Innovation in Action
VERSA has designed, developed, and deployed innovative tools that enhance application performance, increase user satisfaction rates, and dramatically reduce application portfolio implementation and delivery costs.
vERL-2S – VERSA ERL to Switchport Tool
Background: A Federal customer’s implementation of Cisco Emergency Responder (CER) required identification down to the office suite level. The customer facility consists of 7 floors, 102 network closets and approximately 4,500 users. To meet the customer’s requirements, the switchport descriptions would need to contain the physical office location of each network jack.
VERSA Solution: vERL2S uses a logic-based algorithm that compares data collected from site surveys, patch maps and CDP information, and then determines accurate physical locations for each IP phone deployed throughout the building. Once the location is determined, the switchport description of the access layer switches is updated with the location-based information used to assign corresponding switch ports to Emergency Response Locations (ERLs).
Value: vERL2S significantly reduced the time to deploy E911 for the customer saving over 4000 hours of engineering time to manually complete this process, and at the same time reduced the inherent risk of human error associated with manual data gathering, assessment and manipulation.
vWebDialer – VERSA WebDialer Application (Cisco API Integration)
Background: During a Federal customer’s UC implementation, a request was made to allow an outbound call to be initiated from a customized database application used in the customer’s production environment for collecting personal data for external contacts. By allowing the customer’s operator to initiate a call directly from the application using the pre-populated contact information, not only would user productivity increase, dialing accuracy would also improve. Dialing accuracy is critical to the customer, as sensitive data is discussed and collected during these phone calls.
VERSA Solution: A custom application (vWebDialer) was created using the Cisco WebDialer API. This application allowed for an outbound call from the physical telephony device to be initiated from the customer database using the WebDialer service. The operator’s physical device was determined by querying the Call Manager for devices and extensions that were associated to the current user by utilizing the Cisco AXL API.
Value: By eliminating the operator’s need to physically dial the phone, the customer could be assured that the operator would always be calling the intended external contact. The time to place each of these outbound calls was reduced by over 50%. This time reduction added to the elimination of redialing miss-keyed numbers for the overall volume of calls made each day, equated to a significant time savings and increase to operational efficiencies for the customer.
vSurvey – VERSA Mobile Site Survey Tool
Background: During a Federal customer’s UC implementation, issues were discovered surrounding the accuracy of the agency’s Active Directory user data. It was determined that VERSA would need to gather required user data independently on all the current customer endpoints to support the UC implementation.
VERSA Solution: A mobile database application (vSurvey) was developed and published to VERSA tablets to be used by the data collection teams to accurately and quickly gather information on approximately 5,000 endpoints. The application was subsequently expanded to manage all relevant UC site survey elements such as on-site contact management, network infrastructure review, WLAN deployment preparation, VTC implementation and post-implementation user training.
Value: This application has transformed the site survey process for VERSA customers. vSurvey continues to simplify the old process of transferring handwritten user information between spreadsheets, with multiple owners and data locations, to having a centralized data repository that is updated in real-time with user-based timestamps. This improves the communication and collaboration between the survey and implementation teams; and has provided a platform to create meaningful dashboards for management updates and progress tracking.
vCC – VERSA Cluster Consolidation Tool
Background: A problem was presented while consolidating a multi-version, multi-cluster CUCM environment to a single-cluster. It was determined that the best plan of action would be to migrate one customer site at a time. This would involve exporting and importing extensive volumes of configuration data from the old clusters to the new cluster. This process created numerous potential points of failure with a significant increase to risk of the overall cluster consolidation.
VERSA Solution: A custom application was created that used a complete system export from CUCM and provided a customized export capability for facility specific data. The new streamlined and tailored facility specific import files allowed for increased efficiency and accuracy of the new cluster as each facility was migrated.
Value: The vCC Tool decreased the amount of time required to perform the CUCM data migration process manually. Each facility cutover process was reduced from an average of over 4 hours to less than 2 hours.
vDP-Con – VERSA Dial Plan Conversion Tool
Background: A VERSA customer requested an enterprise dial plan change from 5 digits to 10 digits. This presented problems with internal extensions, speed dials, and busy lamp fields on all enterprise endpoints.
VERSA Solution: vDP-Con was created to intelligently locate any 5-digit extensions for either extension (speed dials or busy lamp fields) within a specified file, and update the extension to a predetermined 10-digit format.
Value: The manual process to locate and convert all the existing 5-digit extensions would have taken thousands of hours and would have been subject to human error questioning the accuracy of the end result. vDP-Con automated this entire process exponentially reducing the time of conversion and eliminated any risk of human error.
FDA’s SIP Migration
Background: The FDA conducted an analysis of the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) costs using traditional Primary Rate ISDN (PRI) Time Division Multiplex (TDM) connectivity and compared that to costs related to using Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) Voice Over IP (VoIP) based connectivity for all for inbound and outbound calling for the White Oak campus. The savings using SIP VoIP trunks was compelling by using VoIP versus TDM and the conversion to SIP-based trunks (SIP trunking) was approved and implemented.
Versa Solution: The SIP trunking service was provided via existing Verizon MPLS connectivity into two of the FDA data centers. To ensure interoperability with the Verizon SIP trunking service Verizon required its customers to terminate SIP the trunks to a dedicated Session Border Controller (SBC) security appliance. At the time there were a number of potential SBC vendors to choose from, but Acme Packet at the time was a pioneer in this space and was considered best of breed and as such the FDA purchased their own SBC equipment and thus maintain License cost and engineering/support since.
Eliminated the dependencies of fixed installed PRI’s on campus with minimum service redundancy
All calls to any other agency on the HHS Networks contract is free.
No long Distance (LD) charges
1500 minutes for each session monthly shared per user
DID Redundancy available to FDA (for emergency)
Portal access for each DN on Verizon’s network to monitor, track, forward, etc. calls
Advance call routing features available on SIP