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Maclean Computing lets the computer do the talking

News Release, 1 April 2008

Maclean Computing lets the computer do the talking with new product launch

Maclean Computing has launched a new service offering latest generation communications solutions to businesses, with the launch expected to revolutionise both the way businesses acquire and use their communications capability.

Maclean Computing has blended its extensive 15 year experience in information technology (IT) and more recently, telephone services (telephony) to fill a gap in the market by helping companies integrate their phones with their IT systems.

Maclean Computing is an experienced and innovative provider of information technology (IT) and telephone solutions to mid-sized Auckland businesses and provides expert advice on integrated IT and telephone services to help them operate more efficiently with the latest technology available.

Director of sales and marketing Chris Maclean says in the past finding a company that could integrate your phone with your IT system was hard work.

"Many businesses found themselves having to engage multiple suppliers including having to call their telephony hardware supplier, calls provider, IT company, data network provider, cabling company and finance company to get the job done. Now if they fit our profile and have between 10-250 users, businesses can just call us and for a set fee per user per month they can buy a fully functioning and supported unified communications technology."

Maclean Computing spent three months researching what customers wanted and then designed a solution around that. "The messages that came through loud and clear were that businesses wanted clarity and fairness around costs, ownership of the outcome rather than the component parts, account management throughout the three to five buying cycles and the availability of the latest technologies which unify phones and computers."

As a supplier of IT solutions Maclean is well positioned to meet these desires. "Creating solutions from disparate component parts is what we do every day, so adding phone systems into the frame was not difficult. And because we have so much to offer our clients we already see our supported clients monthly, which is a major improvement on the traditional 'phones only' environment."

In addition, the IT industry learned to operate on slim hardware margins long ago, making improving the commercial offering for customers seeking integrated telephone and IT services easy too.

Maclean says vast improvements in customer service can be gained by integrating your phone systems with IT. "The technology is available now for your computer to better inform customers trying to get hold of you, reducing frustration and increasing satisfaction. For example your phone message system can scan your calendar and tell callers what you're up to - whether that be in a meeting, on holiday or otherwise occupied as well as when you'll next be free to talk. This is great for callers and recipients with noticeable reductions in irrelevant and out-of-date phone messages."

Mr Maclean says everything in communication today is about instant gratification. "The Gen-Y generation wants to know everything now, whether by instant message, email or phone," he says.

"Customers do not need to know where you are to get hold of you first try. Mobile devices should be fully functional extensions of your desk, offering the same instant messaging, phone and email services available at the desktop. If people can't respond immediately they at least want to know why, and when you will get back to them. Providing this level of service without a personal assistant would be too time consuming but this system automates the responses based on information already available, effectively letting the computer do the talking."

Mr Maclean says unifying their IT and telephony service also means rationalising costs. "In addition to the numerous functional benefits, the service also offers financial benefits. An obvious one is in cabling - one cable can now service both telephony and IT needs, reducing costs up to 30% in this area," Mr Maclean says.

"Cutting down the support costs are also evident - instead of paying up to $350 to add a new user these systems are user-friendly easy enough to maintain yourselves, or have us attend to it as part of your regular monthly IT support visit. Adding ten minutes to an existing visit to address a phone issue is far more cost effective than a specific visit just for the phone issue alone"

It also means when you have a problem with your computer, you know that the person handling your telephone line will not adversely affect your computer network.

Mr Maclean says telephone expertise is just one discipline which IT experts can cross over into, but not the other way around. "Typically, if you are going to implement a service like this you need it to be installed by an IT expert with telephony expertise, not the other way around. Telephony is just one cog, albeit a very important cog, in the wheel of information technology."

Mr Maclean says the decision to introduce the new service came from its existing client base who were demanding what unified communications has to offer but were struggling to find a partner to deliver it. In many cases the services simply weren't available from their existing telephony suppliers, who did not have the expertise or desire to implement it.

"The timing was right for us. Customers now understand that phone systems don't have to be separate from their IT systems but can simply be a part of it. It offers greater capability, saves money and is easier for customers to manage. It simply makes sense, and the early responses we have received have been overwhelmingly positive."

ENDS

About Maclean Computing

Established in 1993, Maclean Computing provides design, supply, installation and support services for business computers and networks, including wide area networks, to mid-sized Auckland businesses. Maclean Computing has approximately 50 staff including experienced design consultants, account managers and network engineers. Maclean aims to attract clients with staff of more than 10 and less than 250.

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