Unified comms saves Cooma-Monaro Shire money

Friday, 17 July, 2009

A unified communications (UC) solution has garnered for the Cooma-Monaro Shire Council savings to the taxpayer of $1600 per month in voice-link costs, a 50% reduction in power consumption, up to 60% less TCO than other systems, and an ROI, including maintenance costs, of less than four years.

Savings will add up to more than $20,000 annually on its telephony costs following the deployment of a ShoreTel UC system. Based on a thorough cost analysis conducted prior to installation, the system will save enough in costs and fees to pay back its original investment and maintenance within four years. The council plans a minimum 15-year life from the ShoreTel system, which has been rolled out to 85 employees at offices and satellite locations, including a depot, public library and visitor centre.

The council provides local government administration for more than 10,000 people living in and around Cooma, the capital of Australia’s Snowy Mountains. ShoreTel’s UC system united the council’s administrative and infrastructure operations into a single communications resource, improving collaboration among shire council staff across different locations and enabling staff to respond more quickly to constituents’ enquiries.

The ShoreTel UC system has given us the features we need to help our staff improve the way they work and optimise our existing network infrastructure,” said Scott Goudie, IT manager with the Cooma-Monaro Shire Council. “We now have a solution that integrates voice with desktop and mobile communications so staff can easily communicate no matter where they are, and we’re confident this system will continue to meet our communications needs for at least the next 15 years.”

Cooma-Monaro was also able to realise significant savings because of the system’s ability to easily integrate with the existing network running over a fibre-optic connection between its administration centre, depot, library and visitor centre. “The flexibility of the ShoreTel system means that we could use it on the existing data infrastructure to carry data and voice. As a result, the council is saving an average of $1600 per month on the voice link. This is a major saving for ratepayers.”

Additional savings are being realised by the council in the form of reduced power consumption due to the energy-efficient design of the ShoreGear voice switches, and a low total cost of ownership (TCO) due to ShoreTel’s ease of management and administration. Goudie estimates that the ease of making moves, adds and changes, modular scalability and ongoing maintenance lowers the system’s TCO by up to 60%, compared with other vendors’ systems.

Nu Teck Communications and its Cooma-based strategic partner RJS Communications provided the technical support and resourcing for the ShoreTel deployment.

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