Multi-Vendor IP Telephony Management: Challenges and Solutions
By Prognosis
Published May 2007, Posted May 2007




An increasing number of enterprises are faced with the challenge of supporting and maintaining IP telephony systems from multiple IP-PBX vendors, such as Cisco, Avaya and Nortel. These companies have a variety of reasons for their mixed vendor environment - some by accident and some by design.


For large enterprises, the multiplicity of tools and teams required to maintain, monitor and manage the multi-vendor IP telephony environment creates the biggest challenge. Ultimately, it comes down to efficiency and economics.


With separate management tools provided by each different IP-PBX vendor, it’s impossible to gain an efficient, unified view across their disparate IP telephony platforms. From an economical perspective, it is far more expensive to procure, maintain and to train operations staff on multiple management tools than for a single management solution that supports different IP telephony systems.


Few third-party vendors have developed management tools and solutions to monitor, alert and diagnose these multi-vendor enterprise IP telephony environments—and only a small number of these successfully meet other critical criteria such as scalability, interoperability and broad support for differing APIs that enterprises need to consider alongside the management of the entire IP telephony ecosystem.


This paper examines the increasing occurrence of multi-vendor IP telephony environments and the present day challenges of using multiple tools to manage them. It offers a strategy for evaluating IP telephony management options and concludes with the over-arching benefits of a single management tool for multi-vendor IP-PBX environments.



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