The University of Washington has sought the services of unified communication to combine its data, voice and networks as well as to build a platform that supports diverse products.

The University of Washington finds the effective connection of data and people extremely paramount. The university serves more than 51,000 students as well as about 31,000 faculty members across 3 different academic campuses as well as 500 buildings scattered across Bothell, Wash, Tacoma, and Seattle.

About three years ago, the communication infrastructure in the University was out of date. It was not sufficient for supporting many of the systems and applications that are needed in today’s education environment such as BYOD, mobility and video conferencing. Roland Rivera, UW's director of network strategy and telecommunications noted that better integration of data services is extremely critical and it was apparent that there is need for getting unified communications infrastructure.

The unified communication system supports products from different vendors such as AVST, Microsoft Lync, Polycom and Cisco. With the use of a web-based management console, the IT tem can isolate different communities of use, oversee routing and dial plan management and also better manage licensing and security.

Rivera indicates that the unified communication solution has brought the school’s infrastructure to the digital age. In the long run, it is expected to trim IT costs as well as administrative overheads while providing greater flexibility and simplicity.

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