Case Study

Agriculture Multinational Evaluates Leading Systems for Better Video Conferencing

A proof of concept in the WWT Advanced Technology Center results in a single, scalable collaboration solution

Challenge

A multinational agricultural company had acquired video conferencing equipment from a number of different vendors over the years. What they needed going forward was a single solution, one that would support their usability and scaling requirements as well as be easy to set up and maintain.

The challenge was that procuring enough equipment to test at the scale they needed would be a logistical and financial nightmare. They asked us to build out a proof of concept (POC) using our Advanced Technology Center (ATC) infrastructure that could run different system designs and configurations, and ultimately guide them to a solution that would work best in their environment.

Solution

We were able to quickly spin up a number of conferencing system configurations, including on-site and cloud-based management strategies using hardware owned by the multinational as well as video hardware and back-end capabilities in the ATC. Drawing on the ATC’s “built-in” capabilities allowed us to provide these environments extremely quickly in addition to saving the multinational the costs of procuring all the equipment themselves.

The two video hardware solutions under consideration were from Polycom and Cisco, with the multinational wanting to explore infrastructure and software solutions from Cisco and Microsoft.

One of the big questions they had was how their existing Polycom hardware would integrate with a software solution from another provider. Given our experience integrating systems and hardware of all stripes, we were able to show them how their equipment could be used in any number of configurations, such as internal video conferencing meeting with on-premise infrastructure, external video conferencing meeting with cloud based solution (room only), or external video conferencing meeting with a connected meeting room. We then walked them through any trade-offs or challenges they might encounter running each configuration with different vendor systems.

Once the materials and systems were set up, we helped them test each system and configuration for a number of usability, performance, ease of deployment and system interoperability requirements identified by the customer.

Because they wanted to test multiple kinds of video cameras connecting to the same meeting at once, we opened the entirety of the ATC to them for testing, including systems and connected conference rooms we use ourselves.

Conclusion

After extensive testing and exploration, the multinational was in a position to select their video technology to meet their usability, performance, deployment and interoperability requirements. They ultimately decided to go with a Cisco video conferencing solution based upon those requirements.

This proof of concept displayed our capability to quickly spin up environments and the value of our standing test labs. Through the ATC, we were able to help the multinational come to a confident technology decision quickly and with reduced risk in procurement costs.

Business outcomes as a result of this POC included:

  1. Cost Reduction – By using existing ATC capabilities, we were able to help the multinational save procurement costs for their testing, as well as save costs on the back end by selecting an integrated and consolidated video conferencing system.
  2. Quality Assurance – We showed them how to integrate their existing equipment into their selected solution and together tested the solution to ensure it met their requirements.
  3. Confidence in Decisions – Having hands-on experience with various configurations, hardware systems and platforms gave our customer much higher confidence that their chosen conferencing solution will meet their requirements going forward.