Legal Aid Ontario (LAO), an organization funded by the provincial and federal government, which provides high quality legal aid services to low-income residents of Ontario, was expanding its central office. Part of the move required a facelift of its central office communications system for 450 users. The choices were to continue with a Traditional System that may have incurred an expensive maintenance upgrade and contract or to move to an Open Standards System.
Bicom Systems was the first company to create Professional Open Standards Turnkey Telephony Systems. The company’s brazen goal is to “Save the World from Traditional PBXs” and it does this by reaching out around the globe to show large organizations and government offices ways to enjoy high quality communications in both their office and call center locations. Using the flexibility of its Open Standards System, the company promotes ‘best-fit’ solutions, within the cost of off-the-shelf.
"We [want to] make governments and large organizations aware that they have a choice over traditional closed PBX systems," says Bicom Systems spokesperson Stephen Wingfield. "They can set up-for far less money a fully functional very high quality phone system that will do exactly what they requested."
Stan Yazhemsky, Manager of IT Operations at LAO, an Open Source Enthusiast, had done some line coding of his own solutions with Open Source Telephony Platforms. However, for LAO, his purpose was to provide a warranted solution with feature rich reporting and functions that could be networked easily with the guarantee of support. Following extensive testing of different commercial and Open Source based solutions; PBXware at Bicom Systems was selected.
From Stan’s previous experience, he was confident that his team could ‘complete the implementation themselves’ rather than expending heavily on external costs getting to know the building over many weeks. Still time was tight and fore-planning with the Bicom Systems Team was of great assistance.
Tracy Chen, Senior Network Administrator, lead LAO’s implementation, and Senad Jordanovic provided the lead support role from Bicom Systems.
The system deployed at LAO included a high availability server mirroring solution, complete hosted services with a failsafe back-up, Polycom phones and a Sangoma A104D that interfaced with the T1 circuits and through IP opens the possibility to network their 200 plus offices throughout Ontario into a single dial-plan to eliminate internal long distance calling. In time, the system may pay for itself.
"Even before the benefits from networking are explored, the remote login to manage remote sites permits a dedicated core team to face and become familiar with a uniform management interface…removing additional training and system management burdens," adds Wingfield.
The ease of use is part of what has made Bicom Systems so tremendously popular with large organizations such as NASA, the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory and Australia's RHG Home Loans. Following a half day training session, agents at Legal Aid Ontario were using both the in-house and remote access features of the Bicom PBX system.
"In addition to the standard features of all new generation IPPBXs, Bicom System's Business Edition includes comprehensive enhanced services, telephony applications, system administration, end user applications with Unified Communications, customization, reliability and setup and configuration features in a truly scalable manner," says Wingfield.
For more information on Bicom Systems, visit www.bicomsystems.com.