4-page Case Study
Posted: 4/19/2011
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Boeing Boeing Promotes Knowledge Sharing for Global Workforce with Communications Solution

The Boeing Company is the world’s leading aerospace company and the largest manufacturer of commercial jetliners and military aircraft. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Boeing employs more than 158,000 people in 70 countries. Boeing’s global teams depend on effective communication to build some of the world’s most complex products. To provide communications capabilities to help global teams and mobile workers collaborate better, Boeing deployed Microsoft Lync Server 2010. Boeing’s employees are taking advantage of the instant messaging, ad hoc conferencing, and voice capabilities to improve knowledge sharing and avoid conferencing costs.

Situation
The Boeing Company has a long tradition of aerospace leadership and innovation. In addition to being the world’s leading manufacturer of jetliners and military aircraft, the company designs and manufactures rotocraft, electronic and defense systems, missiles, satellites, launch vehicles, and advanced information and communication systems. Boeing operates the Space Shuttle and International Space Station.

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* Regardless of where they are located, employees can use the method of communication that makes the most sense. And if that changes during the communication, they can adjust instantly with Lync. *

Tom Kletke
Senior Manager, Boeing

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Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Boeing employs more than 158,000 people in 70 countries. Its employees depend on communication solutions as they design and build some of the most complex products in the world. “We have global teams,” says Tom Kletke, Senior Manager for Messaging and Infrastructure Services at Boeing. “Engineers frequently are separated by thousands of miles and multiple time zones. In order to get an answer to a question about a part on a new commercial airliner, for example, an engineer has to find the right person, contact them to explain the issue, and capture that person’s knowledge.”

Employees resolve many questions through instant messaging (IM), which Boeing deployed years ago. However, more complex issues require a voice conversation or desktop sharing so people can explain issues more clearly. The voice and conferencing products used at Boeing worked well alone, but they did not always work well together and represented a significant cost with more than 100,000 people using them. Boeing also wanted to provide employees with additional options for quickly sharing their desktops or initiating voice conversations.

To better serve the many employees who travel or work remotely much of the time, Boeing also investigated enterprise voice solutions. After comparing products from many vendors, Boeing deployed Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 R2 to take advantage of the instant messaging, presence, and conferencing and voice capabilities provided. It deployed the instant messaging, conferencing, and desktop sharing to all 158,000 employees. The company also deployed the enterprise voice and Exchange Server 2010 Unified Messaging voice mail capabilities for 2,000 employees. The deployment of Office Communications Server 2007 R2 was successful, and the Microsoft solution proved to be a popular alternative to the existing communications services. Based on that success, the company decided to upgrade to Microsoft Lync Server 2010, which includes enhancements to the core capabilities of Office Communications Server 2007 R2.

Solution
In October 2010, Boeing began deploying Microsoft Lync Server 2010, and it expects to deploy the Microsoft Lync 2010 client to all 158,000 employees by June 2011 so that employees can take advantage of enhancements to presence, desktop sharing, and ad hoc collaboration and online meeting capabilities. Boeing also expects to expand the deployment of Lync Server 2010 to provide enterprise voice to 15,000 employees by December 2011.

Boeing will deploy voice capabilities in Lync 2010 as an alternative to desk phones. Employees will primarily use headsets with softphone capabilities. Many employees are currently evaluating headsets that give them the ability to control both Lync calls and their mobile phone calls from the same headset. “Employees, especially those who travel, like the flexibility of the softphone with a headset,” says Dean Sepstrup, Product Manager for Exchange and IM Services at Boeing. “The phone travels with you. Your phone calls will go to the device you specify, even when the computer is turned off. Your phone number won’t change when you switch locations or move offices.” Boeing has also provided some IP phones to employees who do not travel.

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* Lync fits into our existing environment. With Lync, you don't have to ‘rip and replace.’ You can build the service on top of what already exists. We did not have to tear anything out or bear additional costs. *

Tom Kletke
Senior Manager, Boeing

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Lync capabilities will be available to all Boeing employees in mid-2011. The new dial pad looks more like a phone, so employees will find it more intuitive. During calls, employees receive feedback on issues with network connectivity. Employees will also be able to provide more detailed presence information via the location feature. Lync will indicate where they are working in the office and they can easily enter their location when they are working at a remote location. They can also use the Activity Feed to display information about projects they are working on.

For employees using enterprise voice, Boeing is using 911 Enable from Connexon Telecom to deliver Emergency Services Support (E911). The E911 SIP trunking service provides connectivity to Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) across the United States. When an employee dials 911, the 911 Enable routes the emergency call and the caller’s accurate location information to the appropriate PSAP, based on the caller’s location. The ERS helps Boeing meet its internal requirements by notifying on-site security of all emergency situations. The solution takes advantage of the location-aware endpoints built into Lync Server so that Boeing does not need to maintain a database of user locations. “E911 is essential to delivering phone service within Boeing. We cannot deliver telephony services without emergency services," explains Sepstrup. “With our mobile workforce and sites that are frequently heavily secured, 911 Enable meets our very demanding requirements for an E911 service.”

