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Eric Krapf
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Eric Krapf | October 26, 2012 |

 
   

Self-service Provisioning

Self-service Provisioning Unimax's Web-based tool aims for easier user self-service, less time spent by IT on phone reconfigurations.

Unimax's Web-based tool aims for easier user self-service, less time spent by IT on phone reconfigurations.

One of the reasons why the Cloud has received so much attention is because of its potential to free up IT staff to work on more strategic initiatives. But the TCO isn't always there for Cloud, as Irwin points out in another post today. But there are other ways of freeing up your administrative staff's time, getting them off mundane tasks and onto those higher-value efforts.

One example would be user self-provisioning for telephony capabilities. That happened to be the topic when I spoke recently with Phil Moen, CEO of Unimax, and his team. Unimax is making a significant bet on user self-provisioning, in the form of its new LineOne application, released earlier this year.

LineOne is a Web-based GUI that an IT/telecom department can make accessible to end users to use in self-administering their phone sets, for features like voice mail passwords, PINs, speed dials, etc. Because Unimax is a third-party provider, they can support multiple vendors' phones, starting with Cisco, Avaya and legacy Nortel sets (as shown below):

Desk phone sets aren't sexy these days, and administering them may be even less so. But vendors still report increasing sales of IP phones, and certainly for many job descriptions, a desk phone will continue to make sense for a long time. At the same time, though, if these devices start to decline in strategic importance, it might make sense to try and cut down on the amount of time your IT staff has to spend administering them.

Phil Moen says Unimax is so convinced that this is the way things are heading, that the company is putting LineOne front and center in its pitch, ahead even of their Second Nature back-end administration system. "We're clearly leading with this application," Phil said. "We've turned a corner to clearly leading with self-service applications."

LineOne lists for $4 per end station enabled, and Phil Moen said Unimax is using an ROI calculator to show customers the savings they can gain with self-service.



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