Institute Cuts Costs, Boosts Efficiency with Exchange Server Unified Messaging

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1 Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Customer Solution Case Study Institute Cuts Costs, Boosts Efficiency with Exchange Server Unified Messaging Overview Country or Region: United States Industry: Education Customer Profile Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) in Atlanta is the applied research arm of the Georgia Institute of Technology. Its 1,200 employees conduct U.S.$100 million in research annually for industry and government. Business Situation GTRI wanted a unified-messaging solution that was less expensive and offered more functionality than its existing solution. It also sought to lay the foundation for unified , voice mail, instant messaging, and conferencing. Solution GTRI began deployment of Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Unified Messaging across the organization. All users are expected to be online by the end of Benefits Saves more than $10,000 per year Enhances organizational efficiency Improves collaboration Provides foundation for future upgrades We ll save 25 percent in up-front costs by not having licensing fees, and yearly maintenance costs will go down $10,000 a year. Jeff Jenkins, Director of Information Systems, Georgia Tech Research Institute Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), the nonprofit applied research arm of Georgia Institute of Technology, was using a unified-messaging system that was expensive to license and maintain. The institute sought a better solution that would provide a foundation for integrated communication and collaboration processes. In May 2007, with help from Microsoft Gold Certified Partner Enabling Technologies, GTRI deployed Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 with Unified Messaging. The new solution will save GTRI in administrative and maintenance costs by consolidating e- mail and voic solutions and providing a single configuration point. It also helps employees improve efficiency through unifiedmessaging capabilities that they didn t have with their previous solution. In addition, GTRI says Exchange Server Unified Messaging provides a foundation for unified communications that will further enhance productivity.

2 It was a matter of Exchange Server Unified Messaging bringing us a cheaper licensing solution, along with additional functionality. It s not often you find something that costs you less and gives you more. Chris Slater, Manager of Systems Development, Georgia Tech Research Institute Situation Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), originally called the Engineering Experiment Station, was created in 1919 by the Georgia Legislature to provide high-quality engineering research. Today, the nonprofit organization is the applied research arm of Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia. Its 1,200 employees, working in seven labs and 10 field offices, perform more than U.S.$100 million in research and development annually for more than 200 customers in industry and government around the world. In 2004, GTRI deployed Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 throughout the organization to consolidate the six different messaging systems it previously had used. At that time, GTRI also implemented an additional thirdparty unified-messaging system that provided employees with voice mail in their inboxes. While the system offered GTRI stable performance, IT personnel weren t happy with its high cost: U.S.$100 per phone for licensing and $10,000 per year for maintenance. In addition, a new solution would require additional time and money to configure and integrate. GTRI wanted a new solution that would reduce costs and provide more-advanced features. It also sought to expand on unified messaging by deploying collaboration tools such as instant messaging and conferencing to offer a comprehensive unified communications system. Part of our goal when we started three years ago was to unify the organization with one e- mail system, says Jeff Jenkins, Director of Information Systems at GTRI. Another part of the goal was to create a collaboration environment so that everybody in the organization could work together more easily. We have seven labs scattered across two states, along with field sites across the country and in Ireland, and hundreds of sponsors we work with. So collaboration is important for us. Solution The research institute considered upgrading to the latest version of its third-party unifiedmessaging system. However, it decided the best option was to deploy unified messaging with Microsoft Exchange Server We stay on top of the latest technology, so we were planning on moving from Exchange Server 2003 to Exchange Server 2007, Jenkins says. Exchange Server 2007 Unified Messaging provided better integration and more-advanced features than other solutions, he says. And it didn t require any additional licensing costs because it was covered under Exchange Server licensing. It was a matter of Exchange Server Unified Messaging bringing us a cheaper licensing solution, along with additional functionality, explains Chris Slater, Manager of Systems Development at GTRI. It s not often you find something that costs you less and gives you more. To help with the implementation, GTRI chose Enabling Technologies, a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner with extensive experience in messaging and speech-enabled applications. Enabling Technologies helped GTRI assess, design, and deploy its Exchange Server 2007 solution. Establishing a New Infrastructure GTRI first provided Enabling Technologies with a two-day environmental overview that included sharing diagrams and documentation of its infrastructure. Once the overview was complete, hub transport and client access servers were deployed. The next step included implementing mailbox and unified-messaging services. In total, GTRI added eight HP ProLiant servers to its infrastructure: two firewalls running Microsoft Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server 2006, two mailbox servers, two hub

