Frictionless multimedia collaboration is extremely important to small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). After all, if a company is trying to be super competitive with a relatively small headcount, everyone in the organization needs to be as productive as possible. Employees need to work together to resolve customer issues, bring innovative ideas to market and avoid the mistakes that happen when people don’t share the right information in a timely manner.

Unfortunately, many SMBs haven’t yet implemented the kind of unified communications solutions essential for enabling frictionless collaboration via voice, email, instant messaging and video. Typically, this is because they are highly averse to undertaking major IT projects, replacing existing infrastructure that still has a useful life and implementing a solution today when requirements could change substantially tomorrow.

Avaya IP Office offers the perfect answer to those obstacles. The platform provides all the functionality SMBs need to collaborate, yet at the same time, doesn’t require them to take risks they don’t want to take or retire equipment they want to keep.

Among its many advantages, Avaya IP Office:

  • Works with analog, digital, or IP phones. The ability to upgrade communications without replacing phones appeals to SMBs. The use of digital phones can be especially important in situations where upgrading to CAT 5 or CAT 6 cabling (necessary for IP phones) is cost-prohibitive.
  • Fits today’s multidevice workstyles. With Avaya IP Office, users can easily and securely perform all of their everyday communications tasks — making and receiving phone calls, participating in conference calls, checking voicemail, exchanging email, using instant messaging, and more — from their office phone, desktop, notebook, smartphone, home PC and home phone. This flexibility enables users to get work done anywhere, at any time.
  • Scales to 2,500 users and 150 locations. Most SMBs won’t start with that many users on Day One. But companies can start their Avaya IP Office deployment with limited scope (in one department or one location, for example) and then expand as the business grows. 
  • Offers tiered pricing. IT decision-makers don’t want to stage their rollouts based on the number of users alone, but also in terms of functionality. That approach helps them spread out their costs over time and avoid overwhelming users with new capabilities. Avaya IP Office offers three functional tiers with corresponding pricing.
  • Easy to deploy and manage. Most businesses don’t have a big IT staff to run their telephony and collaboration environments. Avaya clearly understands this and has created a solution that’s easy to install and that provides an intuitive management console for handling day-to-day tasks. The platform can be deployed as either an appliance, a physical server or a virtual server, giving organizations the flexibility to choose the approach that best suits their existing IT resources.

Avaya IP Office includes many other compelling features. For instance, it works across all types of network connections, including MPLS-enabled wide area networks and virtual private networks. It integrates with other solutions, such as Microsoft Lync and Avaya Scopia. And it has a powerful contact center module that can support up to 400 agents with complete multichannel and database-driven screen pop capabilities.

But the bottom line for SMBs is that Avaya IP Office can deliver frictionless collaboration without placing excessive demands on limited resources or exposing companies to unacceptable business risks. For these reasons, any IT leader who wants to make his or her company more competitive, productive and agile should take a good look at what the platform has to offer.

What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments.

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