Tone Software Reveals Holistic Management Approach as Key to Leveraging Maximum VoIP Performance in Complex Converged Environments
March 01, 2011
By Charles West
, TMCnet Web Editor
Networks are the backbone and Achilles heel for VoIP communications, presenting a challenging set of circumstances. The core issue is data versus voice. Data traversing today’s networks are forgiving of such things as latency, delay and packet loss. Not so with voice. Voice requires clear, noiseless call quality without interruption or interference, and these same common network conditions can seriously degrade VoIP quality and performance.
More and more businesses are relying on VoIP based technologies to fuel work group collaboration and drive advanced business processes – with the expectation of reducing costs, increasing productivity and gaining significant ROI. The promise of VoIP is very attractive – but quickly erodes if no one can hear you. High availability and near flawless call quality to both internal and external users are requirements of businesses implementing IP telephony. Poor call quality negatively impacts both employees and customers - and is often difficult to overcome.
Tone Software, an established provider of management and monitoring solutions for converged communications, believes the strategy for success is a holistic approach that enables the interdependence of voice and the network to be viewed and managed as a whole. Diagnosing VoIP issues can be a moving target.
For instance, call servers are often at the top of the suspect list when trying to get to the root of frustrating VoIP quality and service issues, but frequently the perpetrator can be found in the complex underlying network infrastructure. Capacity and network traffic levels occurring at the time of voice degradation are frequently the culprit - but without the tools to pinpoint these conditions, support teams waste valuable time and resources chasing after the wrong quality issue – leaving the true cause of the problem undiagnosed and unresolved.
Discussing the importance of networks for VoIP communications, Amit Kapoor, director of strategic technology advancement for Tone said, “Poor voice quality, greater network latency and diminished service levels can seriously jeopardize your desired VoIP benefits and ROI.”
“When it comes to voice and data, you could say it comes down to -- united we stand, divided we fall. In order to deliver on the promise of VoIP, a holistic management scheme must be implemented to provide end-to-end visibility and control over both the voice and network domains that define VoIP,” he added.
Reflecting on what companies are doing to establish and execute successful VoIP QoS management in a converged environment, Tone sees three steps in common:
- First, implementing a management strategy where both network and voice teams have insight into the impact of their actions, while working together to achieve optimum VoIP communications. Essentially, end-to-end visibility and control over both the voice and network domains that comprise VoIP.
- Next, those successful in leveraging maximum benefits from VoIP are utilizing deep VoIP QoS metrics to rapidly find and resolve the correct quality imparing voice issues. Such analytics are combined with network performance metrics so voice technicians can relate quality problems to other relevant network performance events, faults and issues occurring and contributing to voice quality degradation.
- In an environment where the only constant is change, proactive monitoring and management of voice traffic levels, new applications, network configuration changes and the like, is the third step to achieving VoIP quality.
By taking these steps, telecommunications and IT managers are efficiently and effectively addressing the frustrating VoIP quality issues plaguing their converged voice environments – once and for all.
Tone’s ReliaTel is at the forefront of providing the tools that ensure VoIP quality in a converged network solution which allows enterprises and managed service providers (MSPs) to proactively manage both VoIP call quality and the underlying converged network infrastructure in a holistic manner.Charles West is a Web Editor for TMCnet. Prior to joining TMC (News - Alert) Charles worked with many gadget oriented sites that included running his own blog (TheTrendaholic.com) and Smartphone column for examiner.com. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Charles West