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Mitel® (Nasdaq: MITL), a trusted provider of unified communications solutions, today announced that Sheldon College has successfully implemented a campus wide Mitel unified communications solution, with a fully integrated critical incident notification and response system.
Sheldon College is an independent, non-denominational, co-educational College catering for students from Kindergarten (Pre-Prep) through to Year 12.The College campus includes a Long Day Care facility for children from 15 months of age. The College also boasts a 2000 seat Sport and Entertainment Centre with full catering facilities. Sheldon College employs 210 academic and corporate staff supporting a student population of in excess of 1500 students.
Dr Lyn Bishop, Principal and founder of Sheldon College commented, “Our College aims to provide a 21st century, high quality education for students based on traditional values and progressive thinking. Our use of computer based teaching technologies has grown rapidly in recent years, so we decided to modernise our campus network. As part of that upgrade, we implemented a Mitel unified communications solution to help us communicate more effectively, whilst at the same time reducing our ongoing costs.”
To support the needs of their 58 acre campus, Sheldon College deployed Mitel Communications Director running on the Mitel 3300 IP Communications Platform (ICP). The entire solution was designed and implemented by TTGroup, a Mitel premierPARTNER based in Brisbane. TTGroup provides ongoing remote management and support for the College data and voice infrastructure.
Project planning commenced in July 2009, with installation occurring in March 2010. A high speed Gigabit Ethernet fibre network backbone was installed between buildings, with Mitel handsets and Power over Ethernet deployed throughout the College buildings. A large scale 802.11n wireless LAN was simultaneously deployed, allowing flexible access to the College’s computer systems for both staff and students.
In order to further improve the efficiency of communications and reduce ongoing running costs, the Mitel Applications Suite (MAS) has been implemented by the College. Installed onto a single server, the applications in MAS allow the College to easily produce reports, track phone usage, and help identify ways in which call costs might be reduced. In addition, MAS enables teleworking capabilities, and the ability to seamlessly link mobile phones with desk phones, thereby making it easier for teachers and administrators to work when away from their office desks. The solution now allows staff mobile phones to be linked to their desk phones, with calls routed automatically based on the time of day and the staff member’s work schedule. This ensures that staff can be easily contacted when working away from their desk, without the need to give out private mobile phone numbers.
Dr Lyn Bishop continued, “We are always looking at ways to become more productive, and maximise the time our staff spend with students. Our Mitel unified communications solution has helped us to improve our handling of parent phone calls, with an automated inquiry system which sensibly directs calls to the most relevant and available person. Some inquiries can now be dealt with fully automatically, with notices such as sporting fixture details read to parents via the computer.”
Mitel Unified Communicator Advanced and Mitel UC Advanced Softphone have been deployed to the computers used by administration and teaching staff. Phone calls can now be made by simply clicking on user names in a single organisation wide phone directory. Presence information shown in the directory makes it easy to determine whether a colleague is at their desk, busy, or working from home. The Mitel UC Advanced Softphone allows laptop users to make and receive phone calls directly from their laptops, either via the campus wireless LAN, or by using their home broadband Internet service.
The College has used Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) to tightly integrate their Mitel IP based communications solution with a Benbria BlazeCast critical incident notification and response system. The integration allows sophisticated delivery and tracking of critical multicast messages via Mitel handsets, mobile phones, and loudspeaker systems located around the campus. This enables administrators and teachers to rapidly issue emergency notifications using predetermined action plans, while instantly tracking responses from staff across the entire campus.
Dr Lyn Bishop commented further, “Every school needs to plan for emergency situations. By integrating our Mitel handsets with the campus emergency response system, we are now able to accurately deliver messages to any point in our campus, whilst tracking responses with confidence. This has helped us to deliver a safer campus environment for students and staff alike.”
Gwilym Funnell, Mitel Vice President for Asia Pacific commented, “Schools with large campus environments face challenges keeping in touch with staff. Mitel’s unified communications solutions make it easy for colleagues to tell whether you are at your desk, teaching a class, or out in the playground. Calls can be automatically directed to the most relevant person, while avoiding disturbing staff who are busy in the classroom.”
About Sheldon College Sheldon College is an independent, non-denominational, co-educational College based in Brisbane. Founded in 1997 by Dr Lyn Bishop, Sheldon College has become one of the leading academic institutions in the country. The College boasts an outstanding educational program catering for the academic, sporting and cultural dimensions of College life.
About Mitel Mitel Networks offers a comprehensive portfolio of IP-based communications solutions, which consists of IP telephony platforms, unified communications and collaboration applications and managed and network services. By integrating voice, video and data communications with business applications, Mitel enables businesses to improve their performance. Mitel is a leader in the market evolution to unified communications and collaboration, enabling customers to move beyond basic fixed telephony and disparate communications tools toward integrated multi-media communications and collaboration between users, wherever they may be located. Mitel’s U.S. headquarters are in Phoenix, Arizona. Global headquarters are in Ottawa, Canada, with offices, partners, and resellers worldwide.
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