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Enhance the customer experience by blending Five9 Contact Center as a Service with CBTS enterprise voice solutions

Customers today demand faster service from companies across multiple communication channels. They expect contact centers to deliver extraordinary experiences with every interaction—but that becomes more challenging as communication technologies rapidly evolve.

Thanks to their widely recognized reliability and flexibility, cloud-based contact center solutions can help companies keep pace with these changes by equipping agents to provide stellar service across channels, leveraging advanced features and unlimited integration capabilities to stay ahead of the curve. By offering Five9 Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS), CBTS gives enterprise clients a scalable platform from which to enhance the customer experience while streamlining agent workflows.

By combining industry-leading contact center software from Five9 with trusted Cisco UCaaS solutions from CBTS, this powerful new platform empowers companies to future-proof their contact center experience for both remote agents and customers. Below are a few of the ways Five9 and CBTS are working together to expand your enterprise communication capabilities.

Delivering a seamless contact center experience

Call center agents can’t provide a streamlined customer experience if they have to toggle between multiple systems to field incoming calls, use outbound dialers, or switch from voice to other channels. The Five9 blended contact center unifies inbound and outbound calling features to bridge this gap, so agents can access multiple applications simultaneously through a single cloud-based platform.

Five 9 Hosted Call Center Solutioins

CBTS and Five9 work together to connect agents with customers across voice, e-mail, web, social, chat, and mobile. Built-in integrations and advanced API capabilities offer connectivity to critical business applications that agents use every day. Customers ultimately benefit from this seamless experience, thanks to integrations with Salesforce, Microsoft (Dynamics), NetSuite, Oracle (Service Cloud), ServiceNow, Sugar CRM, Velocify, Zendesk, and Zoho. This collaboration also includes open REST-base API functionality that integrates with existing systems, enabling higher quality service across channels.

Bundling Five9 Contact Center software with CBTS Unified Communication as a Service solutions can reduce expenses while streamlining your company’s telecom infrastructure with a single vendor. As a single solution provider, CBTS can fully customize each client’s communication capabilities, allowing you to Bring Your Own Voice (BYOV) provider or adopt a cloud-based voice solution like Hosted UC or Hosted Enterprise UC to support your agents’ PSTN calling.

Empowering call center agents anywhere

As the omni-channel contact center experience grows more complex, it can be challenging to maintain consistency and continuity. With more companies shifting toward a remote work environment, it’s even more important to equip agents with the same service capabilities regardless of where they’re geographically located. Make sure you’ve set your remote work agents up for success; learn more about remote work best practices here. 

Whether your agents work from one central office, multiple locations, or remotely from home, Five9 Contact Center and CBTS offer scalable support. The flexible cloud-based platform keeps agents connected anywhere, on any device, by providing reliable access to all the tools they need.

Five9 also offers comprehensive supervisor capabilities that let you monitor, whisper, and barge into calls from any location, so you can manage agent interactions everywhere. Plus, real-time insights and robust performance metrics help supervisors manage contact center operations at a glance.

Preparing for the future

Aging on-premises contact center solutions can’t keep pace with the rapidly changing telecommunications landscape, and limited technical capabilities can even hold companies back. By contrast, the feature-rich functionality of Five9 Contact Center as a Service from CBTS keeps enterprises nimble and poised for growth.

Read more: Now More Than Ever it is Time to Move Your Enterprise Contact Center to the Cloud

CCaaS offers flexible scalability as your contact center needs grow and change. You can simply add more agent licenses with our concurrent user-based pricing, IVR ports, and line capacity as you need it—paying only for what you use to make growth more affordable. The interfaces are intuitive and training is included so administrators can easily add and change routing strategies and IVR call flows.

Even when natural disasters, power outages, and other emergencies strike, CCaaS helps companies maintain communication without interruption to support business continuity. Together, Five9 and CBTS provide peace of mind through:

  • 24x7x365 network availability.
  • Redundant global data centers.
  • Strict end-to-end security protocols.
  • Real-time software upgrades.
  • 99.990% uptimes.

Why CBTS?

CBTS and Five9 will help you adapt quickly to the constantly changing environment and stay ahead of the competition.

  • Single account team, project management, training, and implementation.
  • Overlay hosted unified communications advanced PBX features.
  • No interruption of service, ease of migration.
  • Common calling plan and extension dial legacy systems.
  • 24x7x365 U.S.-based support.
  • Bundle integrated collaboration and unified communications solutions to reduce expenses.
  • Consolidated billing for all solutions.

As a leading Five9 Contact Center provider and integrator, CBTS offers enterprise solutions to future-proof your contact center with reliable cloud-based tools that deliver consistent, high-quality customer experiences across channels, devices, and locations. The streamlined platform enables service with more flexibility, functionality, and consistency—ultimately boosting agent productivity and customer satisfaction.

Contact us to learn more about bundling Five9 Contact Center as a Service with CBTS enterprise voice solutions to enhance your contact center experience.

