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Global Commodities Company Saves on Travel Costs with Unified

By Annette Gardner,2014-06-27 10:28
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Global Commodities Company Saves on Travel Costs with Unified ...

     Global Commodities Company Saves on Travel

    Costs with Unified Communications

    “Because Office Communications Server 2007 lends Overview

    Country or Region: Australia itself to so many different scenarios, I can say with a Industry: ManufacturingMining

     high degree of confidence that it has a positive impact Customer Profile on the total costs.” Melbourne, Australia-based BHP Billiton is

    the world’s largest diversified resource Dr Ian Hoyle, Principal Architect Technology, Enterprise IT Strategy Group, BHP Billiton company with 39,000 employees in 25 countries. It has interests in a wide range BHP Billiton is the world’s largest diversified resources company. It of assets, including petroleum.

     has 39,000 employees working in 25 countries worldwide and Business Situation returned a profit of U.S.$13.7 billion (excluding exceptional items) Diverse solutions for telephony and

    conferencing among offices made it in fiscal year 2007. With global operations demanding frequent difficult for BHP Billiton to track costs and inter-office communications, the company found itself hindered by keep content secure while employees

    collaborated across the globe. a range of different systems and protocols, and poor call quality from its many remote offices. To consolidate its online meetings Solution

    BHP Billiton deployed Microsoftsolutions worldwide, the company turned to Microsoft? Office ? Office

    Communications Server 2007 to create a Communications Server 2007 to deliver an integrated unified-communications solution to support communications solution to improve collaboration and internally hosted Web conferencing.

     communication for its employees. With highly secure content Benefits sharing, software-based voice over IP capability, and integrated ? Improved operational costs presence management, the new environment creates a unified ? Increased productivity

    ? Reduced travel and conferencing costs communications solution that helps reduce long-distance call costs

    ? Higher quality and travel budgets, and removes company dependence on ? Rapid deployment hardware-based IP telephony solutions.

    Situation heads that would use their own service “We knew intuitively that BHP Billiton is headquartered in Melbourne, providers, making it even harder to measure voice-conferencing Australia, and is the world’s largest the costs and usage.” In addition, sensitive diversified resources company. It has leading information, in formats such as Microsoft? functionality combined positions in aluminum, energy and Office PowerPoint? presentation graphics with highly secure online metallurgical coal, copper, manganese, iron program files, was also routinely shared ore, uranium, nickel, silver, and titanium ores during these calls, giving rise to security content sharing would and metals. The company also has interests concerns. in oil, gas, liquefied natural gas, and strike a chord with diamonds. It has a U.S.$200 billion dollar “We knew intuitively that voice-conferencing people in our business.” market capitalization, and employs 39,000 functionality combined with highly secure employees in more than 100 operations in online content sharing would strike a chord Dr Ian Hoyle, Principal Architect Technology, 25 countries. with people in our business,” says Hoyle. Enterprise IT Strategy Group, BHP Billiton “What we needed was an on-premise One of the company’s ongoing challenges conferencing (audio, video, and Web) was finding a single, consistent solution to capability with file sharing that would be voice-conferencing needs for its globally flexible enough to cater to a myriad of distributed staff. “Because we’re such a large scenarios and needs across our global company working across so many countries, operations.” we constantly have online meetings and conferences with distributed groups of staff The solution BHP Billiton wanted had to offer and customers,” says Dr Ian Hoyle, Principal high-quality voice telephony, allow for highly ArchitectTechnology, Enterprise IT Strategy secure uploading of sensitive data, and had Group, BHP Billiton. to be deployable internally to allow usage tracking and the management of Employees were using a large and diverse consumption. So, in late 2005, the company range of conferencing solutions procured by investigated several options that would bring individual business units and companies it improved online meetings and voice within BHP Billiton. “We were not only using a communicationsbut at the same time would variety of third-party services, but also integrate with existing systems and be easy solutions from different local telcos in each to use. market in addition to using global players like Microsoft and WebEx,” notes Hoyle. “We

    knew we were making a lot of calls and

    meetings online, but we had no visibility of Solution the total cost.” Hoyle adds that many calls Acknowledging the variety of solutions were outside the control of the IT department available in the market, BHP Billiton chose and often made on an ad-hoc basis. Another Microsoft principally because of its ability to problem was the generally poor voice quality link into existing systems and applications. of local telecom operators in some of the “We’re very focused on Microsoft Office more remote countries where BHP Billiton within our organization, so we thought has offices, especially in parts of South Microsoft Office Communications Server America and Africa. 2007 was bound to be a good fit because it would seamlessly integrate with our existing Gary Buck, Chief Information Officer, BHP Office applications,” says Hoyle. Billiton Aluminium, says, “Some calls were made by personal assistants to department Having successfully deployed Office Live

