The case study covers the Lakeville School District in Minnesota, and their transition to VOIP. The Lakeville School District comprised of 10,000 students and 1,500 staff members, as well as 2,000 phones in 18 different buildings (Hickey, 2006). With only one summer to complete the work, the project was a massive undertaking. The networking infrastructure of the buildings needed to be upgraded from legacy to fiber for most of the building as well as T1 lines in the rest (Hickey, 2006). This had to be completed before VoIP could be installed.
Patrick Rateliff was quoted saying, “We wanted to consolidate everything into one phone system. (Hickey, 2006)” The switch to VoIP allowed the district to consolidate everything to one system, saving the district money and adding some much needed features. Rateliff said that the district was seeing “significant savings” after the leap to VoIP (Hickey, ...view middle of the document...
Enhanced 911 features was also added, which improved the safety of the staff and students. On the old system, a 911 call would send emergency crews to a specific building. With the new system, crews dispatched to the emergency would know not only the building but the room number as well (Hickey, 2006). VoIP has many other benefits as well.
VoIP allows several phone calls to occupy the same space typically used for one phone call on a traditional phone network. Allowing 3 or 4 simultaneous calls on one medium allows for cost saving measures, less cable and less things to go wrong with wiring. Portability is also a great benefit to VoIP. The VoIP system is available anywhere there is a broadband connection; you can receive and make calls with your number (Writing, 2014). This is a great feature of VoIP, a manager could make and receive calls from his or her computer, which is a lot cheaper than paying international roaming or hotel phone charges. VoIP not only does voice calls, but also allows videoconferencing. This allows employees and clients to attend a virtual meeting to discuss ideas and progress on specific projects.
Looking back at Lakeville School District, Patrick Rateliff “was afraid of echoes, dropped calls, and latency,” when switching to a VoIP system (Hickey, 2006). While this transition was stressful and a little pricey, the outcome of upgrading the system far outweighed the initial price. VoIP not only added many important features, which improved both safety and efficiency at the district, but also saved the district money. VoIP greatly helped the Lakeville School District, and with the benefits and low operating cost, businesses both large and small can greatly benefit from VoIP.
Hickey, A. R. (2006, February 06). School district cuts cost, gains features after graduating to VoIP. Retrieved from http://searchunifiedcommunications.techtarget.com/news/1164429/School-district-cuts-cost-gains-features-after-graduating-to-VoIP
Writing, A. (2014). The benifits of VoIP for business. Retrieved from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/benefits-voip-business-163.html