Sanofi-Aventis is one of the world’s leading pharmaceutical companies. With 100,000 employees, global communication is a challenging, yet essential, part of the company’s product development. Because voice technologies also play an important role in collaboration, the Sanofi-Aventis collaboration team wanted to find a secure means to incorporate them into the company’s business and research processes. One obstacle to this is the current telephony infrastructure. Because there are a large number of offices in many different countries, the company uses many different telephony providers, which creates a heterogeneous environment of traditional Private Branch Exchange (PBX) systems and software-powered telephony using voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). When Microsoft® Office Communications Server 2007 became available in the fall of 2007, Sanofi-Aventis saw the opportunity to implement a unified communications solution that would help to securely handle all of its communications needs through a common user interface. The company launched a pilot program to test the product’s capabilities. “We built a full, unified communications test environment, so employees could assess all the collaboration features.” The test environment included the integration of Office Communications Server 2007 with the company’s PBX in Frankfurt. A mediation server links to the PBX through an AudioCodes Mediant 2000 gateway, which easily integrates with Microsoft software and provides high performance and voice quality. Employees in Frankfurt have been making and receiving computer-to-computer and computer-to-PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) voice calls through Office Communicator 2007.
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