Federal regulations that govern the coal and natural gas industry state that in the event of a communications failure within a company, all operations must be shut down. This fact presented a real challenge for our client, a major American energy company. A workforce over 10,000 strong, working in dozens of locations nationwide, was connected by an old communications system headquartered in one facility. A critical failure would mandate a hard-stop across the entire company. To complicate matters, a cellular solution was not an option -- this company operates in many remote, rural areas that lack a viable wireless signal. We were engaged to design and implement a solution that would overcome the geographic and regulatory hurdles. The right communications design would accomplish this, and provide new tools that would improve collaboration between locations.
Our engineers designed a new, decentralized communications infrastructure with a private branch exchange (PBX) hosted at each site. The built-in redundancy created a network of independent sites that could continue operating if one was brought down. As a further safeguard, we also integrated the Avaya® platform with the company’s backup satellite communications, which helped insulate individual sites against system failure.
By integrating the latest Avaya Aura® application suite with Microsoft Lync®, we provided a simplified call routing strategy, expanded dial-plan capabilities, and enhanced mobility features. Now, the workforce could receive voice messages via email, leverage click-to-call and chat functionality, and monitor the system from any site. In addition, the stability and reliability of the new system has shown a dramatic increase in uptime (seamless operations with no offline time needed) compared to the company’s previous system.
The company was not looking for a quick fix, but a long-term solution that would provide maximum business continuity through a resilient system and an empowered workforce. We continue to work with this client on additional operational efficiency initiatives.