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Water Babies

Southern Communications help Water Babies improve customer services with integrated IT and telephone systems.

Water Babies is the world’s largest provider of swimming tuition for babies. The business has grown rapidly in the last 5 years from 14 to 51 franchises, providing tuition to over 32,000 babies a week.

Marketing and CRM support are part of the franchise service, so Water Babies depends on reliable telecoms to provide smooth, seamless integration of franchisee operations with the head office in Honiton.


Before asking Southern Communications to get involved, this integration was almost impossible to achieve. The head office telephone system was difficult to use and service support from the systems provider was poor. On top of that, new franchisees, who knew very little about telecom operations, were dealing with a variety of different suppliers offering varying levels of service and incompatible equipment.

This led to delays in operational start-up, missed calls and lost clients.

The Southern Communications Solution

Matters began to improve from the moment Southern Communications installed a new NEC switchboard at the Water Babies head office in Honiton. Southern Communications then designed a franchise-wide system that would achieve total integration between both Water Babies head office and its franchisees. Water Babies and the franchisees embraced the design enthusiastically.

This system married perfectly with the bespoke CRM system that Water Babies created for the entire franchise network, with the NEC system at its heart. Inbound calls trigger a pop-up with the parent’s record, for ease of recording, while out bound calls can be made from within the same record. This enables the franchisees to deal quickly with inquiries or run marketing campaigns, a significant added value for their business.

Today, the telecoms network is operated by Southern Communications on Water Babies’ behalf as a single enterprise, giving head office and franchisees confidence that service will be provided in a timely and efficient fashion. New franchises are brought on stream quickly and efficiently. Telephone equipment is pre-programmed with speed dials to head office departments and suppliers and call costs are kept low thanks to the aggregation of all systems under one account.

“We needed a system for our head office that was easy to use and that gave increased savings and ease of administration for the franchisees. Southern Communications had all the answers. Southern Communications have consistently provided a service that is second to none.”
Alex Hart – Water Babies

The Benefits

With Southern Communications supplying, installing and maintaining all sites, setting up a new franchise has been simplified dramatically. Every time a new installation or upgrade is required, all it takes is one call to Southern Communications, significantly reducing the amount of time it takes to get a franchise up and running.

Maintenance is no longer a headache. Water Babies now have one contact to deal with for any callouts or group-wide changes, such as updates to speed dials, system re-programming and upgrades. Remote access means requests for system changes are dealt with promptly and they have a team of engineers on the road capable of dealing with any support visits required.
Regular progress reports keep the company updated at all times. Using Southern Communications for telephone line installations and call routing across the company’s 100+ telephone lines means it also benefits from corporate discounts that it can pass onto its franchisees – keeping everyone’s costs down. Rate reviews are carried out regularly and routinely, which gives the company confidence they are receiving the best deal possible.

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