VoIP is trumps in infrastructure rebuild

With just eight weeks to build a new IT infrastructure, IT manager Brad Burden could choose whether to keep the NEC PABX or switch to new telephony with VoIP.

With standards compliance a weighty part of the mix combined with wanting a strong vendor partnership, Burden, of corporate services provider 4Logik, chose VoIP.

The project was part of a company restructure and was awarded to networking startup Zultys over the other contender, Cisco. “We were looking for a technology that met our needs, enabled more integration with desktops, and could be deployed quickly,” Burden said. “The [vendor] relationship was important as we don’t have a lot of dollar pull. We had a few demonstrations and Zultys could get an answer quickly for us.”

4Logik installed a Zultys MX250 VoIP exchange in its Wollongong, NSW, office which integrated with the company’s existing HP and Cisco IP network. So far, 20 IP handsets have been deployed to end users.

Other “key” criteria for the selection included: functionality, flexibility, a user-friendly interface, technical design, and open standards. “Zultys is SIP- and standards-based and, although it wasn’t a consideration, we are happy it runs Linux as it is transparent to end users,” Burden said. “We've had no downtime and are happy with the security it provides.”

Burden said Zultys delivered a “substantially more cost effective solution for our organisation” to the tune of more than 30 percent. “The ROI will be within a year compared with the legacy system,” Burden said. “There are cost savings with adds, changes, and removals which [would have] required a technician at $80 to $100 per change, so the maintenance costs of the MX250 is significantly less. I can set up all the user accounts.”

Burden said the MX250 took only one day to install, including the administration software, administrator training with another day to train end users.

“IP telephony is seamless, it does work and is real,” he said. “Productivity is increasing and so is user functionality as we can even integrate IP telephony with ERP.”

4Logik’s marketing manager Rhys Williams said the transition to VoIP wasn’t intimidating.

“In some respects the interface is almost fun,” Williams said. “It has taken off in the workforce and users are finding more features everyday by themselves.”

The MX250 also supports “presence” so staff can view the online directory to see whether others are online or on a conference call.

“Next we will be rolling out softphones so employees can access their office phone from a home ADSL connection or an Internet cafe,” Burden said. “We will also consider another exchange in the Sydney office for toll bypassing depending on the number of Sydney users in the future.”

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