Why a Distributed Antenna System is the best answer to in-building wireless dead spots

Wireless connectivity is quickly becoming the distinguishing factor between success and failure in business. If you look across the entire economic spectrum, products and services that engage customers in an intuitive and helpful manner perform much better in terms of brand awareness, loyalty, and most importantly, sales.

This same phenomenon is taking place across the building ownership and management sector, which encompasses everything from apartment complexes, office buildings/campuses, resorts, warehouses, and manufacturing facilities. The more thorough and reliable the wireless coverage within a building, the easier it is for owners to attract and retain top-paying occupants, as well as lower their own operating costs and perhaps even create new revenue streams for themselves.

Bringing dead spots back to life

Wireless signal penetration is not always easy in large buildings, however. Common materials like steel and concrete can dampen or block RF signals entirely, while even some newer construction features like LEED-certified energy efficient windows can be problematic. In many cases, Wi-Fi extenders can improve indoor dead spots, but this is a partial solution at best. Full Wi-Fi coverage can get expensive depending on the size and layout of the building, and it can still cut out in the presence of high demand—which means tenants will likely fail to connect just when they need to most.

A far more effective solution is a fiber-based private in-building wireless network, such as private LTE or a Distributed Antenna System. Private LTE is a local cellular network that features cell sites and core network servers dedicated to supporting an organization’s requirements independent of public cellular service providers. It can be the better choice when large amounts of data that are transferred can stress the public network in a given area. It can be deployed anywhere—including areas beyond the reach of public carriers—and can keep data on-site for security reasons. And private LTE can be optimized to handle traffic types with specific requirements. For example, real-time IoT applications can be guaranteed with extremely low latency for immediate response.

A Distributed Antenna System (DAS) is designed from the ground up to provide full cellular coverage throughout any building. It is also compatible with any phone model and all cellular carriers, providing a lower-cost, scalable approach to the connectivity needs of large numbers of users.

Using DAS, building owners will place themselves at the forefront of the wireless revolution, particularly as data demands increase significantly with the advent of 5G. Among the key benefits are:

  • A scalable architecture that meets dynamic data needs without having to over-provision network resources that then remain idle most of the time.
  • Access to the latest 4G and 5G services, including next-generation intelligent applications that can create new revenue streams and lower maintenance and other costs.
  • Connectivity to most 911 platforms and other emergency services.
  • Faster data throughput and more streamlined traffic management to deliver high-quality connectivity at all times.

Few building owners have the in-house skills or knowledge to deploy and maintain cutting-edge networks, of course, which is why partnering with a leader in the field is essential. CBTS has a long history of designing and engineering the latest communications technologies, and we have now turned that expertise toward private LTE and DAS. Our solution features a streamlined design capable of broad customization and easy installation. At the same time, we back it up with a full-service operations and maintenance contract, including integration with leading carrier platforms. In this way, clients can focus their efforts on improving service to their tenants and generating new revenue streams for themselves while we handle the network.

As strange as it may seem given that mobile communications have been with us for several decades, the power of this technology is still in its nascent stage. As the world becomes more connected, virtually everything around us will become dependent on access to wireless networks. Property owners and businesses in general would do well to stay ahead of the curve, and the easiest and least costly way to do that is by partnering with a seasoned technology expert who knows the ins and outs of modern networking.

Contact us for more information on how CBTS can help you implement a distributed antenna system and private in-building wireless network solution.

How CBTS is Integrating Hosted UCaaS with Microsoft Teams

As more businesses settle into long-term work-from-home environments, remote teams need more efficient ways to connect with each other and to the critical applications they use every day. Instead of patching together disjointed systems for voice solutions and cloud-based collaboration, forward-looking companies are looking to synergize and streamline their corporate telecommunications experience and employee experience.

To help businesses maximize their remote work capabilities across channels, CBTS has combined its Cisco Broadworks-powered enterprise voice solution with Microsoft Teams. Using Microsoft Direct Route as a bridge, this powerful integration unifies Microsoft Teams with the robust public branch exchange (PBX) features, flexibility, and reliability offered by CBTS.

By combining VoIP communication with collaboration into a single integrated platform, companies can offer a true Unified Communications experience and tap into their full employee potential by boosting the productivity of their remote workforce. Meanwhile, IT can now enable a fully-featured PBX solution to Microsoft Teams users and their entire organization. Here’s how Microsoft Direct Route from CBTS empowers business collaboration and continuity.

Full application integration

Microsoft Teams Voice from CBTS enables businesses to connect their organizations’ Microsoft Teams users with PBX capabilities whether that’s through hosted UCaaS or SIP trunking, giving advanced functionality at a lower cost than the competition.  CBTS enhances this solution by integrating the collaboration capabilities of Microsoft Teams and the essential business tools of Office 365 with the industry-leading enterprise voice platform Cisco Broadworks—giving clients access to all the communication features their businesses need, such as:

  • Contact center functionality.
  • AI-enabled IVR.
  • Multi-level auto attendants.
  • Advanced hunt groups.
  • Analytics and call reporting.

