Case Study: Appia Brings IP Justice to Indianapolis-based Law Firm

Krieg DeVault, a major law firm headquartered in Indianapolis now has disaster recovery for its voice services, thanks to the managed IP communications solution provided by Appia Communications.

The Client

Kreig DeVault is a law firm with 230 employees. The firm is headquartered in Indianapolis, and has additional offices in Indiana and Chicago. Krieg DeVault is one of the first law firms in the Indianapolis area to realize the advantages of IP communications.

The Challenge

Krieg DeVaults voice communications used an aging PBX system, which was connected to the firms three remote offices. The firm was planning to add an office in Noblesville, Ind., and would have had to add additional phone cabinets – a solution that was hardware-intensive and costly.

The phone system we were using was coming to end of life, said George Smith, Krieg DeVaults IT director. In order for us to expand it, we would have had to spend significant money on an outdated system.

In April of 2006, the high rise we were in was hit by straight-line winds and we had to vacate our building for 12 weeks, continued Smith. We have a remote office in our area and we went to that office, but the PBX system could not handle the 120 additional extensions we needed. In doing that, the biggest challenge we faced during that situation was to give all of our staff access to a telephone.

Understandably, disaster recovery was an important consideration when Kreig DeVault explored options for its Noblesville office location. The firm was also looking for features its PBX system did not offer, such as unified messaging, call history and extension mobility.

Scalability was also a driving force, said Smith. The firm wanted a solution that would integrate with the existing PBX system, while enabling them to expand the system later to include their remote offices. They did not to spend money at existing sites, but wanted a platform to build on. They felt an IP solution was looking into the future. We opted to install the Appia solution in the new [Noblesville] office to test it out and to see how it works. A hosted solution made sense because it saved us on the upfront cost.

The Solution

An Appia hosted voice solution was installed at the Noblesville office. An integrated access device was installed at the headquarters PBX system, which allowed it to interface with the new IP voice equipment.

Kreig DeVault also added a second T1 for redundancy, If we were to lose one of the connections to the office, we can simply switch the voice and data to the other connection, said Smith. This is part of the flexibility we did not have with our previous system.

The Results

As we gradually added more users to the IP voice system, we realized the benefits of that system. Extension mobility and caller ID reduced long-distance costs. The attorneys are using voice mail-to-e-mail, which has enabled them to respond to client calls faster.

Smith continued, Since the management has lived through a disaster situation, they recognized the importance of disaster recovery. My firm has lived through this and they know that it can happen to them, because it has happened to them. Disaster recovery is very significant; we see that as value for the future.

The Future

Krieg DeVault has been pleased with Appias service and plans to migrate its entire voice system to Appias hosted solution in 2008.

Appia Communications

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