    Communications Server 2005 several years

    earlier, BHP Billiton made the decision to

    implement Office Communications Server technology that provides Public Switched 2007 as the environment for online meetings Telephone Network (PSTN) and Private within the company. After discussions with Branch Exchange (PBX) interoperability for Microsoft in late November 2005, and with Office Communications Server 2007, was assistance from Microsoft Consulting installed at the Worsley office where a Cisco Services (MCS), the deployment began in gateway was in place. early February 2006.

     One of the more illuminating aspects of the Office Communications Server 2007 was deployment was the flexibility of the handsets installed side-by-side with Live and speakerphone devices. “We were

    Communications Server 2005 to ensure a pleased that we did not have to stick to smooth transition to the new environment. traditional handset solutions,” says Hoyle. Says Hoyle, “We have transitioned to the new “We were able to deploy Polycom CX700 IP ? conferencing and platform over a period of 12 months.” The phone and Polycom CX200 USB handsets as collaboration devices. The use of these solution was deployed in a consolidated well as Polycom CX100 speakerphones, and devices is helping us rethink the possibilities topology with three Hewlett Packard blade Microsoft RoundTableof using the voice component across some of servers behind hardware load balancers. our operations,” he adds. In addition, Edge servers, used for external meeting presence management, where an indicator scenarios, are deployed in an Internet button signals an employees availability, gateway to mediate traffic between clients helps workers choose the best way to contact and servers, and help use existing bandwidth the person they are messaging. and system resources more efficiently. BHP Billiton expects that Microsoft A voice pilot was established at Worley RoundTable (with its attractive price point) Alumina, a BHP Billiton Aluminium Customer will have a significant impact on the way in Sector Group (CSG) business, located in which its employees think about group Collie, Australia. “The Aluminium CSG is conferencing, especially in bridging co-scattered all over the globe with operations in located groups and remote groups. Suriname, Mozambique, South Africa, and RoundTable devices, with their 360-degree Brazil, to name just a few,” says Buck. “The camera and active microphone detection, are general existing voice quality from the local ideal for large-number conferences that BHP telecom operators in these countries is poor, Billiton sets up between its offices and the so it was an interesting challenge to run the more distant operating locations. trial with this particular group.” BHP Billiton has now decommissioned Live The trial was limited to 100 users, some of Communications Server 2005 and has whom already used a Cisco Call Manager IP moved all global users to Office telephony solution. This required little Communications Server 2007 within weeks modification to integrate with Office of the product being released to market. Communications Server 2007. “I think the voice capabilities of Office Communications

    Server 2007 were the most complex part of

    the deployment only because it was brand Benefits new technology for us,” adds Buck, “but the By deploying Office Communications Server installation was simple and straightforward 2007, BHP Billiton was able to consolidate its with little impact on our existing setup.” A telephony operations and offer its staff single mediation server, which is the

    “Having a consistent

    tool like Office

    Communications Server improved voice communications and online meetings, all within a simple, unified user Increased Productivity 2007 for everyone to

    experience. BHP Billiton employees now have A critical value of Office Communications use across the business a fully integrated environment they can Server 2007 for BHP Billiton is the use of access through a single interface (Office presence management. Presence was a strategic Communicator 2007), which is quick and management helps remote workers to be

    advantage for us.” intuitive to learn. With on-premise visible to each other, and flags their conferencing and single-product, software-availability or presence. The presence of a Gary Buck, Chief Information Officer, BHP based security built-in, Office team worker can be critical when a time-Billiton Aluminium Communications Server 2007 significantly sensitive business has to be made. “I think reduces overall communications costs, eases we definitely attained a better understanding management, and improves response times of the value of presence within our and security. organization since deploying the Office

     Communications Server 2007 solution,” says

    Improved Operational Costs Hoyle. “With distributed groups, it is A key goal for BHP Billiton was to take important to know where people are and advantage of its existing investment across when they are available. This helps open its global data network. “Having a consistent communication, saves time, and improves tool like Office Communications Server 2007 decision making.”

    for everyone to use across the business was a strategic advantage for us,” says Buck. By BHP Billiton has already seen a change to the deploying Office Communications Server way it conducts meetings. “The degree of

    2007 internally to host its voice and control now in the hands of the presenter, as conferencing capabilities, BHP Billiton has well as the use of audio/video devices such been able to improve operational costs by as Web cams, headsets, and Microsoft reducing its dependence on hardware-based RoundTable with active speaker video and IP PBX solutions, separate phone directories, panorama video, changes the meeting and more. dynamics,” notes Hoyle.

