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Calling for More Control

January 15, 2009

Summary

Mitel corralled the explosive growth of its international enterprise network with Symantec e-discovery, backup and inventory software.

IP communications with a global reach

Mitel is an international telecommunications company based in Kanata, Ontario with over 100 offices in 90 countries. It is a leader in IP-based communications, including voice, video, and unified messaging. While it dominates the small-to-medium-sized business market with its innovative and reliable phone system offerings, the company also has a significant presence in enterprise customer sites where unified messaging and video service are strategic applications. An extensive network of 1500 value added resellers sell and service Mitel’s award-winning products. With such an expansive international network infrastructure to maintain, Mitel employs over 100 IT administrators to oversee its computing environment.

A trio of tough problems

With its business thriving around the world, Mitel’s computing environment began to show the strain of its success. First, and most importantly, its backup strategy was not centralized or uniform; a variety of software, devices, and operating systems severely complicated management and potentially put data at risk. Another problem plaguing the company was email retention and retrieval. Third-party services were performing some discovery functions, but they proved slow and costly. Other email archiving and retrieval techniques were manual and consumed far too many IT resources. Finally, because of a number of business acquisitions, the IT staff had difficulty cataloging, documenting, and upgrading a myriad of equipment inherited when bringing the new businesses into the Mitel fold.

Symantec solutions for email, backup and asset management

As the IT staff researched solutions using Gartner, IDC, and Forrester analyst reports, they discovered that one company provided solutions for all three of their problems: Symantec. Mitel then decided to act on a number of IT fronts. First the team centralized its entire backup system with Veritas NetBackup, protecting its highly heterogeneous server and storage environments. “We have one master server that does all our backups for the entire company, so it’s not something we take lightly. We didn’t want to go through the pain of a learning curve ourselves, so we brought in Symantec Consulting Services for the upgrade,” said Tony Fiorentin, manager of U.S. networks and systems for Mitel.
As the IT staff researched solutions using Gartner, IDC, and Forrester analyst reports, they discovered that one company provided solutions for all three of their problems: Symantec. Mitel then decided to act on a number of IT fronts. First the team centralized its entire backup system with Veritas NetBackup, protecting its highly heterogeneous server and storage environments. “We have one master server that does all our backups for the entire company, so it’s not something we take lightly. We didn’t want to go through the pain of a learning curve ourselves, so we brought in Symantec Consulting Services for the upgrade,” said Tony Fiorentin, manager of U.S. networks and systems for Mitel.

From deployment to on-going support

Throughout the deployment and after-sales support, Symantec guided Mitel through the process. Symantec Consulting played a key role in designing, installing, and then training the Mitel IT staff to ensure a smooth deployment and ensure that changes did not disrupt day-to-day operations. After installation of the Symantec solutions, Mitel purchased Essential Support Services for 24X7 service.
The last project to tackle was perhaps the most difficult. “The CEO and CIO told me that we had a huge problem with email. We could not keep it forever. Email is not a document management system. Their edict to me was to go ‘figure it out,’” said Mark Olsen, director of controls and compliance for Mitel. Ultimately his team deployed Enterprise Vault to handle its burgeoning email growth and to streamline and automate e-discovery and retrieval. The switchover, including retention policies formulation and IT training took over nine months.

From deployment to on-going support

Throughout the deployment and after-sales support, Symantec guided Mitel through the process. Symantec Consulting played a key role in designing, installing, and then training the Mitel IT staff to ensure a smooth deployment and ensure that changes did not disrupt day-to-day operations. After installation of the Symantec solutions, Mitel purchased Essential Support Services for 24X7 service.

Savings after the switch

By gaining greater control of its backup, asset management, and email systems, Mitel realized not only a more reliable and efficient network, it garnered nearly $8 million in savings in labor and cost avoidance. In an exhaustive business value analysis, the Alchemy Solutions Group detailed significant cost advantages for Mitel over a four year period. The following are a representative selection from the Alchemy report of projected cost savings associated with deploying Symantec solutions at Mitel:
  • Backup labor productivity increases will save Mitel $800,000 from January 2005 through December 2009.
  • Backup troubleshooting labor is projected to cut $500,000 in costs from January 2005 through December 2009.
  • Email storage savings will amount to nearly $250,000 from May 2006 to December 2009.
  • Email search labor will cut $3.5 million due to faster email search capabilities from May 2006 through December 2009, and end Mitel’s reliance on a third-party service provider.
  • Asset management labor costs will be reduced by $325,000 from January 2007 to December 2009.
For more information, click here to read the full Mitel Business Value Analysis Study by Alchemy Solutions Group.

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