Podcast: The Road to Failure, and How to Stay Off It

Monday Mar 29th 2010 by Carl Weinschenk
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Unified communications deployments can cut across all of a company's departments and touch every communications tool it uses. Clearly, there are many ways in which it can fail. Mark Birkhead, the managing principal for Avaya Global Solutions, tells site editor Carl Weinschenk that  careful planning on a number of levels can keep a project from melting down. (Podcast time: 22:00)

Mark Birkhead on UC Implementation Challenges: [swf file="http://vid.itbe.com/ctoedge/birkheadmarch0329.mp3"]

I spoke to Mark Birkhead, the Managing Principal for Avaya Global Solutions, about a white paper he helped put together for the company outlining the key reasons that unified communications implementations fail.

The list of problems includes misaligning business requirements, not properly understanding end-user capabilities, poor solution sizing, mismatches between vendors and partners, choosing the wrong platform, not linking investments and benefits, misjudging ROI and TCO, bad change management, and lack of executive sponsorship.

We tackled three of these areas in the podcast: Misaligning business requirements, which really is the key from which the others flow, solution sizing, and creating the right vendor/partner match.

Birkhead offers a lot of interesting detail. Clearly, a successful UC implementation is no accident. Indeed, it is far more of a challenge than other initiatives because UC cuts across so many departmental and technical lines.

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