Sligo Chamber of Commerce is celebrating its 100th year in operation this year and is launching a year-long range of events in celebration, which started with the unveiling of a commemorative plaque at Lyons Café on Quay Street where its first statutory meeting was held on 15th January 1923. The Chamber was established to represent the business community following the creation of the Irish Free State and the introduction of new customs tariffs, as well as the financial fallout of the Civil War. Today, it is the largest business membership organisation in the North West of Ireland, representing over 300 businesses and organisations.
The board of Sligo Chamber consists of volunteer representatives from various business sectors and is accredited by Chambers Ireland, the largest business network in Ireland with 60 member chambers representing 13,000 companies.
The organisation's primary focus is to support the long-term economic growth of Sligo City and County by collaborating with relevant government bodies and agencies. It aims to create a business-friendly climate and infrastructure in the region and provides various services to help businesses expand, thrive, and stay competitive.
Over the past 100 years, the Chamber has evolved with technology and software becoming increasingly important for its day-to-day operations. The COVID-19 pandemic was a turning point that forced the organisation to make significant changes to keep up with the changing business environment. One of the crucial changes was their transition to a business grade fibre to the premises broadband connection from Fastcom, in conjunction with SIRO. Communication remains a vital necessity for Sligo Chamber as it was 100 years ago, albeit it looks somewhat different these days.
Fastcom’s Partnership with Sligo Chamber of Commerce
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit Ireland, it forced Sligo Chamber of Commerce to adjust their business operations. With their physical doors closed, they had to rely on technology to maintain business operations and to stay connected with the outside world. Meetings were now held online through platforms like Zoom, MS Teams, and Webex, which posed new challenges in terms of accessibility and efficiency. The Chamber, like other businesses throughout the country, faced difficulties in meeting with significant national bodies in person.
To keep up with these changes, Sligo Chamber saw the need to upgrade their business connectivity. There was a greater need for higher upload speeds to support live recordings of online meetings and events, as well as to accommodate the move of networking and training events to an online platform and internal systems to the cloud.
Employees of the Chamber were forced to work remotely, leading to increased use of web applications, VPN access, and a Fastcom cloud hosted VOIP telephony solution. The previous connectivity solution was unable to support these new requirements, making it necessary for Sligo Chamber to make a crucial change in order to keep up with its changing business environment
Fastcom’s Asymmetrical Fibre Connectivity
Sligo Chamber of Commerce now has a reliable and efficient business connectivity solution thanks to Fastcom’s installation of a business grade, asymmetrical 100% fibre-to-the-premise (FTTP) broadband connection via SIRO.
Using the existing ESB infrastructure, this service provides uninterrupted business connectivity solely for the Chamber's use. The service is supported by a superior Service Level Agreement (SLA) and an enhanced delivery experience.
Their increased bandwidth (both upload and download), provided by the 100% fibre connection, means Sligo Chamber can now confidently host virtual meetings, webinars, and training events without any interruptions or technical difficulties. This has opened up new opportunities for the Chamber to engage with their members and the wider business community in a more effective and efficient manner. This improved connectivity has also allowed the organisation to expand their marketing strategy for social media and online communications, and supports their Fastcom based VOIP telephony solution, allowing them to communicate anywhere at any time.
Furthermore, this new connectivity solution has also provided the Chamber with the freedom to allow other agencies to operate from their building, when necessary, further enhancing their ability to serve the business community in Sligo City and County.
By investing in fast and reliable business connectivity, Sligo Chamber of Commerce is not only meeting the changing needs of its members and the business community but also positioning itself as a forward-thinking organisation that is committed to driving economic growth in the region.
Aidan Doyle – CEO, Sligo Chamber of Commerce
“In today's digital age, having a strong and dependable connectivity solution is essential for our business. With Fastcom's 100% fibre connection, Sligo Chamber is able to operate at peak efficiency, allowing our team to work remotely and access the resources we need and to enable us to serve our members in promoting business and investment in Sligo and the Northwest region.”
Lorraine Gribbons - Managing Director, Fastcom
"Fastcom has a long-term relationship with Sligo Chamber of Commerce and are delighted to be able to continue this partnership and support its continuous development with its upgraded fibre to the premises broadband service, in conjunction with SIRO. This service has seen the Chamber futureproof their business and has facilitated their internal operations to evolve, becoming more efficient and effective."