As a certified Microsoft Gold Partner and Cloud Service Provider, CBTS integrates these enterprise voice features and omnichannel contact center functionalities with the Microsoft Teams collaboration suite to deliver a seamless telecom experience from a single managed solution provider. This frees your IT department from having to spin up patchwork solutions or support multiple VPNs to connect remote workers to the tools they need.

Reliable remote collaboration

By offering local and remote workers secure access to all the business applications they use to do their jobs, the CBTS Microsoft PBX solution from CBTS equips employees to work anywhere from any device. The 99.999% reliability of CBTS Microsoft PBX, combined with the redundant network design of CBTS enterprise voice solutions, ensures uninterrupted call delivery and business continuity, even during emergencies and power outages.

Microsoft Direct Route enables businesses to take advantage of Microsoft Teams’ collaboration features like video conferencing and group chat, while seamlessly supporting employees’ daily workflows across Office 365 programs, third-party applications, and existing telephone systems. Using this integrated solution, companies can keep their teams connected with robust chat, voice, and video features that help employees collaborate effectively through shared files and app integration.

Engaging meeting features

Blending VoIP, dial-in audio conferencing, and HD video makes online meetings more dynamic. Microsoft Direct Route from CBTS lets your company communicate with parties around the globe by extending the collaboration capabilities of Microsoft Teams to your employees, customers, and partners.

Instantly launch online meetings with a single click and invite guests to join from any mobile device, desktop, or web browser, instead of requiring proprietary conferencing software or complicated login instructions. Facilitate real-time collaboration with screen sharing features and integrated applications that make meetings more meaningful and productive.

Benefitting the bottom line

Combining your enterprise calling plan with the powerful collaboration capabilities of Microsoft Teams enables more scalable, flexible, and reliable communications—making employees more productive whether they’re remote or on-premises—while also giving them the option to communicate however they prefer, whether that’s on a soft client, handset, or mobile device.

Deploying this unified solution can even help reduce telecom costs by leveraging your current phone systems and eliminating the need for additional network gateways, with fixed monthly expenses to help plan your IT budget without any surprises. Bringing CBTS voice solutions into the Microsoft Cloud through Direct Route delivers an average monthly savings of 30% compared to Microsoft’s calling plans—giving clients the best of both worlds without adding financial burdens. CBTS Microsoft voice solutions come with additional benefits as well:

  • Customized implementation and delivery models.
  • Robust network delivery like SD-WAN, NaaS, or OTT.
  • 99.999% service level agreements.
  • Ongoing 24x7x365 U.S. support.
  • Common enterprise dial plans.
  • Extension dial to existing PBXs. 
  • Pool long distance usage.
  • Dedicated project and account management.
  • SIP handsets are available.

With customized implementation, adoption, and ongoing support from CBTS, you can future-proof your company’s collaboration solution by integrating the best communication tools from Microsoft and Cisco from an experienced provider like CBTS.

Contact us to learn how CBTS and Microsoft Direct Route can enhance your organization’s remote collaboration, voice, and conferencing capabilities.

The key to finding the right SD-WAN provider for your organization

As cloud-based applications catch on in terms of both popularity and availability, the users who rely on them are expecting easier and more reliable access from any remote work situation they operate in.

Simultaneously, software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) technology is solidifying its place as the leading solution for deploying and managing cloud-enabled network environments. Small, medium, and enterprise-level organizations alike are seeing the value in partnering with a qualified SD-WAN provider to enhance and simplify their cloud application and managed software processes.

Identifying and selecting the right partner for your managed SD-WAN needs is no simple matter, however. It’s crucial for organizations to have an intimate knowledge of their existing network architectures in order to find the best fit for their goals.

Not every provider has the expertise to smoothly transform a legacy Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) network into a cloud-powered hybrid or SD-WAN architecture, regardless of the industry or vertical the client occupies. This requires a provider to work closely with the client’s IT teams to identify vulnerabilities, map out the existing network environment, and meticulously plot out a transition plan.

The right SD-WAN partner must also bring a critical eye and modern approach to your organization’s security situation. When designing and deploying an SD-WAN environment for your enterprise, solutions like Check Point CloudGuard should be layered throughout the architecture of the managed service. In short, your SD-WAN provider should fully and comprehensively assess your existing network to not only optimize bandwidth but to safeguard data and applications as well, counseling you on where to layer on additional security measures when needed.

Additionally, a managed SD-WAN solution provider should offer a suite of services that achieve the end goal of freeing up your IT personnel and resources to focus less on mundane daily tasks and more on critical strategic business initiatives. A properly implemented SD-WAN environment can achieve this, but only if the provider works alongside your team throughout the entire deployment process by monitoring, maintaining, and updating the environment as necessary to ensure a smooth transition.

It’s a common misconception that after migrating to a Software as a Service (SaaS) SD-WAN model, organizations lose direct control over their network. This isn’t the case for experienced and proven SD-WAN providers, which partner closely with clients to co-manage the new network environment. In this manner, a truly collaborative SD-WAN solution combines the strengths and expertise of both client and provider to achieve the client’s long-term goals.