3 transport servers, and two unified-messaging servers. All run the Windows Server 2003 operating system. Because GTRI handles highly confidential information, protection of its infrastructure is a high priority. For that reason, GTRI added Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server to its existing third-party firewall to guard against spam and viruses. The deployment, excluding the planning stages, took 10 business days and two weekends, says Jenkins. Three people from GTRI and two from Enabling Technologies were dedicated to the project during the first 10 days, and two GTRI staff members will be dedicated to it going forward. The length of time it took from start to finish certainly surprised us, says Jenkins. The whole process of implementing Exchange Server 2007 was far smoother than we expected it to be. Issues they encountered were minor. Exchange Server 2007 support team members helped GTRI and Enabling Technologies work through challenges such as how to configure Exchange Server 2007 for shared namespaces. That hands-on support from Microsoft was appreciated. The account manager and the Exchange Server Unified Messaging specialist, Greg Katz, were very helpful in the deployment, says Jon Kremkau, Regional Sales Manager at Enabling Technologies. Deploying a Pilot Program In May 2007, GTRI began a pilot program involving 100 employees, including administrative assistants, faculty researchers, and administrators who work in laboratories throughout the organization. GTRI expects to have all users on Exchange Server 2007 by November Once GTRI completes a planned upgrade of its Private Branch Exchange (PBX) system, unified messaging will be deployed throughout the organization by the end of Most of the GTRI administrative team is using Microsoft Office Professional 2007, and plans are to deploy it to the remaining employees once licensing is completed. GTRI also expects to upgrade users smartphones from Windows Mobile version 5.0 software to Windows Mobile 6. For collaboration, GTRI has already implemented Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007, so that it s easier for employees to share and work together on documents. It plans to further integrate communications by deploying Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007, which provides presence and instant-messaging capabilities. The solution also includes an on-premise version of Microsoft Office Live Meeting for conferencing. And it incorporates softwarepowered voice over IP (VoIP), allowing users to make, receive, and manage phone calls anywhere in the world using Microsoft Office Communicator Benefits Exchange Server 2007 Unified Messaging is helping GTRI reduce expenses by eliminating maintenance and licensing fees. It also improves organizational efficiency and collaboration by sending voice mail and e- mail to users inboxes. In addition, it lays a foundation for a unified-communications solution that will continue to improve and streamline existing communication processes. Cost Savings of More Than $10,000 Yearly Because GTRI will no longer pay $100 per phone in licensing fees, the move to Exchange Server Unified Messaging will save GTRI money. We ll save 25 percent in upfront costs by not having licensing fees, and

4 We know that there is a huge amount of money we are saving in productivity that is immeasurable. Jeff Jenkins, Director of Information Systems, Georgia Tech Research Institute yearly maintenance costs will go down $10,000 a year, Jenkins says. Some cost -savings, however, are not so easily calculated, he adds. We know that there is a huge amount of money we are saving in productivity that is immeasurable, Jenkins says. Increased Efficiency and Collaboration Moving to Exchange Server Unified Messaging improves the efficiency of GTRI employees, who depend on timely communication and teamwork to complete their applied research tasks. They are happy with the enhancements Exchange Server has provided over the previous unified-messaging system. Getting missed calls in their inbox and being able to give audible commands to the phone to read their back to them are some of the most popular features, says Slater. The Microsoft Office Outlook Voice Access feature uses voice-recognition and text-to-speech technology to make it possible for employees using a phone to listen to and act on their inbox information. In addition, employees who are using the Calendar Concierge have been pleased with how easy the new feature helps them schedule meetings with busy colleagues and respond quickly to incoming meeting requests. Employees already had the ability to forward voice mail as an message, but Exchange Server Unified Messaging extends that capability. Somebody might get a phone call from a potential sponsor that went to the wrong area. Being able to forward it to the proper person through has been a major boost, Jenkins says. Exchange Server digs down deeper into contacts and gives you a bit more information about who it is coming from. help GTRI reduce employees dependence on desktop phones in favor of wireless devices that will give them more flexibility. With the infrastructure already in place, a wireless pilot project is scheduled to begin in a few months. From a vision perspective, we would like to see users with wireless capability, so they can go anywhere on campus and still access their inbox information, Jenkins explains. Exchange Server 2007 will also be the foundation for this wireless vision. Foundation for Unified Communications Exchange Server Unified Messaging is an important step for GTRI as it unifies its communication and collaboration tools. By integrating Exchange Server with Office SharePoint Server 2007, GTRI is helping users work together more easily. We can now publish results on a SharePoint site so others can do reviews on them, says Jenkins. The integration of Exchange Server Unified Messaging within Georgia Tech s IT infrastructure will fundamentally change how users communicate and give them a powerful competitive edge, adds Bill Vollerthum, President and CEO of Enabling Technologies. GTRI will be able to further enhance communications when it deploys Office Communications Server Users will be able to use presence to know when people are available and how best to contact them. They will also have the ability to quickly escalate an instant-message session to a computer-based phone call with a click of the mouse. That s going to be completely new functionality for the organization, Jenkins says. It s going to be a big benefit. Eventually, GTRI expects the move to Exchange Server Unified Messaging will also

5 For More Information For more information about Microsoft products and services, call the Microsoft Sales Information Center at (800) In Canada, call the Microsoft Canada Information Centre at (877) Customers who are deaf or hard-ofhearing can reach Microsoft text telephone (TTY/TDD) services at (800) in the United States or (905) in Canada. Outside the 50 United States and Canada, please contact your local Microsoft subsidiary. To access information using the World Wide Web, go to: Microsoft Server Product Portfolio For more information about the Microsoft server product portfolio, go to: For more information about Microsoft Exchange Server, go to: For more information about Enabling Technologies products and services, call (800) or visit the Web site at: For more information about Georgia Tech Research Institute, call (404) or visit the Web site at: This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. Document published July 2007 Software and Services Microsoft Server Product Portfolio Windows Server 2003 Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server Microsoft Internet Security and Acceleration Server 2006 Microsoft Office Microsoft Office Professional 2007 Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 Microsoft Office Communicator 2007 Microsoft Office Live Meeting Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 Windows Mobile 5.0 Technologies Microsoft Office Outlook Voice Access Hardware HP ProLiant BL380 G5 server computers HP ProLiant BLP20 G3 server computers Palm Treo smartphones Audiovox cell phones Partners Enabling Technologies

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