The Pulse

The official blog of Sentinel Technologies

A Town Migrates Their Phone System to Cisco Voice

Mon March 29, 2021


As a suburban town was preparing to enter a new era of growth and innovation, they sought to upgrade their phone system to support their current and future needs. They wanted the ability to separate resources in a virtual environment, and to deploy third party applications for a variety of purposes. The increase in employees working remotely also led to a desire for single number reach so everyone would be easier to contact without being forced to call multiple numbers.


The town had an aging digital and IP Avaya phone system located on two PRIs (Primary Rate Interfaces) that terminated in their main data center. Some of the phones had reached end of support and it was costly to replace them with IP phones, while other phones on the system required extensive infrastructure maintenance and support with software and security patches. In order to avoid further expenses to maintain an outdated system, the town decided to migrate their phones and three contact centers from the Avaya infrastructure to a new Cisco Unified Communications platform.

There were a number of features the town wanted to include with the migration to the new platform. Their existing PRIs needed to be shifted to a Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) system, with routers placed in the primary and secondary data centers to provide carrier redundancy. Additionally, the town sought to expand their remote work capabilities so employees could operate from just about any location, and use cell phones or other devices with applications to easily stay in communication with one another. They were also eager to deploy single number reach in their environment, which would simplify calling between employees by letting them dial one number and have it ring on all their devices. Lastly, the town aimed to reduce the number of applications in use by adopting one to manage both voice messages and emails.


Sentinel’s solution was a full Cisco VoIP deployment using industry standards to include the following Cisco software solutions:

  • Communication Manager – 1 Publisher, 2 Subscribers and 2 TFTP Servers
  • Unity Connection – 2 HA Servers
  • IM and Presence – 2 HA Servers
  • Unified Contact Center Express – 2 HA Servers
  • Cisco Expressway Servers – 2 Expressway-C servers and 2 Expressway- E Servers
  • Emergency Responder – 2 HA Servers

Cisco Unified Communications combines the flexibility and convenience of mobile communications with secure and managed benefits of Cisco IP communication. The proposed solution included:

Single number reach. This solution gives users the ability to direct incoming calls to ring on multiple devices as well as the Jabber phone or desk phone, thus providing a single number for callers to reach the user. This extends the call control of Cisco Communications Manager from a mobile worker’s primary workspace phones to any location or device.

Single Inbox. This solution gives the users the ability to have a single pane to see all digital communication, including email and voicemail messages. This also enables the mobile worker to check voicemail from a mobile device connected to the customer network without requiring additional applications on the phone.

Cisco Instant Messaging and Presence (Cisco Jabber). This solution is a desktop, laptop, and cell phone application that transparently integrates a wide variety of communications channels and services such as voice, instant messaging, voicemail, presence, web conferencing, and video from a single multimedia interface on your device in order to simplify communication and collaboration.

Dual-Mode Phones. These devices function as enterprise IP phones on campus or remotely connected through the Cisco Expressway. They typically provide a wide variety of smartphone capabilities, including group calling, call transfer, paging, and other personal digital assistant features.

Cisco Expressway. This solution allows remote workers to connect Cisco IP phones as well as Cisco Voice applications without using VPN. This enables employees to work in any location with WAN access. Expressway functions as a secure gateway, allowing access to the voice systems from anywhere without special software on the user’s devices.

Cisco Emergency Responder. This solution allows phones to be identified with location accuracy based on their IP address. This assists 911 dispatchers, first responders, and local personnel as they attempt to quickly respond to emergency events. In addition, it allows for record keeping of calls and gives authorized personnel the ability to add notes for a specific incident as needed (Note: this ability to update records is not a replacement for proper record keeping). 

Cisco Unified Contact Center Express. This solution helps organizations deliver a connected digital experience, enabling contextual, continuous, and capability-rich journeys across time and channels. This easy-to-deploy and easy-to-use solution supports up to 400 agents. Secure and highly available, it supports powerful agent-based services and fully integrated self-service applications, including Automatic Call Distributor (ACD), Interactive Voice Response (IVR), Computer Telephony Integration (CTI), digital channels including email and chat, as well as customer experience management tools.

Cisco Finesse Desktop. This solution is a next-generation agent and supervisor desktop embedded within Cisco Contact Center Express. It includes an intuitive, easy-to-use design to help improve the performance of customer care representatives and enhance customer service.


The Sentinel team was able to implement the solution, allowing the town to utilize remote workers more efficiently as well as provide a streamlined support structure for their phone system and unified communications platform.  

About Sentinel Collaboration Solutions

Sentinel’s Collaboration offerings are designed to handle today’s complex business and IT landscape, closely engaging with your organization to develop and implement a comprehensive voice strategy suited to your company’s unique needs. Our collaborations portfolio includes:

  • Unified Communications
  • Unified Contact Center
  • Mobility Solutions
  • Conferencing Solutions
  • Video Collaboration
  • Managed Services 24x7x365 Monitoring
  • Application Security
  • Identity Access & Endpoint Security
  • Network & Perimeter Security
  • Physical Security