Magazine article CRM Magazine

Flying with Avaya: Edmonton Airport Installed IP-Based Technology to Manage Its Phones, Also Helping Safety Levels and Improving Customer Service

Magazine article CRM Magazine

Flying with Avaya: Edmonton Airport Installed IP-Based Technology to Manage Its Phones, Also Helping Safety Levels and Improving Customer Service

Article excerpt

An airport is a busy place, not only for the passengers but also for the airlines, maintenance staff, and administrative offices that support its daily operations. Maintaining an updated communication system to manage these airport tenants is critical, not only to ensure turbulence-free operations, but safety. Edmonton International Airport, located in the capital of Alberta, Canada, is no exception.

Edmonton Airport Authority (EAA), the local not-for-profit organization that is responsible for the management of the city's four airports, maintains the communication system. The problem EAA faced was twofold: First, it needed to improve the level of service for airport tenants in the administrative offices, various airlines based at the airport, local restaurants, and stores. "We had some delays with our telephone moves, adds, and changes," says Mike Gauthier, superintendent of electrical services at EAA. "With an international airport, we have lots of tenants moving, coming, or going. Whether it's moving, adding, or programming a phone, those service charges were high. It didn't help that the local telecommunications company was having labor disputes with management. All of this was hurting service."

Second, EAA needed to improve emergency preparedness with a flexible network that would support its needs into the future. The new solution needed to link the Air Operations Maintenance Center (AOMC) and Edmonton Airport Fire Station into the airport's communication infrastructure.

To find a vendor EAA simply put the job out for tender and let companies bid on it. Avaya brought the best offer, according to Gauthier. Avaya deployed its MultiVantage Communication Applications suite, which includes its flagship product, the Avaya Communication Manager IP telephony software and messaging application. The installation proved to be easier than anyone could have expected, according to Gauthier.

The implementation was split over two days and done at night. Each implementation period took between five and six hours and with no loss of service between cutovers.

"We already had the infrastructure in place for IP, as our Internet system was up and running," Gauthier says. …

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