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Sage Research Releases IP Telephony Best Practices White Paper; Shares Real-World Advice on Challenges and Successes of Implementing IPT.

BOSTON -- Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, Prudential Northwest Properties Win Top Honors in IPT Best Practices Contest

Sage Research, the recently acquired technology practice of Chadwick Martin Bailey, today announced the availability of its new "IP Telephony Best Practices" white paper which shares the benefits and most pressing challenges experienced by participants of Sage's IP Telephony Best Practices contest. Additionally, the company announced its contest winners. Outrigger Hotels & Resorts took top honors in the large category (more than 1,000 employees) with its innovative call center solution. Prudential Northwest Properties placed first among small/medium companies, with a solution enabling real estate agents to be more responsive in the field. First Merchants Corporation, the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, and First Guarantee Mortgage received honorable mentions. The two winners will receive $500 gift certificates for their winning entries and are featured in the white paper.

The white paper can be downloaded at http://www.sageresearch.com/IPTWPdownload.htm.

"IP telephony is a current issue for businesses of all sizes," said Kathryn Korostoff, vice president of Chadwick Martin Bailey's Technology practice. "Although there is a wealth of product and feature information on IP telephony available in the market, there are not enough case studies about real-world usage, benefits and challenges. One of the primary goals of this contest and the resulting white paper, is to cut through the clutter and help future evaluators hone in on the most critical issues and factors involved in a successful IP telephony evaluation and implementation."

Benefits of Switching to IP Telephony

Contestants reported their real-world experiences with IPT benefits - which included both cost-savings and productivity enhancing measures. Sage also heard of examples of how IPT enhances business resiliency, and higher employee and customer satisfaction. These and other benefits are detailed in the white paper.

Organization and Technical Challenges

Surprisingly, contest participants encountered many more organizational challenges than technical challenges when implementing IP telephony solutions. Many faced internal resistance, usually from upper management or the telecomm staff. For other organizations, end-user training was a time-consuming task that should have been more adequately planned in advance. Some of the technical challenges mentioned by contestants included the cost and difficulty of upgrading their current network infrastructure, selecting the right vendor, and managing a transitional system.

"Technically, the only common theme among all respondents was that there is no right solution that works for everyone," said Zeus Kerravala, vice president of Enterprise Computing and Networking at Yankee Group, and contest judge. "Every company found an IP telephony solution that uniquely fit their business needs. In the project management process, however, companies were very consistent in their approach. Most recommend extensive research and planning, preparing documentation on and investing in the current network infrastructure, and taking into consideration end-user and IT staff training before deployment."

Contestants were asked to provide a brief description of their company's IP PBX, IP Centrex or hosted IP telephony deployment, how the technology changed the way their company conducts business, and to share advice and pitfalls so that future implementers can learn from their experience. Submissions were judged based on innovation, quality of advice given, and business benefits achieved. The judges included Korostoff, Kerravala, and Judy Mottl, editor in chief of FierceCIO.

About Sage Research

Acquired in December 2005, Sage Research is now the technology practice of Chadwick Martin Bailey. With in-depth experience in the networking and telecommunications markets, Sage delivers actionable data and recommendations based on the most current qualitative and quantitative methods. Founded in 1993, Sage serves a broad client base that includes industry leaders and innovative start-ups. For more information, visit www.sageresearch.com.

About Chadwick Martin Bailey

Founded in 1984 by John Martin and Anne Bailey Berman, Chadwick Martin Bailey conducts market research for some of the world's largest companies in more than 30 countries. With corporate offices in Boston, Massachusetts, Chadwick Martin Bailey's team-based approach ensures that it applies the right combination of people and expertise to each business challenge or opportunity it faces. Whether it be marketing ROI, product development, or enhanced customer satisfaction, all of Chadwick Martin Bailey's custom research approaches have a singular focus: to bring clarity to what clients can do to get, keep, and grow customers. For more information please visit www.ChadwickMartinBailey.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Apr 5, 2006
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