Case Study: Network Audit Paves the Way for an Enhanced Collaboration Solution

One of the Largest School Districts in Texas Needed a Better Solution Installed with Zero Service Disruptions

The Challenge

When you share network servers with the local police department, decisions to alter configurations or architectures take on a heightened level of scrutiny. One of Texas’ largest school districts could relate. Their Cisco Unified Communications Solution (UCS), which is a cluster of servers located at 2 of their facilities and the local police department, provides a way of distributing call processing and database replication between multiple sites. It’s the transparent sharing of resources and features while enabling scalability. If citizens can’t get ahold of the police, officers can’t be notified. So any changes couldn’t affect communications—not even for a second.

For years, the school district and the police department had enjoyed a Cisco Unified Communications Solution, but the hardware and software had reached end-of-life. An upgrade was needed, but it came with 2 new challenges: move 1 of its 3 servers supporting the UC solution to another data center and replace its call agent desktop software. Desktop software aside, changes to, or migrations of, data centers are large, complex endeavors. Expertise is required. Experience is needed. Netsync has the answers.

The SLED Technology Leader for More Than 15 years

For over 15 years, Netsync has grown to become of the leading IT solutions providers for school districts large and small. For this reason—and dozens of others—the school district turned to Netsync, which they’d relied on countless times over the years. Netsync has successfully deployed several IT solutions for them that helped ensure students and administrators are provided with the latest cutting-edge technologies that work to deliver the best education possible to the district’s 80,000 students.

For this reason—and dozens of others—the school district turned to Netsync, which they’d relied on countless times over the years.

Netsync conducted a detailed audit of the district’s current UC solution. They interviewed key stakeholders and employees whose work lives would be affected by any changes deployed.

Netsync upgraded the district’s Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) software to version 11.x from 8.x, The upgrade, which affects the entire cluster, builds on the many capabilities of previous versions of UCM by providing an even smoother experience for end users and system administrators, enhanced security with new next-generation encryption, support for efficient sharing of conferencing resources, and the removal of management complexity with automated, accelerated provisioning and simplified, real-time monitoring and troubleshooting.

The CUCM cluster contains a single publisher and 3 subscriber servers, all of which provide high availability and redundancy. Within the cluster are 3 subclusters, including:

  • a Cisco Unity Connection (CUC) high-availability (HA) cluster, which provides enhanced availability and redundancy,
  • a HA Cisco Emergency Responder (CER) cluster, which further enhances the CUCM’s emergency 9-1-1 functionality. It assures that CUCM will send emergency calls to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) for the caller’s location, and that the PSAP can identify the caller’s location and return the call, if necessary, and
  • a high-availability (HA) Cisco Unified Contact Center Express (UCCX) cluster for its contact center services. Providing simple deployment and management, UCCX is a secure and sophisticated contact center solution for up to 400 agents and IVR ports that’s easy to deploy and manage. 

Netsync configured and deployed, and provided training for, Finesse Desktop, which they installed to replace Cisco Agent Desktop. Finesse Desktop is a next-generation agent and supervisor platform that provides a collaborative experience for customer service organizations. Its user-centric design greatly enhances the overall experience for customer-care representatives.

As Always, the Solution was Delivered by the Best and Brightest in the Technology Industry

Netsync’s project management team oversaw the entire project, from the initial kick-off call until completion. They ensured the district’s solution was not only implemented and fully tested, but didn’t result in any disruption of service. As always, Netsync’s project management professionals utilized Project Management Institute (PMI) processes and methodologies to ensure the district’s enhanced unified communications solution was completed on time and on budget…and without any service interruption or degradation.

Now the school district and police department have a superior solution for communication and collaboration. The school district now provides enhanced levels of education and the police department operates more efficiently and effectively. Another win-win provided by the leader in providing innovative IT solutions to SLED customers.