    Using one-click dialing, users can call anyone Reduced Travel and Conferencing Costs inside the company, whether they know the On-premise conferencing capabilities have number or not, saving both time and expense. had a positive impact on cost savings for BHP Using Office Communicator 2007, users can Billiton. “Like any large organization, we have simply locate the recipient’s name within the significant cost pressure to reduce our travel entire company directory. Then they can budget,” notes Buck. Using Office connect using the medium of choicee-mail Communications Server 2007, the company message, instant messaging (IM), voice or can now introduce an internal-conferencing videoat the click of a mouse. solution and reduce its dependence on third-

     party solutions like WebEx. This will reduce The Office Communications Server 2007 travel, eliminate external conferencing, and environment provides a single point of save on long-distance call costs. contact that has helped streamline communications and simplified management Says Hoyle, “There are obvious potential of previously separate data streams and costs savings, but what is even harder to different hardware environments such as IM, quantify is the improved value to the voice mail, and proprietary audio and video business. Because Office Communications conferencing. Server 2007 lends itself to so many different

scenarios, it has a really positive impact on

    total costs. One of our groups saved more than U.S.$10,000 on just one meeting. Normally participants would have flown in, attended the meeting, and stayed overnight. Instead they ran a Microsoft Office Live Meeting session using a RoundTable device at the central location and cameras at some of the other end points. They rated this as a huge success.”

Better Quality

    As well as the ease of connecting to users, BHP Billiton was immediately impressed with the voice quality. “As a rule, people are surprised by the voice quality compared to even existing PSTN systems,” notes Hoyle. “In places like Suriname and Mozambique, the voice quality is superior to what we had before using PSTN voice lines.” In many instances, audio quality from RoundTable was perceived to be better than the previous conferencing option used. In addition, the panoramic video display delivered by RoundTable within the Live Meeting console, and its tracking capability both improve remote meeting quality. “As people talk and move about, the RoundTable system tracks changes in speakers and their location,” says

    Hoyle. “The other people in the meetings give us really positive feedback on the system.”

Rapid Deployment

    The quality of service and access for users is higher than with other, separate systems because deployment to new staff is a simple one-stop deployment of all services. Once access to the required levels of functionality (e-mail, IM, video, voice, and telephony) have been sanctioned by management, the IT department can instantly configure Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 and Office

    Communications Server 2007 to give that user full access. This saves setup time, is easier to apply consistent standards to, and gives users faster access to the new functionality.

For More Information Microsoft Office System

    For more information about Microsoft The Microsoft Office system is the business

    products and services, call the Microsoft world’s chosen environment for information

    Sales Information Center at (800) 426-work, providing the programs, servers, and

    9400. In Canada, call the Microsoft services that help you succeed by

    Canada Information Centre at (877) 568-transforming information into impact.

    2495. Customers who are deaf or hard-of-

    hearing can reach Microsoft text telephone For more information about the Microsoft

    (TTY/TDD) services at (800) 892-5234 in Office system, go to:

    the United States or (905) 568-9641 in www.microsoft.com/office

    Canada. Outside the 50 United States and

    Canada, please contact your local

    Microsoft subsidiary. To access information

    using the World Wide Web, go to:

    www.microsoft.com

For more information about BHP Billiton

    products and services, call (61) 1300 55

    47 57 or visit the Web site at:

    www.bhpbilliton.com

     Software and Services Hardware

    ? Microsoft Office ? Polycom CX700 IP phones

    ? Microsoft Office Communications ? Polycom CX100 speakerphones

    Server 2007 ? Palm Treo smartphones

    ? Microsoft Server Product Portfolio ? Polycom CX200 USB handsets

    ? Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 ? Microsoft RoundTable

     Partners

    ? Microsoft Consulting Services (MCS) This case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFT MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. Document published October 2007

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