CDW uses Network Management and Automation to streamline Unified Communications installation and management.
CDW, founded in 1984, is a leading provider of technology solutions for business, government, education, and healthcare. CDW is also a Master Unified Communications and Gold Certified Partner and Top 5 Cisco reseller. With a broad customer base of 250,000 small, medium, and large organizations, CDW is constantly looking to offer powerful and cost-effective solutions to meet rapidly evolving business needs.
Cisco® Collaboration solutions are increasingly popular with CDW’s customers. In the past, integrating various communication networks required managing multiple collaboration technologies, such as telephony, videoconferencing, and messaging, each with its own management interface and workflow. This situation meant that significant training and experience on each management system were required for CDW field engineers deploying and maintaining these solutions as well as for those customers who wanted to deploy or maintain the systems themselves.
In 2012, Cisco released Cisco Prime™ Collaboration 9.0, which is designed to simplify and unify the deployment, management, and troubleshooting of Cisco voice and video collaboration networks. Prior to the launch, Cisco invited CDW to participate in an early field trial.
Solution and Results
CDW deployed Cisco Prime Collaboration in a dedicated, comprehensive Unified Communications environment comprising 250 users across the country. The company is also training field engineers to conduct customer deployments of the solution’s two modules, Provisioning and Assurance.
Provisioning accelerates UC site deployments and decreases the time required for end user moves, adds, changes, and deletions (MACDs). For CDW, this time-saving lowers customer costs by reducing the burden on engineers. Administrators can delegate specific MACD tasks to nontechnical staff and allow end users to set individual preferences. These capabilities help enable CDW customers to manage their own systems without relying on CDW or hiring expensive internal resources. Comprehensive tracking and auditing of system change eliminates the need to manually review log files.
Assurance features a dashboard that provides CDW with a comprehensive summary view with drill-down capabilities of the company’s Cisco TelePresence® video endpoints. The dashboard significantly reduces troubleshooting time by eliminating the need to examine live files. Alarm correlation centralizes alerts for CDW’s diverse assets and supports notification routing to provide alerts only to the appropriate contacts.
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