Friday, April 1, 2011

Looking for Unified Messaging with Domino? AVST has an offering.

I had the good fortune of attending the UC Summit conference this past week in beautiful San Diego, put on by the folks from UC Strategies. (It was so nice to have a few moments between sessions to feel the sun and enjoy the gardens and the hummingbirds when my own backyard in Wisconsin was still covered in ice and snow!)

I sat in one session by a company called AVST, that sells enterprise voicemail systems.  Going into the session, I was under the assumption that most companies used the voicemail system of whatever PBX/telephony provider they selected (or Exchange since it has it natively).  Apparently not according to a Voice Report survey that showed AVST as leading the market for voicemail in their 2009 report with a 29% market share.  I have to question the validity of the study since touching base with some colleagues who deal with core telephony sales daily rarely encounter AVST.  But the point is, regardless of what PBX you use, you have options on the voicemail side.  According to AVST, they support over 400 systems (see chart).

Who cares, you ask?  Well, I have run into some companies upset because the telephony provider who they've used in the past for voicemail and unified messaging with Lotus Notes is no longer supporting unified messaging with Lotus.  (Unified Messaging = receiving voicemail as an attachment to an email message.  1 inbox to manage for the user). Some telephony vendors may say silly things at that point, like, "who knows, maybe they'll switch to Exchange soon."  Of course, since Exchange can manage voicemail on its own, it can displace the telephony vendors voicemail system as well (so be careful what you wish for).

If you're faced with a similar dilemma, you may want to check out AVST's offerings.  They claim to fully support Lotus Notes/Domino versions 7 - 8.5.  That is, if you think voicemail is still relevant.

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