ASD Turns 50: Part III of our Company’s Story
Aug 10, 2022
In 1972, ASD Founders Martin and Barbara Czachor sought to establish a small answering service business to support their growing family. Never could they have imagined that 50 years later, their company would become the leading answering service for funeral homes, working with more than 7,000 firms across the country. The story of ASD’s growth and evolution over the past five decades is one of passion, innovation, and leadership. From the beginning, our goal has been to improve the world by improving communication and to help those who are dedicated to helping others.
Below, we trace our company’s roots back to our founding and provide of a timeline of our company’s most pivotal moments. In this post, we outline our history from 2011-2014. These four momentous years were crucial in shaping the next stage of our company’s evolution, resulting in the development of ASD’s two most popular technology solutions for funeral homes.
Please Note: This blog is part of a series that will trace ASD’s 50-year history though our company’s most significant milestones:
Click here to read Part I which records our history from 1972-1999.
Click here to read Part II which records our history from 1999-2010.
In 2011, ASD establishes our blog and social media pages in an effort to create more relevant content for the funeral profession and to engage with mortuary professionals online. We are proud to now have the largest online following of any company in the deathcare space.
In late August 2011, a powerful hurricane is forecast to hit our local area. More than 40 ASD employees camp out at our office during Hurricane Irene to ensure that funeral professionals have protection for their calls through the storm.
ASD employees camped out in ASD’s basement conference room during Hurricane Irene.
ASD Mobile for iPhone is introduced on December 12, 2011. Within just a few months, the app receives thousands of downloads and hundreds of 5-star reviews from funeral professionals. ASD’s mobile app has completely revolutionized communications for funeral professionals nationwide by giving them the freedom to take their communications on the go. It has been updated numerous times over the past decade to provide more features and tools to help improve the lives of funeral professionals.
Since it was first introduced, ASD Mobile has been downloaded more than 20,000 times and has received over 100 5-star reviews – far exceeding any other mobile app created for the funeral profession.
To commemorate our 40th Anniversary year, ASD unveils a brand-new logo in 2012 featuring photos of our company’s longest tenured employees.
In 1990, ASD Vice President and Family-Member Owner, Kevin Czachor, created ASD’s first logo while still in college. The logo featured a waiter serving a telephone and was designed by Kevin with a little help from clipart. This served as our logo until 2012 when it was replaced with our current logo which features our own staff.
Hurricane Sandy strikes our local area but ASD stays ahead of the storm by providing accommodations so that more than 50 employees can shelter overnight in ASD’s building. This event prompts ASD to begin exploring remote solutions so that in the future, staff can work from home when necessary.
Before ASD switched to a fully remote office model, our company maintained an open-door policy during State of Emergency weather events. On several occasions, such as Hurricane Irene, Hurricane Sandy and Winter Storm Stella, we provided accommodations so our staff and their families could stay overnight ASD.
In November 2012, ASD releases the first version of ASD Mobile for Android.
More than 6,000 funeral professional regularly utilize the ASD Mobile for Android app.
During the 2012 Christmas season, ASD holds our very first “Ugly Christmas Sweater” contest. This annual tradition has continued for every year since.
A look back at some of our most epic “Ugly Christmas Sweater” Contest entries over the years.
In 2013, ASD received our official patents from the United States Patent Office for First Call Alert®, First Call Connect® and Solicitor Shield™. The patents protect the proprietary technology utilized by ASD’s in-house programming team in the development of these solutions.
In addition to the features listed above, ASD was also issued a patent for an internal telecommunication feature we developed that enhances the sound quality and volume of the calls we answer.
In 2014, ASD introduces a Web Chat tool to help funeral homes protect online communication. The solution includes Web Chat Alert™ and Web Chat Connect™ features that allow clients to receive a notification when ASD is handling an urgent web chat. This notification includes the option to connect into the chat in progress via the ASD Mobile app or an internet browser.
Early promotion for ASD’s Web Chat Solution.
During the 2014 NFDA Convention, ASD releases a new version of ASD Mobile that includes an updated interface and a new feature called MobileFH®. This powerful, unrivaled solution allows funeral homes to call any number from their cell phone and display the funeral home’s main business line as their outgoing Caller ID. Calls placed using MobileFH® are also recorded and stored within the app for future review.
Early promotion for ASD’s MobileFH® feature.
In addition to adding MobileFH®, this crucial app update also introduced a new “Patched” section that allows clients to hear recordings of calls AFTER they are directly patched through to the on-call person. Having access to Patched Call Recordings gives managers and owners a chance to use these call recordings as training tools for their staff.
Be sure to visit our blog throughout the year to read more chapters from our past.
Thank you for reading about ASD’s history and evolution through the years. Please visit our blog next month to read about 10 more pivotal moments from our company’s history.
About The Author
Jess Farren (Fowler)
Jess Farren (Fowler) is a Public Relations Specialist and Staff Writer who has been a part of the ASD team since 2003. Jess manages ASD's company blog and has been published in several funeral trade magazines. She has written articles on a variety of subjects including communication, business planning, technology, marketing and funeral trends. You can contact Jess directly at Jess@myASD.com