The aftermath of the pandemic gave a boost to the transition to hybrid work and mobile office requiring new technical approaches to ensure the efficiency of corporate workers in the new reality. If earlier “mobility” was perceived as a factor that to a certain extent limits the productivity of employees, now, with technical solutions, they are able to achieve high performance even outside the office perimeter. According to representatives of the Development Bank of Kazakhstan (DBK, a subsidiary of “Baiterek” Holding), the need to ensure the widespread availability of the Bank’s IT services in compliance with information security requirements in DBK is long overdue, but with the onset of the first wave of coronavirus, this need became extremely acute.
“Market trends dictate their own rules - old telephony is rapidly losing its popularity, becoming obsolete. The pandemic has greatly accelerated the adoption of this fact in the Bank, because, being in quarantine, the need for corporate landline phones no longer exists, now all communications are maintained via smartphones,” said Sandugash Kenzhebayeva, Deputy Chairman of the Board of DBK.
The Bank began designing its own IP telephony infrastructure at the end of 2020, and at the same time purchased equipment for building a single integrated system that combines telephony, audio and video conferencing with the possibility of external access. To make corporate calls, the Cisco Jabber software client is used, which allows each Bank employee to use two devices: a laptop and a smartphone.
Additionally, based on the updated infrastructure, a video conferencing service has been implemented, using which three or more participants can interact via voice and video communication technology in good quality. The new service has already been tested by members of the Board of Directors - an online meeting of the collegial body and its committees was held, where such issues as the approval of the DBK’s annual report and the risk report, as well as adjustments to the action plan for updating the Bank's development strategy were discussed.
“For effective interaction of the Bank’s employees in the software product, we have created separate video conference rooms for each structural division of the Bank with a dedicated dial-up number; all of them are available around the clock. The video conferencing service is integrated with the equipped hall of the Board of Directors, which allows holding conferences in various scenarios, with high quality video and audio transmission. We have already held pilot meetings, the product has shown its excellent quality,” said Sandugash Kenzhebayeva, Deputy Chairman of the Board of DBK.
The main advantage of implementing the Bank’s own IP telephony, in addition to the convenience and mobility of employees, is the use of an integrated end-to-end solution in terms of network management and security, as well as the ability to remotely administer the telecommunications infrastructure. In the future, it is planned to scale the system, filling it with additional functional solutions.
DBK representatives note that the system is completely customized for the current needs of the Bank, because it was personally designed by employees by their own internal forces. Nevertheless, its capabilities are not limited to what is available today. Now, for example, an additional function has been added to integrate the telephone directory with the Active Directory.
As of today, the Bank employees are successfully using the Cisco Jabber software client instead of old landline phones; the obsolescent telephone communication platform has been decommissioned. New methods of receiving calls have been implemented into the workflow, including through the configured auto attendant at 8 (7172) 79 26 00.
In the future, as the Bank’s appetite grows, the capabilities and characteristics of the software client will be supplemented.