IIS Group: Hosted PBX and a full spectrum of communications services.
Part 76 of Phone for Rent: Understanding Hosted PBX Services This veteran provider has a mission to deliver services in a way that ensures long-term customer relationships.
International Information Systems Group, LLC (IIS), headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was founded in 1998 and since that time has grown to become an established solutions provider to many organizations, ranging from small businesses to enterprise organizations.
IIS specializes in the design, implementation, and support of scalable systems, with a mission to deliver these solutions in a manner that ensures a long-term relationship with their customers.
The company markets a broad portfolio of communications and data networking products and services, including virtual infrastructure, VoIP, security, IT staffing, data center, networking, and hardware/software solutions from desktop to enterprise.
In addition to the Philadelphia headquarters, IIS maintains offices in New York, Georgia, and Florida, serving VoIP customers throughout the continental United States, with the additional ability to originate and provide services in Puerto Rico and Canada.
Four lines of businessIIS has developed four distinct lines of business.
The Hardware/Software Solutions area provides business and enterprise-level software, servers, storage systems, printers and peripherals, security systems, plus network design and implementation.
Data Center Solutions provides consulting and data center assessment services, along with tools for centrally managing and controlling the assets in customers data centers, including power and cooling, plus efficiency and space optimization. The IIS Group solution for this line of business is known as iCenter 2.0.
Business Solutions provides a virtual headquarters for a customers business, consolidating software access, new hardware purchases, redundancy, security and backup systems, plus end user moves, adds and changes. This IIS solution is named iOfficeHQ.
VoIP Solutions are targeted at three different markets: small business, enterprise solutions, plus VoSKY and Skype solutions.
The VoIP solutionsThe small business and enterprise VoIP services provide a hosted PBX solution, designed to lower network service cost while at the same time providing enhanced communications applications. VoSKY is a family of enterprise-grade VoIP gateways that enables a migration path from traditional switching to VoIP, by integrating an existing PBX or IP PBX to Skype, the worldwide VoIP community.
Within the VoIP area IIS offers a number of services: SIP Trunking, Web Meeting, Video Conferencing, IP Fax business solutions, and an IP-based, hosted voice solution.
SIP Trunking Service is offered to customers with existing PBX systems; it eliminates the need for ISDN Basic Rate Interface (BRI) or Primary Rate Interface (PRI) circuits. The SIP trunks support a number of PBX types and the G.711 and G.729A codecs, and provide unlimited inbound and outbound usage in both the United States and Canada. Discounted calling to other countries is also available.
Web Meeting service, which is available either separately or bundled with the Hosted PBX service enables businesses to host and attend collaborative meetings, sales presentations, demonstrations and Webinars. Enhanced features include: whiteboard and drawing tools, desktop recording and playback, e-mail and instant messaging, polling, document sharing, and video.
The IP Fax Service is designed to reduce domestic and international long distance charges, and permits transmission to any fax number in the world using any e-mail client or Web mail service. Toll free fax numbers are available, with faxes delivered to the users e-mail address as either a TIF or PDF file.
The Hosted PBX Service includes both standard and enhanced calling features, including: call duration display, call intercept, caller ID blocking, class of service call restrictions, selective call blocking and call forwarding lists, time of day routing, anonymous call rejection, automated attendant with announcements, call-back queuing for all trunks busy, call trace, plus billing and accounting codes.
Extended communications servicesThree additional functions seem particularly useful: unified messaging, which can retrieve messages from a desk phone remotely, with calls forwarded or transferred within the campus or between buildings, cities, states, or countries; remote office, which lets any phone be a business phone, whether the user is telecommuting from a home office, using a wireless phone, or pay phone, with the users personal Web portal (contacts, call logs, click-to-call, etc.) still applied; and configurable enhanced services, which goes beyond call forwarding and allows selective call treatment that can be as specific as a name or phone number.
IIS supports a wide variety of SIP telephones and analog terminal adapters (ATAs), including those from Aastra, Adtran, AudioCodes, Avaya, Cisco Systems, Grandstream, Linksys, Mediatrix, Panasonic, Polycom, and ZyXEL. In addition, IIS offers a softphone, which provides fully featured voice communications over an IP network. The software resides on the users PC or laptop, and is accessed via a high speed Internet connection. The softphone includes a number of useful features, including one click keys for placing and receiving calls, plus other keys for the most commonly-used features such as voicemail, redial, call transfer, and volume control. All softphone features can be managed through the IIS Web portal.
Pricing for all the IIS services is provided on a per-customer basis.
Further information on the IIS solutions can be found at www.iisgroupllc.com (formerly www.ring9.com). Our next tutorial will continue our review of various service providers hosted voice solutions.
Mark A. Miller, P.E. is President of DigiNet Corporation®, a Denver-based consulting engineering firm. He is the author of many books on networking technologies, including Voice over IP Technologies, and Internet Technologies Handbook, both published by John Wiley & Sons.