CRN Article 27/10/2016

CRN Article 27/10/2016

Canberra college adopts Panasonic to replace ageing system

Canberra-based Panasonic partner Sedcom has boosted mobility and helped St Francis Xavier College cut costs with a Panasonic IP-PBX telephone system.

The school has 1170 students and 150 staff and has reduced its annual phone bill by 30 percent after replacing the ten-year-old Ericson digital system.

According to the college, there had been several telephone outages due to lightning storms. Carrier faults also added to the ageing system. The telephone cabling system was 40 years old and had been modified and patched repeatedly.

"Our old analogue telephone system was outdated and we desperately needed a new one that didn't break down every time we had a lightning storm," said Geoff Smith, network manager at St Francis Xavier College.

"Because it was out of warranty, I was spending hours identifying faults and then trying to repair them internally. This was not only hampering staff productivity, it also involved high repair and maintenance costs due to regular breakdowns."

The college assessed different solutions and settled on the on-premises Panasonic PBX solution. Panasonic UC partner Sedcom was responsible for installing 70 KX-NT551X-B 1-Line IP desk phones and 20 KX-NT553X-B 3-Line IP desk phones across the six buildings in the 10-hectare campus.

The desk phones are supported by the KX-NS1000 business communications server and activation keys for third-party SIP phones, with multiple units throughout different buildings used as a combined PBX system.

Smith said the choice of an on-premises system was to have flexibility in maintaining and updating when desired.

"Using a convenient web-based browser interface, we can now manage everything internally at the click of a button - instantly identifying any faults (such as a phone line coming out of the socket) and solving them quickly, which saves time and boosts productivity," he said.

Sedcom managing director Rene Sedlmaier said: "We knew an IP-based phone solution would meet the school's needs - allowing greater mobility, more control and flexibility, plus the option of scaling up in the future."

The new system has extended to the staff's personal devices. Through an app on their smartphones, teachers can set up their own PBX extensions.

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