VOSS Solutions

VOSS-4-UC Adaptations: Phone Replacement Utility


Keith Bareham, Director Solutions Engineering, VOSS Solutions

As a solutions engineer, I work with the VOSS Adaptations team tailoring our exceptional UC management platform to suit the exact needs of our customers. You might expect that making customisations to VOSS-4-UC would be time consuming, costly, and incredibly complex. Not so. With VOSS, UC operational teams can complete their initial deployments quickly and easily, out-of-the-box, and then efficiently adapt the automation processes to the specific and evolving needs of the business without any need for re-coding.

Over a series of blog posts, I will go into detail about some of the recent adaptations I’ve carried out for our customers, to give an insight into the value of VOSS.

In the first instance, I will explain how to manage phone replacements.

You might find yourself carrying out a phone replacement project for a number of reasons. For example, recently, Cisco announced that in CUCM version 11.5(1), support would be removed for some of its older phone models; customers with these phones in operation would need to replace the handsets with newer models to maintain service. Or, a situation may arise where phones need to be replaced when users upgrade to a different phone model.

With phone replacement projects, it is usually desirable to retain the configuration from the original phone as far as possible, to retain functionality and ensure a positive end user experience. It is not viable to copy this configuration manually; particularly when many phones are being replaced, as this is likely to be slow and error prone. A method of automating the replacement of phones is required to address this need.

VOSS-4-UC Adaptations enable specific utilities and functionality to be added to VOSS-4-UC without the need for core software development.

One such VOSS Adaptation was a user-facing phone replacement utility that I created, automating the process of phone replacement while simultaneously copying the parameters from the old phone. An interactive web page was built to collect data about the replacement activity, and to provide information to the user regarding the old phone so that the user could determine that the correct replacement activity had been requested.

The utility can also be accessed via spreadsheet in the form of a bulk loader to facilitate large scale replacement activities. Furthermore, API access is provided for integration with management platforms and portals, which may be used to oversee these replacement operations.

A user interface for admin users includes the phone replacement utility:

Greyed out fields are auto-populated to provide user information, and pulldowns offer context aware selection for other fields.

Service providers can now rapidly replace phones with new models. Bulk replacements can be provided via bulk loading. Customer administrators can access this utility to manage phone replacements without requiring a service request into their provider, giving quick fulfilment of the request with no overhead on the provider.

To find out more about VOSS Adaptations, please click here