Contrary to some popular perceptions, SD-WAN is not a magic button that solves every networking difficulty with the press of a button, even when users are extensively trained and experienced in the operation of SD-WAN networking solutions. That’s why a qualified and trusted partner is so important to effect an orderly migration from legacy MPLS networking to a cloud-enabled SD-WAN environment while giving your organization a greater degree of flexibility and control over your network.

That’s where CBTS comes in. Whether your strategic goal is to cut down on operating expenses or greatly increase application uptime, CBTS will synergize with your IT infrastructure to formulate a customized SD-WAN solution that is tailor-made for your specific circumstances and needs. CBTS can also easily factor in and balance additional features like Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) as needed.

SD-WAN is defining both the present and future of enterprise networking and is creating exciting new opportunities, but it takes an expert guide to navigate these turbulent waters safely. Choose your partner carefully to get the most out of this cutting-edge technology.

Contact us for more information on finding the right SD-WAN provider for your organization.

How NaaS is putting the cloud within reach for every enterprise

Legacy networks, and the businesses that rely on them, are running out of juice. For the most part, these outdated network environments are simply not equipped to meet the high demand that exists today for reliable, full-spectrum communication capabilities. The spike in remote work situations during the COVID-19 pandemic has only intensified the demand for modern networking technology that enables seamless and user-friendly collaboration.

Network as a Service (NaaS) has emerged as a transformative solution to the flagging effectiveness of most legacy networks. NaaS works by leveraging the programming and connectivity power of the cloud to provide managed, cloud-based networking capabilities as a comprehensive service and a simple transport method.

Joe Putnik, chief innovation officer at CBTS, recently sat down with CIO Review to discuss new advances and developments in NaaS, which won CIO Review’s Product of the Year award.

When combined with other revolutionary solutions such as Software-Defined Wide Area Networks (SD-WAN) and Hosted Unified Communications (UC) and implemented by a trusted vending partner, NaaS is capable of completely reinventing any enterprise’s networking architecture. Indeed, reinvention is crucial at a time when organizations are settling into a semi-permanent state of remote operation in the face of the COVID crisis.

However, networking solutions are only effective when enabled by the correct hardware. That’s where Cisco Meraki comes in. A collection of scalable and secure network platforms for the future-focused enterprise, Meraki offers intuitive cloud integration, auto-provisioning, VPN, and other valuable capabilities. As an experienced partner for enterprise-level organizations as well as small- and medium-sized businesses, CBTS pairs the Cisco Meraki platform with its array of managed SD-WAN, Hosted UC, and NaaS services to deliver unparalleled results for clients.

CBTS has implemented its NaaS for more than 600 clients and more than 5,000 locations since it began offering the solution in 2016 and has achieved this milestone by partnering with other leaders in the market, including Cisco and Dell/VMware. CBTS is able to deploy solutions from these partner firms over any transport, from Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) to 4G LTE. This flexibility makes CBTS an attractive provider for organizations of any size that are seeking a future-ready network architecture.

The CBTS NaaS solution arose from a need for a fully-managed, streamlined, and holistic approach to secure connectivity. Customers in multiple industries were seeking a method to address both their Wi-Fi and firewall concerns, which NaaS is purpose-built to solve. NaaS is also designed to be easily scaled for growth, a major benefit for small and midsize businesses (SMBs), especially those with a need to expand their networks to multiple locations or facilities.

From day one, the NaaS approach has been driven by the goal to simplify the lives and day-to-day processes of every client, regardless of the vertical they occupied or the size of their business. However, implementing a solution is only part of the equation. To ensure success for their clients, CBTS takes the initiative to establish a monitoring environment that allows for continuous system auditing, patching, and improvements to deliver the best experience possible for the client. CBTS accomplishes this by partnering with software company ServiceNow and creating automated monitoring processes that help clients proactively maintain their network environments and databases in the long term.

Commitment, flexibility, and collaboration are the keystones of the NaaS service that CBTS employs for all of its clients. By utilizing the latest technology available and anticipating the needs of its customers, CBTS stays ahead of the curve and consistently delivers intuitive, effective, and future-forward managed solutions for organizations of every size.

Contact us for more information on how CBTS can enable your network infrastructure to be smarter and simpler.

Expert breakdown webcast series: Microsoft Teams in the Big Picture

Team collaboration is evolving quickly as companies strive to maintain smooth operations and meaningful interactions, whether working from home or utilizing traditional office environments.

Service providers, master agents, partners, and customers alike are exploring new tools and channel options with a multitude of questions about the future of communication. To tackle these questions and help you navigate the solutions, CBTS will host a three-part webcast series during which our experts will break down Microsoft Teams in the Big Picture.

Through three engaging discussions, this series will explore the most pressing issues and opportunities surrounding collaboration tools today. Below is an overview of what we’ll cover.

