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Choose Mitel for IP telephony rollout
Written by Jo Best, Contributor

Choose Mitel for IP telephony rollout

The National Childminding Association (NCMA) has switched to Mitel for its VoIP.

The NCMA is planning to roll out IP telephony to all of its 500 staff, spread over 30 locations in the coming years. The first phase, a deployment to the Bromley HQ, has just been completed, covering 100 users.

The Association said the decision to switch to IP was prompted by both cost and functionality.

NCMA IT manager, Paul Budgeon, told silicon.com the change was initially inspired by an upcoming office move for its headquarters. After assessing the cost of moving the existing analogue phones system to the new location, the NCMA decided installing a new system would be cheaper than extending the life of the old one - and would use less space.

He said: "We've gone from having one wall of telephony to two units the size of CD players." The new system has also brought new functionality to the NCMA's phone system, including the use of wireless DECT phones, to allow staff to pick up calls to their desk phone when not at their desk, and remote voicemail access.

After talking to three suppliers, the NCMA chose Mitel via reseller Telinet, which has now taken over the running of the Association's phone lines.

In the future, the NCMA is considering adding an MPLS (multi-protocol label switching) system, which makes traffic faster and easier to manage. Budgeon said: "Then we can get the quality assurance and start to bolt the network together, so we'd get inter-site communications free."

The NCMA is currently examining the numbers on such a move and if they add up, the switchover will take place "sooner rather than later", according to Budgeon.

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