How A Unified Communications Platform Increased Productivity For North Hertfordshire College


When integrating a new communications infrastructure there are often a number of factors to consider. Establishing the best fit for your school or college is a process that can be made significantly easier – and more cost effective – by using a Microsoft partner to worth with you on delivering a bespoke unified communications solution.

NHC logo outlined

North Hertfordshire College needed to move from its existing setup that was costing too much (with further potential upgrade costs), to an alternative solution capable of supporting 1,000 employees, including telephony roll-out to around 300 users. Following a successful 12 month trial of Microsoft Lync 2010, and the fact that Microsoft offer significant discounts to educational facilities, the decision was soon made to adopt the unified communication platform across the entire network.

Working with Microsoft partner Risual, NHC were able to deploy Microsoft Lync 2013 via a staged roll-out that fit in with time and logistical constraints faced by the college. Matt Greening, Head of ICT, spoke of the North Hertfordshire College’s requirements:

“A core deliverable for us was to exit from the high costs of the Cisco voice platform and its associated upgrade costs, especially in the current economic climate… The process that Risual took us through meant that we were able to successfully integrate with our existing IT infrastructure, using industry standard software and hardware.”

Not only was the transition from the incumbent communication system over to Microsoft Lync an operational and economic success, but the additional features and functionality afforded by the new system has had an overwhelmingly positive effect on collaboration and productivity at NHC

Assessing the project as a whole, five key areas of noticeable improvement were identified by the college:

· Reduced Costs

· Reporting

· Unified Platform

· Improved Communication

· Increased Productivity

Matt Greening’s praise for both the integration solution and the end product itself continued:

“We’ve seen an increased interaction between staff across our sites without a corresponding increase in travel. Our users can adopt easier and more flexible ways of working and it has enhanced their mobility. From an IT perspective, Risual has ensured that we have the ability and agility for future estate changes and well as reducing on-going maintenance costs and communication costs. We also have few vendors to manage which makes our lives easier too.”

To discover how Microsoft Lync can improve productivity and communications within your educational facility download your free trial here.


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