In the words of Acceris Communications (Booth 401) President Kelly D. Murumets, the recently re-branded organization is "working hard to create a magical culture." This is because Acceris wasn’t Acceris before last November. Acceris began as I-Link Corp. in early 2001. Later that year, I-Link took over WorldxChange Corp. Soon it was buying RSL COM USA Inc. and Transpoint Communications. By the end of 2003, the four companies had been integrated into and branded as Acceris. Executives say they are now ready to storm the telecommunications industry with the company’s niche customer focus and emphasis on internal performance.
After the four companies — which focused on VoIP, long-distance services, communications solutions and reselling voice and data, respectively — combined, officials also had to bring together the different cultures. They decided the best way to encourage and maintain a customer-focused company was to create a performance-based system for employees that emphasized openness, candor and communication, Murumets says.
For example, now, from top to bottom and bottom to top, every employee knows his or her contribution and how accomplishing goals creates a positive trickle-down effect. Murumets, who, in addition to other fields, has a degree in social work, exudes an obvious energy as she talks about the company’s unique accountability structure that she says fosters an interconnected team — from the receptionist to top execs.
That interconnectedness translates into Acceris’ customer focus and service, Murumets says. Acceris has found its niche in ethnic groups, enterprises and SMBs, and technology differentiation. She’s excited because, for one thing, Acceris employs a number of agents of ethnic origin who are able to reach customers from the same countries. Through Acceris, agents are able to offer users low long-distance and international rates. Those end users "hear their language, receive bills in their language," says Murumets. So far, Acceris’ largest ethnic markets are China and India.
The company also targets SMBs and enterprises with its domestic and international long-distance, local dialtone, managed data services such as frame relay, ATM, IP, VPN, DSL and hosting, and softswitch services. Acceris’ corporate infrastructure includes finance, HR, customer service, legal/regulatory, marketing, IT, research and development and operations.
Acceris employs 360 workers in San Diego, Pittsburgh and Somerset, N.J. Right now, the company sees patents and bundled products as its high value drivers.