The Teleconvergence Approach to System Selection

Section Content

Selecting a System – and Getting it Backward

System Selection Dos and Don'ts

How Teleconvergence Keeps Up With Developments

The Teleconvergence System Selection Process in Detail

Teleconvergence Approach Results List

System Selection Overview

This section explains our system-related process, both how we do it and the order in which we do our work.   You'll also understand the advantages of our Approach and you'll be able to decide whether our methods are consistent with your outlook and priorities.

Please remember: once retained, a consultant becomes part of your management team.  He or she sits on the same side of  the desk as you and shares the responsibility (but not the authority) for defining your needs and ensuring that the proposed system satisfies those needs. If you decide to retain us, then, when we're sitting next to you looking out and seeing the same things, don't you agree that we should also share the same perspective?


The System Selection Approach

Most  prospective clients contact us because they have a problem or issue they'd like us to solve. This can be anything from selecting a new phone system to determining the best technology to cope with an increasingly dispersed or multilingual staff, to coming up with a new product or service value proposition that will drive revenue and differentiate the client in the marketplace.  At times, it's more than one of these simultaneously.

Our Approach deals with systems, formal or informal, because all facets of a company's operations are interrelated in one way or another.  So when you can read about our Approaches, please bear in mind that whether the subject is telecom or a related technology, CRM, product development, documentation,  or any of our other areas of expertise, to us, it's all part of a system.

What's a system? It's a collection of components or parts that function together more effectively, efficiently, or powerfully than they do individually. For example, if a client needs a new phone system, that client also has other business objectives, both short and long term. Sometimes those objectives require a mobile workforce capable of accessing a variety of information, such as CRM and inventory data, from multiple devices. Or calls and messages may be arriving via different media in multiple languages and the executive knows that some kind of integrated call center solution might be appropriate, but isn't sure exactly how to implement it.  A phone system is simply a communications platform that, when implemented properly, allows a company to operate more efficiently and effectively both within and outside an organization's physical boundaries.


The Teleconvergence Approach initially mostly ignores available vendor, system, and technological alternatives, focusing instead on understanding a client's business, technical, and strategic needs. We begin to work on both the short-term issues and intermediate term objectives simultaneously. We project what the implementation of those objectives will look and be like -- the results -- as well as the interim systems and operations that will ultimately be necessary to effect a successful longer-term implementation.  We then work backward to the current situation and determine what requirements must be met  to allow the client to move forward and bring him or her closer to achieving the desired results.

We incorporate that combined set of requirements into our our RFPs (Requests for Proposals). Incidentally, we never issue Requests for Bids (RFBs)).  Why? The answer's in the detailed discussion to our Approach.  We not only put our client's requirements in writing, but we do so in a way that is both vendor and technology agnostic.  We translate a client’s needs into a document that paints a picture of where the client is going --- or wants to go ---  and which requires vendors to describe how their solutions will get the client to the client’s intended destination.

One more thing about our perspective merits mentioning here.  We don't like choices of one. This applies to many facets of our work.  We don't like having a choice of only one solution. We don't like having only one supplier of a given solution. and we absolutely find it unacceptable that a client not know what to do when that solution stops working, as all solutions ultimately do, if only for a while. In other words, almost everything we say and do has a Plan B lurking somewhere in the background.  As a client recently told us, "I'm really happy knowing you've got my back."

The Benefits of Our Approach

Note that our Approach To System Selection effectively reverses the usual situation where vendors propose what they have and you have to decide if it's what you need.  Any vendor's approach locks a company into that vendor's specific vision of the future, including its proprietary technology and an evolution strategy that requires replacing whatever is purchased today in a number of years, whether it's broken or not. Or even whether it needs replacement or not.  Or even whether their vision has anything to do with your vision.

Since Teleconvergence incorporates the business case as well as technical requirements, the achieved result is that technology supports business objectives rather than drive them or operate independently of them.  Not only are results commensurate with desired longer term outcomes, but the need to prematurely revisit the same problem over and over again (The Whack-A-Mole Syndrome) is also eliminated.

The Teleconvergence Approach aligns short term results with long term objectives. It prevents organizational dysfunctionality, improves communications, and increases productivity.  That's why our recommendations work, save money, and build toward the future.  And isn't that  what you really want?


As always, the site map to the left will show you where you are and your choices of reading matter.  The "Click for Details" "links" to the right will give you information about the articles without your ever having to leave the page.

For this topic (System Selection), we suggest that you read the first four articles in order, beginning with Selecting A System — And Getting It  Backward. Fair warning, though: The article, "The Teleconvergence System Selection in Detail" is aptly named, although some clients primarily use it for reference purposes after they've retained us. 

Then what? This is the Methodologies section, where we discuss our methodologies.  For specific services, please consult either the Telecom Consulting Services section for telecom services for end-users or the Management Consulting Services section section, which is more strategic and market-focused than operations-related.  A place comparable to this section under Telecom Consulting Services would be the series of articles under Changing Systems?