Council Improve Collaboration With IP Telephony

Kilkenny County Council in Ireland has introduced an Alcatel IP telephony solution to enable greater collaboration between its offices and borough council sites. The installation, which involved linking several sites of varying sizes with VoIP, was carried out by NextiraOne, a leading provider of enterprise communications solutions.

Kilkenny has deployed Alcatel solutions utilising an Alcatel OmniPCX Enterprise telephone system to connect 300 users across 21 council sites, nine of which are using IP phones in order to benefit from VoIP. All users have access to the same services – such as voicemail – irrespective of location, while the solution is managed centrally using the Alcatel OmniVista 4760 network management platform.

Previously, the county and borough councils – which work together on a significant number of activities – had been using numerous separate legacy phone systems that were cumbersome to operate and difficult to maintain. As the local authorities already had a future-proof data network, the decision was made to implement and install a new phone system that could connect multiple council sites, including the city and county halls, library HQ and fire station with VoIP.

“We found that a considerable number of calls took place between the county and borough councils, and in each case, we were paying for the privilege, despite the fact that there was an existing data link between the two,” said Kevin Hanley, head of IS for Kilkenny County Council. “It made sense to move to a VoIP solution, as this would eliminate costs, and by doing so, increase the interaction and collaboration between the two councils.”

“After evaluating solutions from several leading IP telephony vendors, we opted for the Alcatel offering based upon its flexibility, ease of management and overall value for money. We were also impressed by NextiraOne’s ability to customise the solution to incorporate all local authority sites, enabling each location to enjoy the benefits of IP telephony,” continued Hanley.

Having advised Kilkenny on the optimum solution for connecting the multiple sites, NextiraOne carried out the installation, and continues to provide support for the two councils.

“While most organisations recognise the potential benefits of VoIP, there is often a reluctance to overhaul existing networks and systems, especially when multiple sites are concerned. However by deploying VoIP across all sites, Kilkenny has implemented a solution that should provide a swift return on investment, improving worker interaction in the process,” said Ron Maher, general manager at NextiraOne Ireland.

“Alcatel and NextiraOne have both experienced considerable success providing IP telephony to local government organisations, thanks to their willingness to embrace new technologies and innovative solutions,” said Graeme Allan, vice president for Alcatel enterprise activities in Northern Europe. “Kilkenny will now be able to improve both internal efficiency, as well as its provision of services to the community as a whole.”

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