How To Spot An Obsolete Communications Strategy - InformationWeek

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IoT
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IT Leadership // IT Strategy
Commentary
9/3/2014
11:45 AM
Marty Parker
Marty Parker
Commentary
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How To Spot An Obsolete Communications Strategy

Consider these topologies and approaches to lower costs, improve productivity, and drive new business.

gateways from vendors such as AudioCodes, Cisco, Oracle (Acme Packet), and Sonus route traffic inside and outside the enterprise, based on directories and other defined rules. These gateways include the session border controllers needed to secure the signaling and media streams across both telco trunks and Ethernet backbone services, and they can manage traffic between a mix of conventional PBXs or IP-PBXs and UC systems.

Another key is the proliferation of computers, tablets, and smartphones. When equipped with standards-based or proprietary communications clients, they're all IP-based replacements for the desk telephone. Even where a user prefers to use a telephone handset, the telephone can be a simpler and cheaper model, because the more advanced UC applications will be accessible on the user's computing device.

A third key is the modular, virtualized software design of most UC systems and services, which lets companies deploy them easily in the cloud or on the premises. Since most vendors sell their software on a per-user license or subscription basis, there's usually no software cost difference and minimal hardware cost difference between the modes of deployment for the new communications topologies.

You can read more about the new network topologies in our white paper, "Transformation of Enterprise Communications Topologies." Shown below are the before (No. 1) and after (No. 6) illustrations from that paper, indicating the topology evolution from conventional TDM trunks to Ethernet-based IP backbone services.

For a typical 2,000-line enterprise configuration, the "before" topology (Figure 1) has a communications bandwidth and trunk cost of $324,000 per year. The "after" topology (Figure 6) has a communication bandwidth and trunk cost of $92,160 per year. That's a 70%-plus cost reduction, not even factoring in all the other UC-based benefits. It makes a compelling case for a topology change.

Every enterprise is different, but any major network topology change along these lines will make your communications more robust, better suited to user and business requirements, more flexible for the future, and less costly.

Next in the series: How to organize your IT team to get the greatest benefit from UC systems.

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Marty Parker, Principal and co-founder of UniComm Consulting, has more than three decades of experience with computing and communications technologies. He has been a leader in strategic planning and product line management for IBM, AT&T, Lucent, and Avaya. Now, as ... View Full Bio
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Jeff Jerome
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Jeff Jerome,
User Rank: Ninja
9/10/2014 | 11:08:22 AM
Re: Savings and Increased Communication Plus Information
Brian - Your comment "now real-time information is becoming increasingly important" is so true it is amazing what information is available and at our ifinger tips.  Once you can filter through the ads you can find information on anything quickly and with amazing accuracey.  This internet of things is truely amazing.
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
9/9/2014 | 11:04:39 PM
Re: Savings and Increased Communication
That is a good point, I feel, as generation Y begins to gain experience in the workplace, this generation is going to employ modes of communication that they are familiar with and that offer a high level of efficiency. Text is good because an employee can go over information and review it again in-order to extract greater value.

Another area that I feel is changing is the mode by which employees are gaining information and knowledge. Books used to be the primary source of information, but now real-time information is becoming increasingly important.
Jeff Jerome
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Jeff Jerome,
User Rank: Ninja
9/8/2014 | 11:02:30 PM
Re: Savings and Increased Communication
One thing that I see in the SF Bay Area is that many companies don't eve have a phone system.  They rely on cell phones and more accurately texting.  It is a new world and a new day there are certainly needs for phone systems in large corporations, health care space and companies that require call centers but fewer and fewer phone systems are being sold and more and more are hosted.  Unified Communications as it is is really cloud based and work flow based, in my humble opinion
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
9/4/2014 | 2:21:01 AM
Savings and Increased Communication
A consumer can switch some of their communication needs from the public network to an IP network, for instance, cellular minutes consumed can be lowered by using Skype. A small change can convert a consumer's bill from $162 to $46. It would also allow the user to switch to video, if audio is falling short in providing the desired level of communication, increasing the quality of communication. Multiply these savings with a large user-base in an enterprise setting, and the savings gained can make a business competitive in the market place. 
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