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Night Nannies case study: Dream Weavers

Stuart Ridley
Business and Technology Journalist

Stuart Ridley is the Smarter Business™ Print Editor and has covered trends in small business, tech and marketing for two decades

Stuart Ridley
Business and Technology Journalist

Stuart Ridley is the Smarter Business™ Print Editor and has covered trends in small business, tech and marketing for two decades

Looking after babies is one of the most important jobs there is. When an overnight carer was sought, Night Nannies was born.

Dream Weaver Annemarie Sansom has formal qualifications in childcare and a 20-year career, but it wasn’t until she had her own baby that she identified a niche need that led to her establishing Night Nannies.

It was only when her firstborn was an unsettled sleeper that Annemarie realised the difference between traditional nine-to-five childcare and being a parent. An overnight nanny service is a rare business model.

Annemarie Sansom holding a baby in her office

Briefing: Night Nannies 

  1. Night Nannies is a NSW Central Coast childcare service that specialises in infant care, particularly for parents who have littlies that have trouble sleeping. Their motto is: “You deserve a good night’s sleep!”
  2. It started with one client in 2005 and has grown to a national service with more than 2000 clients.
  3. Co-founder and director Annemarie Sansom tells how Telstra’s DOT (Digital Office Technology)™ helped the company get new business and retain clients.
Once you are on the other side of actually parenting children, and not being able to hand them back at the end of the day, then having to deal with sleep deprivation and needing to get up and go to work all day − now that’s a different story.

- Annemarie Sansom, Dream Weavers

The game changing moment

To conduct her own market research, Annemarie sat down with some like-minded friends and colleagues, and realised there was little out there for parents struggling with their children’s sleeping patterns aside from a few inaccessible hospitals and sleep schools.

A chance mention in the national press led to Annemarie appearing on a popular morning TV show − this exposure was a game changer for the company. This exposure for the company, particularly their website, was fantastic, but could the site and the phones keep up? Night Nannies was heavily dependent on its VoIP call management system for cultivating and retaining clients. Annemarie came to the conclusion that Night Nannies needed a full enterprise system and thought her only option was to go with a low-cost IP telephony provider.

Annemarie says it didn’t make the grade. “With the old service, people couldn’t hear us because it sounded so robotic we had to say ‘oh look, I’ll call you back from a different phone,’” Annemarie recalls.

Enterprise systems that could help existed, but were way out of her price range. “We’re a small business and I wanted to have the best of both worlds. When I contacted Telstra they told me they have a package specifically geared toward small business; and that’s where it’s been fantastic.”

Technology cleared the way

The improvement in customer communication was equally, if not more, important than that of voice quality. DOT’s call management features, including its Virtual Receptionist (a handy optional extra) and simultaneous ring helped Night Nannies be accessible to key clients or new business. 

DOT’s sequential ring feature allows calls to be redirected from unattended phones or will ensure calls to the 1300 number will reach an out-of-hours number. “We absolutely are picking up new customers. The biggest problem was missing calls and not being able to return them,” explains Annemarie.

DOT’s Voice2Email allows Annemarie to pick-up voice messages as audio attachments in her email, so that even when she can’t answer a call the company no longer misses out on leads.

“We can see the order of the calls − the way our systems are set up: ‘I’ve dealt with that email and here comes the voicemail. I’ll return the voicemail now and listen to it’. So we’re actually getting to people within a good time-frame,” Annemarie explains.

One of its biggest costs is communications. “That’s where our biggest expenditure is − on the phone and internet − and in relation to running the business, that’s where we need to make sure that we’re managing our costs and keeping it under control.”

“DOT provides a high quality of service, which has helped me to save money. We are new to DOT, but over the last four months we are saving [on call costs] − which is great for a small business,” says Annemarie.

Insights from Telstra’s Director of DOT strategy

Andrew Stormont says businesses in the babysitting and personal sector predominately serve customers that are cash rich, but time poor. It’s also a ‘high-touch’ industry, where customers expect to be able to reach someone when needed. 

In other words, businesses need to be available to their clients. Telstra’s DOT packages can help business manage this challenge with the added convenience of a single bill. For instance DOT’s simultaneous ring feature, which diverts calls to multiple phones, can help capture more calls. 

Similarly DOT’s Voice2Email can direct voicemail to any email address letting staff pick them up on the go or distribute them to designated staff.

See if DOT is right

Telstra DOT (Digital Office Technology)™ bundle offers some great business solutions. here.

Find Out MoreSee if DOT is right

DOT is only available in areas where ADSL2+ of sufficient quality is available or on the National Broadband Network.

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