Webcast Series 3.1: Comparing collaboration platforms

In the first installment of this webcast series, the team of CBTS experts will compare major collaboration platforms including Cisco Webex Teams and Microsoft Teams. By examining the benefits and downsides of each platform, this webcast will explore how different collaboration tools integrate with Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) to provide a seamless experience from the desktop to the cloud.

The first webcast will feature insights from CBTS experts including Justin Rice, Senior Solutions Architect; Matt Douglass, Senior Director of Solution Engineering; and Alex Broome, Senior Sales Engineer.

Secure your spot now for this webcast, scheduled for Wednesday, September 16, at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
Sign up here

Webcast Series 3.2: Taking a technical deep dive

In the second session of this Expert Breakdown series, we’ll take a technical deep dive into Cisco Webex Teams, Microsoft Teams Direct Routing, and UCaaS.

We’ll evaluate how Direct Routing connects Microsoft Teams to SIP trunks and third-party voice applications. Then, we’ll highlight the game-changing advantages of combining the Cisco Webex Teams toolset with Cisco UCaaS integrations from CBTS.

Join our duo of technical experts—Chris Pope, Director of Solution Design, and Matt Douglass, Senior Director of Solution Engineering—to take a closer look at these integration issues.

Reserve your virtual seat today for this webcast, scheduled for Wednesday, September 23, at 1:30 p.m. EDT.
Register here

Webcast Series 3.3: Exploring work-from-home collaboration

The final webcast of the series will explore how companies can use remote collaboration tools to excel in today’s new work-from-home environment. Through a live panel discussion moderated by CBTS Channel Chief Rob Messmer, several cloud experts will analyze how collaboration tools like UCaaS and SD-WAN can elevate remote work productivity like never before.

A panel of experts—featuring Cisco Cloud Calling Specialist Bryan Wilson, Director of Cloud Networking Jon Lloyd, and Senior Director of Solution Engineering Matt Douglass—will confront the biggest questions, challenges, and opportunities surrounding remote collaboration. By the end of the conversation, your business will be better equipped to make the most of working from home.

Tune in to participate in the live Q&A, scheduled for Wednesday, September 30 at 1 p.m. EDT.
Reserve your spot here

Navigating all the different platforms and potential pitfalls of today’s rapidly shifting communications experience can be a challenge, whether you have sophisticated IT resources or a one-person IT department. That’s why CBTS designed this new webcast series to explore Microsoft Teams in the Big Picture and guide companies through the maze of collaboration tools impacting operations in every industry.

Join our three-part webcast series to find answers to your biggest collaboration questions.

Register for Webcast Series 3.1

Register for Webcast Series 3.2

Register for Webcast Series 3.3

Revamping an outdated network with SD-WAN and NaaS

Growth, and having a plan to achieve it, is critical for any enterprise. However, growing your business is difficult when aging technology, an outdated network, and thinly-stretched IT resources are holding you back.

The Kleingers Group, a civil engineering, transportation, land surveying, and landscape architecture firm with approximately 120 employees and offices in Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, and Louisville, had a similar issue.

The company contended with various IT challenges and had precious few qualified employees to do so. Instead of focusing on the core strategic initiatives needed to drive the company’s bottom line, these specialists were instead bogged down by the many tasks involved with managing an outdated network and aging telecom system, resulting in frequent downtime.

This outdated network had been assembled out of equipment from multiple vendors, creating a cluttered and chaotic environment for the IT staff to navigate. Additionally, the client’s phone system originated from a vendor that had gone out of business, making replacements or repairs needlessly expensive and time-consuming.

Employees in the client’s Cincinnati, Dayton, and Chicago offices were also collaborating through expensive equipment that was managed through a separate vendor. This sprawling web of vendor relationships, paired with the obsolete and costly nature of much of the technology itself, led to severe difficulty in daily operations. A fourth office, which was preparing to open in Louisville, required a more streamlined and comprehensive connectivity solution that was scalable and more suited for the growth that The Kleingers Group was planning.

The Kleingers Group sought help from communication provider Parallel Technologies, Inc., a member of the CBTS Partner Channel, to assess The Kleingers Group’s network environment and formulate a solution.

A full-spectrum audit of The Kleingers Group’s telecom and network environment was launched with the intent to identify opportunities to remake the client’s IT infrastructure from the ground up. Throughout this process, experts from CBTS and Parallel worked closely with the client to plan the implementation of new tools and solutions, including a new cloud-based network and voice service.

“Parallel and CBTS came into our organization two years ago and were critical to helping us achieve our business goals. They understood the technology needs that Kleingers had in order to grow and proposed a strategy to move us forward. They worked with The Kleingers Group’s IT staff to find a solution that would fit our business needs and facilitate future growth.” —Mike Pillman, Systems Administrator, The Kleingers Group

CBTS launched a Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) solution that could seamlessly integrate the client’s branches with a single pane of glass management console to simplify operations. CBTS also provided the Software-Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) necessary to support reliable connections between all four Kleingers locations, with no third party needed to manage the branch network.

