San Jose, Calif.-based SonicWALL makes network security and data protection equipment and software. Its clients range from SOHO users to enterprises, government agencies and educational institutions. The company frequently does product quality tests among its worldwide locations and provides customer troubleshooting. All of that means there is no room for error in its products which include firewall, remote access, email security, backup and recovery and management and reporting or the network on which it conducts internal and customer-facing business.
The Challenge. SonicWALL wanted to standardize and centralize the communications system used by its 300-person operations and engineering department. The project would include international, multisite deployments. Because of those factors, the platform had to be easy to configure and maintain, and save money on operations costs and phone bills. It also would need to support product quality testing and customer troubleshooting. Finally, the solution would have to integrate with SonicWALL’s existing Avaya system. We were looking for a solution that wouldnt tie us into using specific phones and that would allow us to test products,” said Aria Eslambolchizadeh, senior director of quality assurance and testing at SonicWALL. Ease of maintenance and configuration were crucial.”
The Solution. SonicWALL turned to its reseller and systems integrator, Team One Solutions, for help. Founded in 2002, Team One provides voice and data systems to business and government clients. The company works with manufacturers including Cisco Systems Inc., NEC Corp., Polycom and Zultys. After analyzing SonicWALL’s requirements, Team One chose Zultys‘ SIP-based phones and systems. From there, the VAR installed three Zultys MX-250 IP phone systems and two MX30 IP phone systems across SonicWALL’s four sites worldwide San Jose, Calif., Taiwan, Bangalore and Shanghai. All were connected via a T1. Team One further configured the platform to route internal and external calls among locations over the data network, which reduced the number of analog lines SonicWALL needed to maintain.
The Result. Almost immediately, SonicWALL saved $10,000 per month in operations costs. The financial improvements resulted from two factors. First, the Zultys system is SIP-based. This protocol access method allowed SonicWall’s remote sites to communicate at a much lower price. And because SonicWALL’s employees were able to collaborate more efficiently, they became more productive. The increased productivity let SonicWALL cut down on travel expenses.
The productivity itself resulted from various features within the Zultys setup. For example, employees can dial extensions, chat and see presence settings no matter where they are located. Jeff Bell, vice president of sales and marketing for Team One, said these were important capabilities to include. "You can see the status of each worker across the … network, meaning that if I want to talk to somebody in China, I can see whether or not theyre available right now, as well as when theyll be back," he said. "Communication becomes more efficient. Instead of leaving voice mails all the time, with presence I can see you there, or if I have a voice mail that I need you to take a look at, I can send that to you over another system."
Meanwhile, SonicWALL enjoys the ease of the Zultys system. We have good support whenever we need help,” said Eslambolchizadeh. We dont even have to hire a full-time employee to administer the system, because we can easily train our own people to do it." Still, Team One does handle the more technical aspects of SonicWALL’s maintenance, including software and equipment upgrades, engineering support and overseeing installations in hard-to-access countries such as China.
The Zultys platform gave SonicWALL the results it wanted. "Zultys was exactly the cost-effective, low-maintenance system we had hoped for,” Eslambolchizadeh said. Zultys was easy to deploy, it is easy to use and it works smoothly with the system we already had.”