PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
21st JUNE 2005
St Christopher’s, child care charity and housing association choose Text Message Server from Avanquest as a private and confidential method of communication.
St Christopher’s Fellowship, a child care charity and housing association, is using Text Message Server (TMS) from Avanquest to facilitate a private and confidential method of communication between staff and their service users. The solution, recently implemented by St Christopher’s followed a month long pilot of the software, which proved a huge success.
St Christopher’s is a registered charity providing care and accommodation for homeless and vulnerable children and young people in London. Text Message Server is a Corporate SMS solution which enables the sending and receiving of text messages to and from mobile phones on networked PCs. The system integrates seamlessly with email and offers an inbound SMS address for each user. SMS Messages are delivered in close to real-time and recipients then have the ability to reply directly back to the desktop, speeding up the communications process and giving organisations a truly competitive edge.
Bruce Davison, Performance Analyst at St Christopher’s needed to provide a private and confidential communication medium between the large number of staff and their service users - residents in St Christopher’s supported housing properties or recipients of ‘floating support’ and personal advisory services – which was easy to use, cost effective and would appeal to the younger clients they were regularly dealing with. Users now use SMS to report maintenance issues, request supervision or ask questions. St Christopher’s staff typically use text reminders for support sessions, deadline reminders (for housing benefit claims) and outstanding rental payments and to update tenants on maintenance work.
St Christopher’s use of TMS includes the MS Outlook functionality to send incoming texts to the email inbox of the staff member related to the service user and the directing of maintenance requests to a central maintenance administrator. They also broadcast messages to groups of individuals - a specific time saving function.
Bruce’s advice to any organisation evaluating an SMS solution would be “To run a pilot in which you should try to test a variety of uses of the service and get feedback from users who are sending and receiving.” Avanquest supplied and installed the evaluation software and gave unlimited telephone support throughout the extended trial period.
Usage increased steadily throughout the pilot, which was deemed a huge success and the system is now fully ‘up and running’, with 50 dedicated text numbers.
Avanquest UK is part of the Avanquest global organisation. Formed in June 2003, Avanquest is a network of companies offering a complete range of software publishing resources and a worldwide market to software developers from around the globe. Avanquest has a local presence on five continents and long-established relationships across all channels of distribution in markets covering nearly 90% of the world’s total software sales. For additional information, please visit www.avanquest.co.uk.
Alison Hall, Public Relations
Tel: 07899 986932
Tel: 01962 835053
About St Christopher’s Fellowship
Established in 1870, St Christopher’s Fellowship is a London based child-care charity and registered housing association providing care and accommodation for over 2,000 children, young people and vulnerable adults each year. Its services include children’s homes, hostels and supported housing for homeless young people and care-leavers as well as education and employment training services.
For further information about St Christopher’s, call John Berry on 0208 780 7800 email JohnBerry@St-Chris.co.uk
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