Additionally, Parallel installed a Mitel MiVoice Connect voice solution that would operate in concert with the CBTS NaaS and SD-WAN solutions. This added functionality was intended to empower The Kleingers Group’s growth and expansion strategy.

When all solutions were put into place by CBTS and Parallel, the client had at its disposal a reinvented and reinvigorated network that was capable of supporting its multiple branches and ambitious growth strategy. The Kleingers Group also had the benefit of full transparency into the performance of this new network thanks to the management tools provided by the customized SD-WAN and NaaS solutions.

The close partnership of Parallel’s IT support staff—which oversees the client’s new network and voice system—frees up resources for Kleingers, allowing its own personnel to concentrate their attention from an outdated network to more mission-critical strategic initiatives.

Contact CBTS for more information on how a managed NaaS and SD-WAN solution can help your organization achieve its strategic goals.

Download the full case study to learn more about how CBTS and Parallel Technologies created a comprehensive, cloud-enabled networking solution that revamped The Kleingers Group’s outdated network with SD-WAN and NaaS.

A Q&A on VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud

CBTS recently put together a three-part webcast series centered on VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud. The panel, moderated by Channel Chief Rob Messmer, features VP & CTO-SD-WAN at VMware Craig Connors, CBTS Director of Cloud Networking Jon Lloyd, and CBTS Senior Director of Solution Engineering Matt Douglass. The three-part webcast series breaks down the top questions about VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud.

What is the story behind VeloCloud?

“I’ve been in the WAN space since 2007. When I joined the founding engineering team at Talari Networks, it was the first time we looked at what MPLS was doing and asked if we can do it across the public internet. I joined VeloCloud in 2013, and in 2018 the cloud began to become part of our daily lives, and the idea of keeping the cloud a cohesive part of network infrastructure was really innovative and forward-looking.” – Craig Connors, VP & CTO-SD-WAN at VMware

What are the core differentiators for VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud?

“There are two major differentiators: 1) Gateways that serve as a direct on-ramp to SaaS. We can build an overlay using one or more links from your end location to gateways and not just steer around problems that happen, like a lot of SD-WANs do, but we can mitigate problems such as jitter and packet loss. Even with a single link, with  packet loss, you can still get high-quality business connectivity, even for applications living in the cloud.

“And, 2) Dynamic Multipath Optimization with (a) Continuous Link Monitoring, (b) Dynamic Per Packet Steering, and (c) On-Demand Remediation. Everything we do—measurement-wise, error correction-wise, traffic steering-wise—is unidirectional. We’re measuring upstream and downstream independently. Per-packet steering allows us to move traffic at any time to link in a sub-second fashion.” – Craig Connors, VP & CTO-SD-WAN at VMware

How does CBTS communicate all of the value and technology behind VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud to its channel partner agent resellers?

“When a customer says, ‘Help me understand that this is not marketecture and that it’s architecture,’ we can show you the traffic, show you moving it…we can show you the results of tests we did back in 2016. For us, the proof is in what we do today, especially now with remote work.” – Jon Lloyd, CBTS Director of Cloud Networking

How does VeloCloud view next-generation security features like UTM, malware protection, etc.?

“There are two sides to the question, and the first one is SASE (secure access service edge). When you look at SASE, you get a consolidation of cloud firewalling, secure web gateways, ZTNA, and SD-WAN. On the other side, SASE is all about market consolidation and a single vendor—a single pane of glass network simplification. We’re able to facilitate security in a flexible way, working with any vendor a customer may prefer.” – Craig Connors, VP & CTO-SD-WAN at VMware

How does CBTS bring Check Point CloudGuard Connect into the SD-WAN story?

“What we wanted to do with Check Point CloudGuard Connect and with the Check Point suite was complement what we’ve already been doing for customers for five years with the VMware SD-WAN platform. Some customers are going to want this, and some are going to want that, and our job is to be able to make sure we’re delivering with an easy-to-consume wrapper.” – Jon Lloyd, CBTS Director of Cloud Networking

What are some important aspects for customers to know about the SASE market?

“I think the important thing for customers to remember is SASE is big in the hype cycle right now. There’s a lot of companies rushing to try to ride that wave of hype. And one thing you’ll never hear me say is “good enough security.” That’s a term that people throw around. And I think something that we take seriously at VMware is we’re the leader in SD-WAN Workspace ONE, tens of millions of devices under management. We believe that’s a best-in-breed solution for UEM for ZTNA, bringing those together.” – Craig Connors, VP & CTO-SD-WAN at VMware  

How does VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud and Check Point fit into the customer’s journey to the cloud?

“This is a unique time for us in the channel to talk about business outcomes and building outcome-based networks for customers. One of the things that my sales engineering team has been most excited about is that these tools—VeloCloud, Check Point, all the things we’re talking about—allow us really to be meeting with customers and start talking about business outcomes.

