VoIP Case Study #1 - Page 3

 By Linda Paulson
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They have also been able to extend city telephone services to city officials' remote or home offices with the new VoIP system.

The city did eliminate one of its telephone operators, but the cost-savings has been nothing less of phenomenal. They've not only gotten their telephone directory listing down to a single published number, they also saved "right off the bat," a quarter of a million dollars. Additionally, another quarter of a million was saved by bringing all the telephone maintenance in house as well as reducing the system from 17 various switches to one single switch. McWilliams ticks off other various savings.

The response has been positive thus far. So much so that information services was made its own independent city department. Typically in government agencies, technology resides under the umbrella of city or county finance departments.

McWilliams advises network administrators to disregard any existing misconceptions about VoIP they may have heard circulating. "With today's money crunch we need to look at all avenues to save money and give users the same or better services at a reduced cost. [VoIP] really drives it home. Granted, we're not having to worry about toll calls, but across state or across town, it'll work really well."

The services will be expanded. Videoconferencing was eliminated from the initial implementation. McWilliams hope that will be added in the next budget year. He is cryptic about other projects in the works, but says several ideas are being tossed around.

City-administered VoIP pay phones for all those Daytona tourists?

You never know. It could be quite possible.

What seems to be the most ideal scenario would be starting from scratch to build a combined voice and data network, which is exactly what the West Virginia University Foundation was able to do when they recently moved to new facilities. We'll examine their situation tomorrow.

Related Articles:
Talk is Cheap
VoDSL Delivery Strategies
Any Calls For Enterprise LAN Telephony?
Convergence Without the Next Generation

This article was originally published on Jan 17, 2002
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