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Justin Bagatti
Justin Bagatti
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Unified Communications Plans: 6 Ways To Derail Disaster

Before you choose a UC product or platform, careful evaluation of existing attitudes, equipment, and systems could save your project -- and your sanity.
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Making a plan to implement unified communications (UC) in your organization requires some up-front preparation. First, you must examine how well your infrastructure can support UC and how business operations could be disrupted. As IT leaders, we must take into account all known factors and anticipate those unknowns that could pop up along the way once the project starts.

As part of the due diligence phase of your UC project, evaluating and documenting the following factors is essential. Maintaining a smooth highway today will help avoid a disaster down the road.

 

 

Justin Bagatti is 15-year veteran of IT systems for business, staying on the bleeding edge of solutions like unified communications, collaboration, and multichannel inbound/outbound call center platforms. Currently, he serves as Systems Consultant for TEAMSOS, where he ... View Full Bio

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MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
6/9/2014 | 1:55:56 PM
SIP trunking
Hi Justin -- Can you elaborate on the benefits you see with SIP trunking? Also, are there some common mistakes organizations make when deploying it?
JustinBagati
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JustinBagati,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/9/2014 | 3:13:16 PM
Re: SIP trunking
Hey Marcia,

 

Thanks for the question!


Benefits from SIP include the following:


Scale: You can scale up and down with SIP Trunking quickly. Need 20 additional call paths? If you have the bandwidth available, there isn't a delay to drop additional copper for traditional PRI service.

Flexibility: You can mix SIP solutions to meet business goals. Running a heavy outbound campaign? Use a Usaged based carrier for when you need the extra capacity, without impacting your inbound trunks.

Cost Savings: Use existing data connections to route voice calls and avoid copper line taxes. MPLS is a fantastic way to ensure data delivery on an existing network.

Advanced Features: DID anywhere, faxing, outbound call services, E911 and a vast array of carriers to select

Geo Diversity: Using SIP allows for easier failover if there is a single site failure or even device failure. Difficult to add redundancy to a PRI, easy in the SIP world.

SIP can add some complexity as it is an IP Service. Common mistakes I see are specifically around expectations or lack of experience with SIP and WAN technology by system administrators.

An overused internet connection with a 6 year old firewall is not conducive to great call quality. Also connections without any type of quality of service on their WAN connection will experience some sort of call quality issues due to internet traffic. Organizations that have high availably requirements will want to invest in a second, diverse internet connection.

Deploying a network monitoring solution and ACTIVLY monitoring your connections will help isolate issues when they arise and keep things working well.  Lastly, working with a provider that has experience in deploying SIP will help ease these concerns and make it a successful project.
MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
6/9/2014 | 6:49:33 PM
Re: SIP trunking
Good details, thanks Justin. For an organization new to UC, it seems like SIP would require a bit of a learning curve.
JustinBagati
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JustinBagati,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/9/2014 | 7:03:39 PM
Re: SIP trunking
It can be a minor learning curve, but the benefiits are worth it!
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
6/9/2014 | 8:45:14 PM
Re: SIP trunking
Resistance to change is a major factor that needs to be taken into consideration. Everyone agrees that voice is better than text, and video is better than voice. But often times, employees revert back to voice, over video. Sometimes, this is due to video shyness or the assumption that video is not needed in the current situation and is kept for the more important situations (that never arrive). A good workaround to this resistance is to involve employees participating during the testing phase, this allows for comfort levels to build and systems to be thoroughly tested.
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
6/9/2014 | 8:54:48 PM
Re: SIP trunking
@Marcia, good point and I hope that Unified Communication systems come with a high quality of documentation support and customer support, so that the learning curve is streamlined. If UC is being deployed in UC as a service environment and documentation support (communication) is lacking, then it won't be long before the business begins to search for a new provider.
aditshar1
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aditshar1,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/10/2014 | 4:20:16 AM
Social UC
Is UC just an indivisual application or we can make UC step together with Social Media, i have been listening around that we are towards symbiosis between UC and Social Networking but i guess this is still in progress..Any updates ..
MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
6/10/2014 | 12:35:16 PM
Re: SIP trunking
Having users involved in testing sounds like a great idea Brian, and the best way to gauge their comfort levels with various technologies and ensure they will buy into the system.
MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
6/10/2014 | 12:52:35 PM
Re: Social UC
Good question. It seems that Cisco and other vendors have been working towards UC integration with social media for some time, but that it's still a work very much in progress.
Brian.Dean
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Brian.Dean,
User Rank: Ninja
6/10/2014 | 1:29:34 PM
Re: Social UC
Marcia, Cisco is a good example of a company that knows the value that can be created by its client's team by communicates and interacts, and yes, it is still a work in progress.

Another example is that of Salesforce, its Chatter app enables a good level of collaboration. All of these tools are rendered useless, if the organization does not have a culture to collaborate, and the organization that put a heavy value on collaboration will use every technology that is available, even if it's outwards facing technology, for example, Skype or LinkedIn, etc. 
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