illinois, and South Carolina.”

As noted in the announcement of the selection of Total Connect Now, MAR Pizza has seen the following benefits from its Total Connect Now deployments:

  • Increased revenue as a result of technology innovations, process improvements, effectiveness, and larger average order size.
  • Increased ability to handle higher call volumes.
  • Prevention of revenue loss along with ensured business continuity during an unforeseen outage.

“Unified Office is pleased to provide MAR Pizza with unique capabilities required to service the operational needs of its large franchise operation, and to enable store personnel to respond more effectively to their customers.” said Ray Pasquale, CEO & Founder of Unified Office. “In today’s highly competitive Quick Service Restaurant marketplace, timeliness and excellence in customer service are key drivers of customer loyalty and growth in same store sales.”

In discussing the MAR Pizza selection with TMCnet, Pasquale noted, that as one of Domino’s top 10 percent owners, and with expansion as the driver of revenue growth, MAR knew that the old way of connecting and evaluating the performance of its locations was no longer sufficient.  “They knew that each branch was still using 6 PSTN lines. They realized they needed something better for connectivity, and needed analytics to enable them to capture missing revenue generation opportunities,” explained Pasquale. 

He added that:  “Total Connect Now enables Quick Service Restaurants to take advantage of what the cloud has to offer in general and what we can provide in terms of high-quality voice that goes beyond typical VoIP solutions due to our unique architecture, and the fact that we deal with over 20 SIP trunk providers to assure the best possible service.  Customers also like the fact that they are dealing with a highly focused service provider, and a different type of service provider at that, and not a product company.”

The visualization of performance for quick and detailed view of performance is emerging as an important tool for managers of enterprises of all sizes. It is particularly useful for franchise owners with many locations to keep an eye on. Combined with the ability to have reliable and quality communications, the ability to use sophisticated analytics to be not just reactive but proactive in enhancing in-store customer experiences, as the MAR Pizza implementation has already demonstrated, is a good way to know not just how one is doing, but points to ways to do better in a timely manner.   




Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

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