“We actually will write on a whiteboard that we build what we believe is outcome-based networking. And so, a lot of our work is sitting with the customer and saying, okay, what are your applications that are going site to site? That are going site to data center, site to SaaS application, site to AWS or Azure? There is now this work-from-home component. How do we layer in the right security solutions? Because VeloCloud, Check Point, and CBTS are positioned as a managed service provider, it really allows us to build very customer-specific solutions.” – Matt Douglas, Senior Director of Solution Engineering

What are the industries that you are surprised about adopting cloud technologies like VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud?

“Retail, banking, sports stadiums, and healthcare are all taking advantage.” – Craig Connors, VP & CTO-SD-WAN at VMware

How does CBTS, as a service provider, keep pace with what key partners like VMware and VeloCloud are doing in the market?

“It starts with a great partnership and understanding of where VMware is going. There’s an open flow of communication and knowing ahead of time what will be rolling out so we can be prepared.” – Jon Lloyd, CBTS Director of Cloud Networking

Visit Expert Breakdown: VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud Series 2.1-2.3 Webcast Replay for a full recap and to view all webcasts in the series.

Download our SD-WAN CIO Tools to learn how integrating SD-WAN into your infrastructure can deliver better performance and outcomes for your organization.

VMware SD-WAN powered by VeloCloud

VMware SD-WAN powered by VeloCloud provides limitless and optimized access across the entire enterprise organization for cloud applications and services while simplifying implementations and centrally managing all network activity. Using a flexible, agile, and scalable delivery model, VeloCloud is the only SD-WAN solution fully able to leverage all the benefits of the cloud.

CBTS

CBTS is a leading technology provider to enterprises in all industries, including dozens of Fortune 500 and Global 2000 companies. What sets us apart is the agility, flexible delivery models, and client focus of a smaller company coupled with the ability to deliver the resources, scale, and capabilities required by large organizations. Ask how CBTS can help you capitalize on the cloud today.

Contact us for more information on how CBTS can implement state-of-the-art SD-WAN solutions for your organization.

How SD-WAN is revolutionizing hybrid networks for the cloud era

For IT service providers and the enterprises they support, Software-Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) technology is quickly establishing itself as a revolutionary concept and a valuable tool for organizations hoping to thrive in the age of cloud computing.

The value of SD-WAN technology is projected by the International Data Corporation to reach $8 billion in 2021. This strong rate of growth indicates the volume of organizations turning to SD-WAN solutions to prepare their networks for the cloud era, regardless of the industry vertical they occupy.

Through SD-WAN, small-to-midsize businesses and international enterprises alike can gain the tools to develop, deploy, monitor, and manage their own cloud-delivered private, public, and hybrid wireless networks. Unprecedented levels of network visibility and control are also possible through SD-WAN, making it easier than ever before for users to completely transform their IT infrastructures for peak performance.

Specifically, VMware SD-WAN powered by VeloCloud offers a wide range of functions, including dynamic packet routing, simplified deployment, and the convenient Orchestrator management tool. This variety of tools enables users to measure the quality of their connections, efficiently route traffic, and address impediments across multiple network pathways, whether they’re managing branch offices or traditional data centers.

With cloud-capable solutions like SD-WAN growing more available, levels of network transformation that were only dreamt of a few years ago are within reach. This technological leap forward is very timely, given the recent explosion in demand for secure and reliable remote office collaboration capabilities. By some estimates, traffic between branch office networks is doubling every three years—indicating that the time has never been more right to buy into the SD-WAN revolution.

A hybrid networking strategy provided by cloud-enabled SD-WAN can also mean significant savings over more traditional multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) architectures. By dropping MPLS, adopting SD-WAN, and embracing broadband and 4G LTE as a backup, several major retailers are seeing savings of up to 40 percent on networking costs. Shifting to a versatile, hybrid network can also cut expenses in the long run by addressing future needs ahead of time. Additionally, SD-WAN’s ease of deployment can cut down on costly downtime.

However, before making moves to adopt SD-WAN and all the advances that come with it, enterprises must carefully research and assess the various providers offering SD-WAN solutions. An ideal partner should be capable of providing a full-spectrum cloud-delivered SD-WAN environment that interfaces with any cloud service, any network transport, and any vendor. VeloCloud is one such provider, offering a versatile cloud architecture that comes complete with controllers, gateways, edges, and the Orchestrator management tool.

To date, VMware SD-WAN powered by VeloCloud has provided high-end network solutions for more than 1,000 customers and 50,000 sites. The company prides itself on its ability to launch and stand up its proprietary SD-WAN instance in less than 30 days, delivering fast results for the client.

Change can make enterprise leaders nervous, and that’s understandable. Many organizations with entrenched MPLS network environments are hesitant to move away from them because of long-standing relationships with trusted vendors. That’s where SD-WAN comes in to serve as a hybrid network solution. By implementing SD-WAN as a streamlining influence, various transports such as 4G wireless, cable, and broadband can come together with legacy MPLS to create flexibility and versatility where there might otherwise be utter chaos.

Download our SD-WAN CIO Tools to learn how integrating SD-WAN into your infrastructure can deliver better performance and outcomes for your organization.

