Customer Success Story: Georgia Military College

    When it comes to community colleges, Georgia Military College (GMC) earns a high rank. In fact in 2010, they were ranked #12 on Washington Monthly’s list of “Americas 50 Best Community Colleges.”
    In 2009, the college deployed Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 R2 (OCS) for approximately 450 employees. Georgia Military College was one of the first colleges in the US to operate in a 100% VoIP environment – completely eliminating PSTN lines. At the time of initial deployment, there were limited choices of endpoints that fully integrated with OCS, and the ones that were available were quite expensive. Because of cost considerations, GMC decided to deploy only a handful of high-end, UC-capable executive phones and use an entry-level SIP phone with basic calling features for the mass deployment. This decision came with tradeoffs, however. 
    “With the initial VoIP deployment, we realized cost savings from straightforward licensing and greatly simplified administration," commented Drago Totev, Associate Vice President, Telecommunications and Networking, Georgia Military College. "But only a handful of people were able to see productivity gains from using Unified Communications. We needed an affordable desk phone with an embedded client to take full advantage of the Unified Communications capabilities." With the upgrade to Microsoft Lync Server 2010, GMC found two such options – the Aastra 6721ip and 6725ip phones, both with the embedded Lync client.” 
    Both phones operate as true stand-alone IP phones; there is no need to be connected to your computer to enjoy the benefits of Lync. Both phones have dual Gigabit Ethernet ports, Power over Ethernet (PoE), easy access to essential features via navigation keys, message waiting Indicator and HD audio. The 6725i also has a large presence indicator displaying, at a glance, your own presence status being show to other Lync users. The Knowledge Worker 6725ip phone has the additional advantage of being able to be connected to a local desktop PC via a USB cable for advanced features. Microsoft calls this USB-connected mode "Better Together" because it leverages Lync’s powerful collaboration capabilities including access to data in the user’s Exchange mailbox, which is not stored on the phone. The Better Together mode enriches call control, allowing the user to click-to-call on the phone and gives them desktop control of calling features such as transfer, hold and conferencing.
    “The combination of Microsoft Lync and Aastra 6725ip and 6721ip phones enables us to take advantage of 100% of the UC capabilities. As we grow, we will continue to roll out the Aastra Lync phones to provide additional collaboration capabilities and improved employee productivity."- Drago Totev - Associate Vice President, Telecommunications and Networking
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