Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific, a leading document solutions company, has more than 10,000 employees throughout the region. To stay connected and collaborate with each other, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific employees rely on several modes of communications. However this meant that the company was essentially supporting three different systems to meet its business communication needs. To streamline and simplify its communications infrastructure, Fuji Xerox chose to implement Microsoft Unified Communications. With the help of partner Avanade, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific completed a pilot deployment of Microsoft® Office Communications Server 2007 in September 2007. The positive feedback on the user experience and strong management support for the solution provided strong evidence that Microsoft Unified Communications can meet Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific’s communication requirements.
Established in 1962 as a joint venture between Fujifilm and Xerox Corporation, Fuji Xerox is a global total document solutions company with consolidated revenue in FY2006 of approximately U.S.$10 billion. With 10,000 employees, 12 sales companies, and four production complexes in Asia Pacific, Fuji Xerox’s operations in this region accounts for approximately 20 percent of the organization’s revenue.
||With Microsoft Unified Communications, we can now look forward to a truly integrated communications solution at lower costs. The benefits we can derive from unified communications seem endless.
||Kenji Watanabe President and CEO Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific
Because of the global nature of its business, open and readily available communications between Fuji Xerox employees was a critical business requirement. Kenji Watanabe, President and CEO, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific, explains, “Our people need to continuously collaborate with their counterparts from our Japan headquarters, regional offices and other Xerox entities in the world to deliver high performance solutions and services to our customers.”
In order to facilitate communication between its geographically-dispersed employees, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific provides several channels of communications, namely VoIP, video conferencing, email and instant messaging. To do so, it was supporting three different systems for the various modes of communication. As Lee Fook Thong, Infrastructure Services Manager, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific, explains, this posed a number of problems for the organization. “It is definitely not cost effective for us to manage and support three different ‘heavyweight’ systems in their individual silos. As it is, the individual systems can be rather costly to maintain and manage,” says Lee.
Lee adds that the video conferencing system took up a lot of bandwidth. Also, because some of these applications are essentially minority applications, they invariably have rather steep learning curves for new users. Even experienced end users in Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific faced challenges when using the independent communication systems. For Edwina Wee, Information Strategy and Planning Manager, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific, setting up a video conference with her colleagues in other parts of the region took as long as 30 minutes. “A single integrated system that simplifies the way we communicate with each other would be much better,” confirms Wee.
In September 2007, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific took its first steps towards unified communications. After a carefully-considered technology evaluation, it decided that Microsoft® offered the best solution to meet all of its business communications needs.
Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific chose Avanade as its partner in carrying out a pilot deployment of Microsoft® Office Communications Server 2007, a key component in Microsoft® Unified Communications, to approximately 50 employees. The choice of Avanade as a partner in this pilot was not a difficult decision to make. “Avanade has the required expertise, and are known to be a proven and reliable partner,” says Lee.
The pool of pilot users, nominated by managing directors and general managers from various departments, were provided with the suite of Office Communications Server 2007 applications, Web cameras, as well as Office Communications Server-certified Jabra headsets provided by GN, the world’s leading supplier of enterprise hands-free communications solutions.
The pilot users were involved in series of one-to-one tests to gather feedback on the user experience. Office Communications Server 2007 was also tested when it was used to conduct working video conferences involving Fuji Xerox employees from various countries.
At the same time, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific also began its migration to Microsoft® Exchange Server 2007 in early October 2007. This was in line with its plans to leverage Microsoft Unified Communications in enhancing its business communications. The migration was completed in February 2008.
Because of the ubiquitous nature of Microsoft applications, many aspects of Office Communications Server 2007 were highly intuitive for the users. The integrated nature of solution has meant that Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific now has a single out-of-the-box unified communications solution that the organization could deploy to meet its business communication needs.
Provides High Quality Communications
The quality of voice and video communications left an indelible impression on many of the users. Jabra headsets also helped to enhance user experience by providing hands-free productivity and freedom to roam.
Supports Multiple Locations
According to Lee, many members of the Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific management have commented that Microsoft Unified Communications was exactly what they had been look for. Lee confirms, “The video conferencing aspect of Office Communications Server 2007 performs well, which is really important for us, as the organization frequently conducts regional meetings involving participants from throughout the region.”
Users in Fuji Xerox also quickly took to Office Communications Server 2007, with even employees who were not part of the pilot requesting to be involved. For end users like Wee, the simplicity of Office Communications Server 2007 applications had a profound impact on productivity. “Now, instead of 30 minutes to set up a video conference, I only need five. The minimal effort involved helps us save a lot of time we would have otherwise wasted previously.” Wee further noted that with Microsoft Unified Communications solutions in place, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific employees can look forward to staying connected and collaborating on demand, anytime, and anywhere.
Watanabe too agrees that with Microsoft Unified communications, Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific now has the tools to increase its productivity and deliver the most value to all of its customers. Watanabe noted that face-to-face discussions with geographically dispersed Fuji Xerox colleagues from different time zones will now be as easy as picking up a phone to call a colleague in the same building. He adds, “With Microsoft Unified Communications, we can now look forward to a truly integrated communications solution at lower costs. The benefits we can derive from unified communications seem endless.” Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific will be deploying Microsoft Unified Communications in phases to its users throughout the region, beginning with those users who have already expressed an eagerness to start using it. The initial roll-out will involve some 3,500 Fuji Xerox employees. Eventually, it will be deployed to all 10,000 staff members in Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific. Watanabe affirms, “Once fully deployed, I believe Microsoft Unified Communications will help us further strengthen our position as market leaders.”
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Microsoft Unified Communications
Microsoft Unified Communications For more information on Microsoft Unified Communications, go to www.microsoft.com/uc