UC systems are connecting the increasingly disconnected workforce

8-12-16_UC-Blog-graphic_800pxFor more than a decade, unified communications (UC) technologies from industry leaders like Cisco and Avaya have been helping businesses collaborate remotely while reducing telecom and infrastructure costs by merging voice and data into a single network.

Today’s on-premises and cloud-based UC platforms take savings and efficiency to a higher level, going beyond voice, email, web chat and instant messaging to include multimedia collaboration capabilities as well. Best of all, the cost of endpoint technology is coming down, enabling small and medium size businesses to deploy sophisticated UC systems more affordably than ever. Continue reading

Explore the benefits of Software Defined Networking

7-18-16-DataCtr-Blog-graphic-742x388Like server and storage virtualization, network virtualization abstracts existing resources and allows them be viewed and managed from a single pane of glass, using open protocols such as OpenFlow.

This allows for on-demand provisioning of resources without the need to physically configure cabling and switches with every network change. Software Defined Networking (SDN) takes things a step further, entirely separating the control plane from the data plane, and enabling administrators to spin up virtual components, virtually at will.

Zones teams with industry leaders like Cisco and Avaya, to bring the speed, flexibility and scalability of software defined networking to all kinds of organizations.

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Be the disruptor, not the disrupted.

It’s well-documented that companies like Uber, Airbnb, and Facebook have reaped huge rewards by tapping into massive markets made possible by emerging new business models. They were adept at quickly modernizing their networks to connect with their customers where their customer wanted to be, and with it came big benefits: engaged customers, innovative experiences, and new revenue streams.

To get ahead – and stay ahead – companies must realize it’s a whole new game now, and you don’t want to be left behind while all this digital disruption is taking place. Digitization requires IT functions to be thoroughly transformed, including sophisticated scaling to meet new demand fluctuation; increasing reliability; speeding time to market; and quickly getting digital innovations to consumers. Continue reading

Contact centers build solid connections

hp_windows_upgrade_3489896bWhen customers or prospects want to connect with your business, they want an immediate response and rapid results. It’s not always easy to keep up with those demands. Small companies can become especially frustrated because they do not employ enough workers to perform their routine duties effectively while interacting with customers at the same time.

Fortunately, there are solutions available to help people and businesses meet the challenge. Continue reading

Transforming the network from security liability to security asset

security engineer photoTurn your network into security sensor

For years, IT leaders have been doing everything possible to guard the network from security threats. And with good reason. Once infiltrated, the network can be used to propagate threats across everything connected to it.

The industry’s response – in the form of endpoint protection, firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and intrusion prevention systems – banked on the idea that preventing infiltration would keep the network secure.

While protective and preventive measures remain important first lines of defense, the increasing number and variety of zero-day and social engineering threats mean that even the best protection at the edge risks being rendered temporarily ineffective by a skilled intruder, putting the network at risk. Continue reading

Advanced mobility management solutions enable a more secure mobile enterprise

Take a comprehensive approach to business mobility

3.25.16-Mobility-Tablets_BLOG-HeroThe growth of mobile infrastructures in organizations is creating the most connected workforce ever, but is your mobile strategy addressing the potential security threats that accompany this mobile revolution?

Minimizing threats while maximizing worker mobility and productivity requires a holistic approach that encompasses every aspect of the existing infrastructure – including wired and wireless networks, unified communications compatibility, security, and cloud services – as well as plans for mobile device management, device selection, app development, activation services, and, ultimately, deployment.

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How do you see UC?

Leveraging Unified Communications to streamline collaboration and workflows

Unified Communications & CollaborationWhat is Unified Communications?

When asked that simple question, many people will respond that UC is workplace instant messaging, an IP phone system, or visual voicemail. While these are all common features, they are by no means the whole answer.

Zones defines Unified Communications as a networked communications platform that seamlessly integrates voice, data and applications to enable workers and customers to interact in the most efficient way possible.

Today’s UC systems extend beyond voice, email, web chat and instant messaging to include multimedia collaboration capabilities as well. Using a variety of technologies from top-tier manufacturers such as Cisco, Avaya, Microsoft and Polycom, Zones deploys UC solutions that scale from network-based PBX systems to integrated voice/messaging/video collaboration suites to those including multi-site telepresence systems. Continue reading

Comprehensive workplace mobility solutions empower workers and protect organizations

Mobility-Hero-Master-742x388Keeping people productive – wherever they work – is key to succeeding in today’s business climate.

A decade ago, road warriors were well equipped with a laptop and a BlackBerry. Their counterparts today expect worldwide connectivity to the Internet for their personal inventories of notebooks, tablets, and smartphones. Even at the office, workers expect seamless transitions between wired and wireless networks as they move about the office with their devices.

The good news is that it’s getting easier to meet those expectations. The bad news is that easy solutions are not always the best solutions. Continue reading

Transform new and existing buildings into intelligent facilities

Today’s buildings require an array of complex systems to support the diverse populations and purposes they serve. But until recently, conventional wisdom held that each system required separate networks and controls, creating an environment that was difficult and expensive to operate and maintain. Pennzoil-Social-Master_742x388_Lower-Text

Advances in networking, automation and Internet of Things (IoT) technology has changed that, transforming the way we design, construct, and upgrade buildings; how we operate and maintain them; and how their occupants experience and use them.

Now, building services can be delivered over a single centralized IP-based network that dramatically reduces cost and improves efficiency. Such converged networks enable a new building paradigm that provides better monitoring, analysis, automation and control between all of a building’s complex systems, and lays a future-proof foundation for growth. Continue reading

Rethinking enterprise mobility

A holistic approach improves utility, efficiency, and security

Mobility Wheel SquareIn 2016, a flexible and secure mobile infrastructure is becoming essential to the day-to-day operation of most organizations. But frequently, when you look under the hood of an organization’s mobile infrastructure, you find a collection of disparate mobility initiatives rolled out over the years.

Too often, various business units, offices and divisions – as well as IT departments – have greenlighted waves of ad hoc device roll-outs, Wi-Fi implementations, carrier selections, BYOD initiatives, and band-aid security overlays. The result can be a fragmented mobile infrastructure that lives in silos and creates gaps and redundancies across the enterprise. It’s also an approach that opens the door to security risks, duplication of effort, and unnecessary costs. Continue reading