Boeing has enabled federation in Lync Server to help improve communications with supply chain partners. “We will often federate with a supplier so they can easily interact with our engineering teams,” explains Sepstrup. “Our teams can see their presence information and out of office notifications just as if they were part of our deployment. This has helped to speed development of parts and reduce costs.”

Boeing is also deploying Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 and Exchange Unified Messaging. With Unified Messaging, Boeing employees will have more control over how and when they respond to voice mail. Using Voice Mail Preview, employees can access a text-based translation of a voice mail message through the Microsoft Office Outlook messaging and collaboration client. They can also view voice mail through the Lync client.

Benefits
By deploying Lync Server, Boeing will help its employees solve complex issues and share knowledge and information more quickly and effectively, regardless of their location. Boeing also seeks to avoid additional costs for audio and web conferencing. “Lync fits into our existing environment. With Lync, you don't have to ‘rip and replace.’ You can build the service on top of what already exists. We did not have to tear anything out or bear additional costs. We just added more flexibility,” says Kletke.

Improved Knowledge Sharing
Engineers at Boeing depend on the communications and collaboration capabilities of Lync to share expertise and solve complex
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* The phone travels with you. Your phone calls will go to the device you specify, even when the computer is turned off. *

Dean Sepstrup
Product Manager, Boeing

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issues. “Our people are not always located right next to each other,” says Sepstrup. “Knowledge management is vital to getting an issue resolved, whether it is something like trouble with an assembly line or a problem with a part. Lync is a key part of our knowledge management solution.”

Employees who work remotely can access the same capabilities as those who work in offices; for example, with the Activity Feed, they can see what their colleagues are doing. “Presence shows you people’s status based on their calendars, but the Activity Feed provides more useful information,” explains Sepstrup. “People can indicate that they are working from home or working on an important report and should not be disturbed.”

Avoided Web Conferencing Costs
Boeing will continue to use its web conferencing service but it expects costs to remain constant as employees use the desktop sharing capabilities in Lync for ad hoc meetings between individuals or very small groups. Although the number of web conferences and the associated costs have increased by double digits every year for the past several years, Boeing expects web conferencing costs not to increase in the future.

Reduced Audio Conferencing Costs
By deploying Lync, Boeing expects the costs for third-party audio conferencing to decrease by 15 to 20 percent. With Lync, Boeing employees will have more communications options. Kletke says, “Regardless of where they are located, employees can use the method of communication that makes the most sense. And if that changes during the communication, they can adjust instantly with Lync. They can move from an IM to a voice conversation or desktop sharing depending on what the situation requires, and this helps drives our efficiency.”

Microsoft Lync Server 2010
Microsoft Lync Server 2010 ushers in a new connected user experience that transforms every communication into an interaction that is more collaborative, and engaging; and that is accessible from anywhere. For IT, the benefits are equally powerful, with a highly secure and reliable communications system that works with existing tools and systems for easier management, lower cost of ownership, smoother deployment and migration, and greater choice and flexibility.

For more information about Microsoft Lync Server 2010, go to:
www.microsoft.com/lync

For More Information
For more information about Microsoft products and services, call the Microsoft Sales Information Center at (800) 426-9400. In Canada, call the Microsoft Canada Information Centre at (877) 568-2495. Customers in the United States and Canada who are deaf or hard-of-hearing can reach Microsoft text telephone (TTY/TDD) services at (800) 892-5234. Outside the 50 United States and Canada, please contact your local Microsoft subsidiary. To access information using the World Wide Web, go to:
www.microsoft.com

For more information about Boeing products and services, call (312) 544-2000 or visit the website at:
www.boeing.com

For more information about Connexon Telecom products and services, call (514) 745-2143 or visit the website at:
www.911enable.net

Solution Overview



Organization Size: 1000 employees

Organization Profile

Boeing is a global aerospace company with more than 158,000 employees. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, the company’s 2010 annual revenue was U.S.$64.3 billion.


Business Situation

Boeing wanted to improve how global teams communicated with each other. In addition to improving knowledge sharing, it wanted to reduce communications costs.


Solution

Boeing deployed Microsoft Lync Server 2010 for enterprise voice capabilities.


Benefits

  • Improved knowledge sharing
  • Avoided web conferencing costs
  • Reduced audio conferencing costs


Software and Services
  • Microsoft Lync Server 2010
  • Microsoft Exchange Server 2010
  • Microsoft Office 2010 Suites
  • Microsoft Lync 2010

Vertical Industries
Automotive, Industrial Equipment & Aerospace

Country/Region
United States

Languages
English

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