Fairplay was set up in 1992 by a group of parents who wanted accessible activities for their disabled children. The group set up a club their children could attend during school holidays.
The demand for the group was overwhelming and the group developed into an organisation with paid staff. Fairplay continues to grow, developing youth services, in addition to those for children, and expanding into areas throughout North Derbyshire.
The charity had been mis-sold a telecoms solution a number of years earlier which used a smartbox to adapt an old analogue phone system to work on SIP. The equipment had been sold on a never-ending lease which was costing them thousands of pounds a year. The existing supplier would not discuss the issues.
What the client said:
“Charities do not always have the expertise to understand telephone and broadband systems. Equinox provided the expertise we needed to understand that we had been given a contract for equipment that was totally not suitable for our charity’s needs and at inflated costs. Equinox then provided the support to enable the charity to leave the contract without any penalties. If it had not been for Equinox we would still be paying extravagant charges for equipment we didn’t need”
After being introduced through our Partner Programme, an initial review of their telecoms expenditure showed like-for-like savings of 50%, but let us give you a little more detail on this:
65% of call time were on UK landlines calls at a rate more than twice the national average.
Lease payments of over £2,200 per annum with over three and half years still to run.
Line rentals and connectivity charges were 23% higher than market prices
As is common in many similar cases, the existing supplier used a third party leasing company to finance the equipment. They would not entertain any cancellation without payment of the balance of costs. Because the equipment was key to the solution they were effectively locked into the supplier for the other services.
We initially helped the charity through the drafting of emails to the sales teams who eventually came to visit and then prepared a proposal that totally ignored the issues and offered a marginal reduction in costs. This was rejected on our advice by the charity with a demand for a termination to the lease without cost.
After several months of chasing without response we helped the charity draft a new letter to the legal counsel of the existing supplier. We set out all the background and demanded that the free to leave without penalty and that they would pay off the lease. Within a week they accepted all the demands.
Having achieved freedom to move, we negotiated a deal with a VoIP company that offered the charity free handsets as part of the deal and in recognition of the work the charity did. We project managed the transition, for free, and then undertook the setup of the new system and provided the training their team needed to get the best from the new solution.
The charity has avoided the ongoing lease payments which would have cost a further £7,000 (approx.). All staff now have a desk phone and the charity has a brand new, future proof phone solution.
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