VMware SD-WAN powered by VeloCloud

VMware SD-WAN powered by VeloCloud provides limitless and optimized access across the entire enterprise organization for cloud applications and services while simplifying implementations and centrally managing all network activity. Using a flexible, agile, and scalable delivery model, VeloCloud is the only SD-WAN solution fully able to leverage all the benefits of the cloud.

CBTS

CBTS is a leading technology provider to enterprises in all industries, including dozens of Fortune 500 and Global 2000 companies. What sets us apart is the agility, flexible delivery models, and client focus of a smaller company coupled with the ability to deliver the resources, scale, and capabilities required by large organizations. Ask how CBTS can help you capitalize on the cloud today.

Contact us for more information on how CBTS can help transform your organization’s network environment with a customized SD-WAN solution.

Improving the remote collaboration experience

When COVID-19 made working from home mandatory, many companies struggled to bring corporate communication tools into remote work environments. Webcams and headsets quickly became the new norm as home-based employees tried to keep noisy kids from disrupting their video conferences.

When CBTS began working from home in March, we started to explore how to collaborate more effectively to enhance the experience of working remotely.  We were used to face-to-face communication, so we wanted to recreate that environment at home.

Now, as businesses move from pandemic mode to long-term planning, executives expect higher quality, fewer distractions, and easier integration as they prepare employees for long-term remote productivity. In fact, according to a recent Gartner survey, nearly three-fourths of CFOs plan to move 5% of their on-site workforce to remote positions, and a quarter of them plan to make at least 20% of positions permanently remote post-COVID.

To make this shift successful, businesses must examine and enhance their remote meeting experience by equipping employees with intuitive collaboration tools that turn any home office into a professional conference room.

The new normal

Even in this age of high-tech communication, many meetings still require face-to-face interaction. When global pandemics or scheduling logistics prevent physical meetings, workers in every industry need reliable tools to collaborate from separate locations.

For example:

  • Executives sharing financial reports with investors.
  • Employees huddling together to plan tasks.
  • Engineers collaborating to design new prototypes.
  • Sales reps presenting products to prospective customers.
  • Support teams troubleshooting issues with clients.

As vital as it is to facilitate interaction between remote workers internally, it’s even more critical that companies offer clients and prospects a platform for interaction outside of the conference room. Providing an enhanced collaboration experience can exert credibility and professionalism.

Under pressure to manage costs more tightly, business leaders are realizing that remote collaboration tools can actually save them money. Not only do virtual meetings reduce the need to travel (and the related expenses incurred on business trips), but they also produce significant real estate savings, since physical office space is no longer required for face-to-face communication.

According to the Gartner survey, 22% of businesses have reduced real estate expenses (or plan to) because of remote work. Similarly, 20% of respondents have deferred on-premises technology spending, with many issuing work-from-home equipment instead.

New solutions for remote collaboration

To deliver a secure, streamlined collaboration experience that engages employees and clients, CBTS offers a state-of-the-art solution through the Secure Remote Collaboration portfolio. Custom-designed for the huddle workstyle, The Secure Remote Collaboration portfolio includes robust endpoint options such as the Cisco Webex Room Kit Mini, as well as the Cisco Webex Desk Pro. These all-in-one collaboration tools offer features such as cameras and microphones that can be easily mounted on any monitor.

As entire industries shift toward virtual meetings, the Secure Remote Collaboration portfolio provides four key features that foster enhanced collaboration

Smart meetings

The camera’s “best overview” feature automatically detects meeting participants to provide ideal framing. Meanwhile, automatic noise suppression minimizes distractions by reducing background sounds like rustling papers or children yelling in the next room.

“One Button to Push” functionality makes it easy for participants to join scheduled meetings withno more clicking around, trying to find the meeting link. Although the process of joining meetings is simplified, end-to-end security prevents uninvited guests from entering.

Smart presentations

Wired and wireless content sharing elevates the virtual experience by allowing groups to view and annotate whiteboard presentations through the Cisco Webex Teams app.

Smart rooms

By combining high-definition audio and video, the collaboration portfolio improves interactions with intelligent collaboration tools typical of much larger systems. The camera even counts participants, enabling utilization analytics and insights to guide future resource planning.

Flexible integrations

With its seamless integration of Cisco Webex software, the portfolio delivers continuous workflow by registering either on-premises or to the cloud. Plus, interoperability with any cloud-based video conferencing provider gives users the flexibility to leverage the same sleek functionality whether they’re joining Webex conferences, Zoom meetings, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, or any other platform.

By empowering people to meet instantly and securely via any device in any location, this Cisco Webex solution from CBTS enhances remote collaboration anywhere—helping businesses minimize wasted time and expense while maximizing the remote work experience for customer-facing employees.

Learn more about the Secure Remote Collaboration portfolio’s features that designed to streamline remote communication.

Contact us today to get your first month’s subscription to Webex FREE when you deploy the Secure Remote Collaboration portfolio for your remote workforce.