Peer to Peer Magazine

Winter 2014

The quarterly publication of the International Legal Technology Association

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 72 of 75

PEER TO PEER: THE QUARTERLY MAGA ZINE OF ILTA 74 Change Management Aids Move to Lync About the Author Dean Leung is the Chief Information Officer at Holland & Knight LLP. He has 20 years of IT experience in international law firms and is serving his third term as ILTA's Communications Technologies Peer Group Vice President. Dean is an industry thought leader on the topics of mobility, virtualization, business continuity and voice/data communications. He holds several IT designations, including Microsoft's MCSE. Contact Dean at Taking this as an opportunity to identify a replacement with no tethers to our legacy vendor or technology, we looked at our needs and wants for the future and determined we were not in the market for a traditional private branch exchange (PBX) or voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) handset- based solution. Instead, we wanted a unified communications platform, and we chose Lync Enterprise Voice to provide it. Here are some challenges and lessons we are encountering with the replacement of 138-year-old handset technology with a seven-year-old computer- centric platform. NEEDS Our core needs were simple: • Replace our 25 aging distributed PBX switches with current technologies • Reduce costs • Provide resiliency in disaster recovery and business continuity scenarios Lync helped us with all of these needs. We were able to leverage our current redundant WAN (MPLS) network in a centralized data center design. Lync was included in our Microsoft Enterprise Agreement, which helped with costs. And the whole system provided a solution to office PBX outages, which had become more frequent over time under our previous vendor. To give us even greater resiliency to face local telecommunications failures like what was experienced with Superstorm Sandy, we are moving from local primary rate interface (PRI) lines to a centralized session initiation protocol (SIP) environment. We will also leverage the disaster recovery and business continuity infrastructure already in place in our data centers. WANTS When we were developing our requirements document, several key points came out of user interviews: • Any new solution needed to be easy to use and function for the end user like a traditional phone system. • Our existing platforms for audio conferencing, screen sharing, presence/ IM and videoconferencing were useful but difficult to use together. • Given the demands of client site visits, court time, travel and work-life balance, we needed a menu of options that would provide the ability to collaborate with colleagues just as effectively when out of the office as when in. • Users needed to be able to integrate only those features beyond dial tone that would be beneficial to their workflow. We found that Lync met most of our wants, just as with our needs. It is highly LESSONS LEARNED At Holland & Knight, our telephone infrastructure was out of date. Given its age and design, mere updating was not the answer: The entire environment needed to be replaced.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Peer to Peer Magazine - Winter 2014