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Feature Article
February 2004

Network Engines Deploys Sonexis Conferencing Solution

Headquartered in Canton, MA, Network Engines, Inc., is a development, manufacturing, and distribution partner for storage and security software and equipment providers worldwide. The company works with its software partners to develop, manufacture, and distribute server appliances for mission-critical storage and security networking applications.

The Challenge
Conferencing is a daily activity at Network Engines, especially among the 40-plus person sales and marketing teams who are continually in contact with customers and prospects. Whether on the road or in their office, the teams face a constant need to bring together from six to eight colleagues, customers, or partners at a moment�s notice.

With its previous conferencing provider, Network Engines typically paid $1,200 a month. However, the service came up short. The provider offered only audio capabilities and did not allow meetings to occur on an ad hoc basis, thus hindering collaboration.

The Solution
Network Engines sought a solution to make it easier for employees to conduct conferences and to increase their ability to collaborate by adding Web conferencing capabilities -- all while controlling costs. The solution was Sonexis ConferenceManager, an in-house, integrated audio and Web conferencing system that is designed to be flexible, cost-effective, and easy to set-up and administer.

The Benefits
Implementing Sonexis ConferenceManager is expected to slash Network Engines� conferencing costs by 65 to 70 percent monthly. But, the benefits of the new system extend far past the cost savings. Teams at Network Engines are collaborating more (and more productively) than ever, as evidenced by the rise in conferencing usage. The firm�s top users -- its engineering, sales, and marketing teams -- perceive less of a need for travel as they utilize ConferenceManager�s integrated audio and Web conferencing capabilities to view, share, and discuss documents with customers, prospects, and even international clients. Conferencing is now routinely employed for weekly sales meetings, customer engagements, and business development efforts.

A key feature cited by Network Engines is the system�s tight integration with Microsoft Outlook. Staff members easily schedule calls directly from their Outlook calendars and set meeting reminders according to their individual preferences.
Network Engines� IT executives reported that Sonexis ConferenceManager was simple to install, easy to administer, and enhanced overall security. Because the system sits behind the company�s own firewall, confidential documents and proposals are kept safe and not exposed to potential unauthorized viewers. In addition, the IT team can closely monitor system usage to identify primary users and determine if more ports are needed to support the company�s growing conferencing needs.

Directly linking the Sonexis ConferenceManager into the company�s PBX system helps Network Engines maximize its infrastructure investment. The feature allows the firm to provision lines into the conferencing system when the capacity is needed. Otherwise, they�re left to handle traditional voice traffic -- thus ensuring that lines are never left idle.

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