Drivers for change
The council is located in the provincial capital of Hasselt and has its seats in the Provincial House. Limburg Provincial Council had various disparate legacy phone systems which were becoming time-consuming to manage and were no longer supported. Limburg Provincial Council needed to offer a more reliable, flexible customer and user experience. The Mitel technology offered agile user management, via a subscription-based, private cloud environment, included managed support. The unified communications capabilities would also relieve the internal IT services of the burden of managing the 1,200+ internal users.
The council chose BKM-Orange, a local trusted IT partner, to deploy the new technology. BKM-Orange worked closely with Mitel to complete the implementation.
The solution was rolled out by March 2020, after an in-depth proof of concept, which began in September 2019. Limburg Provincial Council purchased 574 MiCollab soft phone licenses but they service over 1,200 users around the province, most of whom have been working from home since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Due to Covid restrictions, staff couldn’t be trained face-to-face on the new phone system, but BKM-Orange provided a training manual to help familiarise them with the Mitel technology.
“The introduction of unified communications connectivity and softphones has given staff
more mobility and flexibility for remote working. The ‘one number’ concept is great for users who previously only had desk phones and mobiles.”
Mitel’s agility and flexibility
Limburg Provincial Council now benefits from Mitel’s resilient, secure, agile and feature-rich enterprise cloud communications platform, as well as ease of use with integration from Active Directory.
The MiVoice Business cloud solution ensures that council employees can switch between office-based and remote environments without disruption to communication channels. It offers seamless integration of voice, email, presence, unified messaging, mobility and conferencing applications.
Benoit Thijs, ICT Operations Coordinator at Limburg Provincial Council, said, “We undertook a comprehensive review of the council’s telephony infrastructure, deploying Mitel technology to provide remote working and business continuity via an agile, resilient cloud network. The introduction of unified communications connectivity and softphones has given staff more mobility and flexibility for remote working. The ‘one number’ concept is great for users who previously only had desk phones and mobiles.
The Mitel solution was deployed in March 2020 and users have seamlessly engaged with the citizens of Limburg remotely, even during the Covid pandemic. It has also eased issues with staffing and capacity as the cloud platform allows for easier and faster change management.”
An excellent user and customer experience
MiCollab gives users everything they need in one place; they no longer need to switch between multiple apps as they have a single application for voice, video, messaging, presence, audio conferencing, mobility and team collaboration.
With the single, unified service, employees spend less time trying to connect and more time engaged in productive communications with citizens. The Mitel technology has also enabled cost savings, with the subscription-based model, and the use of soft phones has eliminated the substantial cost of mobile billing.
Thijs continued, “The council is spread over several sites, but not all of them are connected yet. We are planning on doing so with Mitel’s MiVoice Business and MiCollab because the flexible, scalable technology allows us to easily connect additional sites to the existing WAN when necessary.”
- Telephony infrastructure was obsolete and no longer supported
- Disparate legacy telephony systems lacked integration and functionality
- Multiple providers were causing unnecessary complexity and overheads
Limited resilience for business continuity
- MiVoice Business subscription with a blend of 6920 and 6930 handsets
- MiCollab offers a single application for voice, video, messaging, presence, audio conferencing, mobility and team collaboration
- Mitel Performance Analytics (MPA) proactively monitors and manages the entire network, identifying voice and network quality concerns before outages occur.
- Active Directory integration centralises and streamlines the management of the communication-related data stored in the AD database.
- Unified communications connectivity for flexible, remote working
- A better customer and user experience through feature-rich communications like real-time collaboration and one number
- Ease of use, with limited training required
- Consolidation of technology reduces complexity and overhead costs
- Enhanced productivity and operational efficiency using a single, unified service
- Improved business processes with resilience and reliability, maximising uptime and scalability