VOSS-4-UC Adaptations: Linked Sites
Keith Bareham, Director Solutions Engineering, VOSS Solutions
VOSS-4-UC enables customers to create multiple sites; either directly under a customer, or within an organisational structure under an intermediate node. This blog post looks at how to cluster sites within an organisational structure, in order to share resources.
Within VOSS-4-UC, sites are created using dial plans that are based on site codes. In this methodology, each site is allocated a unique site code within a customer. Options exist within the dial plan regarding the use of inter-site prefixes and site prefixes, but the general behaviour for users within a site is as follows:
- Calling within a site requires the user to dial the extension number only
- Calling to another site requires the user to dial the site code plus the extension at the destination site
In this way, users can dial a local extension number which may overlap with an extension number at a remote site, with no possibility of ambiguity.
Some organisations wish to group a number of sites so that they share the same site code. This allows simplified extension-only dialling within the group of sites. However, by design, VOSS-4-UC enforces the designation of a site code per site.
A VOSS-4-UC Adaptation has been created, without the need for core software development. The adaptation addresses the concept of a linked site. A linked site allows a site code to be shared with a parent site. There can be many linked sites under a single parent, and many parent sites can be configured to create multiple linked site groups. This allows for the creation of multiple groups of sites, each group having extension-only dialling anywhere within the group and site-code dialling to other sites or other linked site groups.
Linked site groups as depicted above can be deployed alongside standard sites which are created as usual with a single site code, allowing full interworking between the site types. In the linked site groups, users and devices are configured at the linked site hierarchy using the usual methods such as Quick Add Subscriber. Resources such as hunt groups are configured at the site hierarchy allowing the resource to be available for all linked sites under the site hierarchy.
Creating a new linked site is similar to creating a new site. A GUI page collects the new linked site information:
The new site is built under an existing standard site, and automatically adopts the dial plan configuration from the parent site. Values that are specific to the linked site - such as the area code and published number - are collected in the new GUI page.
Service providers can now offer end user functionality which is more aligned with the behaviour familiar to end users who have experience of using networked PBXs, and therefore a consolidated dial plan. The service provider is now able to link various "islands" of networked PBXs into a rationalised centrally managed numbering plan, making migration from older PBX technologies an easier experience for administrators.
This adaptation has been particularly interesting to large public sector organisations, who seek the efficiency of a fully connected and centrally managed unified communications platform.
Find out more about VOSS-4-UC Adaptations here.