The Social Security Administration plans a move to VOIP in preparation for retiring baby boomers.
Nortel Networks is the contractor on a 10-year, $300 million project for the
Social Security Administration, which is upgrading the telephone systems in its
field offices to offer voice over IP.
The project is one of the largest deployments to date, Nortel officials said
The SSA intends to upgrade 1,600 field offices to IP telephony based on
Nortel's Communication Server 1000 IP PBX, Nortel said. It will move off
existing telephone systems and onto Nortel's Communication Server 1000 at 205
field offices in the first year, and then migrate 500 field offices a year as
it moves to VOIP.
The TSRP (Telephone Systems Replacement Project) is intended to help the SSA
better handle the coming influx of retiring baby boomers and provide more
efficient call handling to more quickly connect callers to the experts who can
answer their questions about Social Security, Nortel said.
The project will also include contact center, unified messaging and
integrated voice response for as many as 55,000 SSA field agents. Those will be
based on Nortel's Media Processing Server 500 IVR, Unified Messaging 2000 and
CallPilot contact center systems. The contract also includes Nortel IP
"This validates our ability to do large-scale, mission-critical
deployments," said Net Payne, vice president of North American marketing
At the VoiceCon show in Orlando, Fla.,
Nortel announced that, like its Innovative Communications Alliance partner
Microsoft, it had penned a global deal to jointly deliver high-definition and
telepresence videoconferencing with Tandberg.
Nortel, which already has a similar agreement with Polycom, will provide
technology services around Tandberg's HD and Telepresence systems and offer
those as a managed service.
Also at the show, Nortel announced that it had added a mobility extension to
the latest release of its CS 1000 that integrates cell phones and smart phones
into its call services.
It provides "a single interface between the desk and cell phone,
five-digit dialing and seamless handoffs from the desk phone to the mobile
phone. We're bringing unified communications to life by tying mobile into what
you have in the office," Payne said.
CS 1000 Version 5.5, due in April, also provides a presence indicator to let
co-workers know when the user is available or on the phone, including the
mobile phone; the ability to move from one handset to another device without
interrupting the call via a handoff button on the desk phone; and the ability
to be identified by callers on a single phone line.
Nortel also updated its Mobile Communication 3100
fixed mobile convergence offering to allow phone calls to be handed off to a
wireless LAN, available now. "It provides a seamless handoff
between the internal corporate WLAN and the mobile device. It can save 30
percent of wireless costs," Payne said.