The Cisco Intercompany Media Engine Enables Boundary-less Communications
by Darren Kay, Enterprise Architect of Dimension Data Australia
In November, Cisco announced the Cisco Intercompany Media Engine. The Intercompany Media Engine gives people business-to-business communications capabilities over any IP network. It’s a brand new product that enables boundary-less communications between organizations, including business partners, customers, and suppliers. The idea is to make communications between separate companies and organizations as effortless as it is within a single organization.
With the Intercompany Media Engine, your communications travel over an IP network or the Internet, but you use the phones you are already using, the numbers you are already dialing, and the contact lists you have already entered. It doesn’t even matter whether you’re working within or outside of your company. The ease, efficiency, and overall experience of communicating with each other will be exactly the same.
One important benefit of the Intercompany Media Engine is reduced costs. Instead of using the PSTN, the communications path for business to business communications is going to be an IP network or the internet. Because you are using more efficient IP network connections, you can potentially reduce the number of PSTN connections you need.
We recognize the Intercompany Media Engine as a business enabler, which has even more value than its cost reduction benefits. While it has the potential to save on telephony costs, the greatest benefit for Dimension Data is increased business value through richer communication across Dimension Data global regions, and between our customers and partners. To link our Dimension Data regions would have been difficult, time-consuming and very costly for us to achieve using conventional IP telephony over the WAN – given IP addressing overlap issues, and simple things like overlapping phone extension plans. With Cisco Intercompany Media Engine, normalizing to E.164 numbering plans and external Public IP addressing, these headaches disappear. In addition to the reduced voice costs, the other key features are the richer communications achieved with intercompany video and wideband audio.
While easily collaborating with customers, partners, and suppliers via rich media is compelling, it’s just the start. The possibilities for leveraging the Intercompany Media Engine to deliver innovative capabilities, experiences and applications, to be shared among customers and partners, is limitless. Intercompany capabilities such as directory access, one-click collaboration via WebEx, instant availability status via presence, instant virtual business card exchange, and application interactive prompts, such as IVR-delivered softkeys, are just a few of the array of capabilities that are possible.
To insure an enterprise-grade solution, Intercompany Media Engine has security, efficiency, and quality built in. The security and call spam blocking features address a range of enterprise security issues.
As you can tell, it’s worth looking into. Dimension Data has, and we’re happy we did.