We are an independent technology consulting firm providing communications infrastructure design and telecommunications systems planning services. Whatever your communication needs are and no matter how large...

Whether you are in the planning stage of a unified communications project, replacing an antiquated telephone system, need to redesign a WAN or LAN, or want to replace or expand your current data communications network...

 
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federal building
Federal courthouse, Billings, MT. Technology systems review and coordination for new building construction
medical
Medicaid operations call center review and analysis
data center
infrastructure cabling design
multimedia
expense management
corporate office
infrastructure cabling design
outside plant
relocation design
medical
ACCESS call center transformation
utility services
feasibility and design
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Client

Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health

Project

ACCESS Call Center Transformation Project

Challenge

Los Angeles County DMH required consulting services for the transformation of its ACCESS Center, a 24hour-7days per week call center for mental health emergencies and access to mental health resources. The County's existing Nortel and Symposium systems was experiencing inbound call bottlenecks compounded by complex caller needs and workflow processes.

Process

COMgroup was selected to provide telephony and call center expertise for this multi-year project, and worked alongside a healthcare consulting firm onboard for other project phases. The initial task was a technology acquisition to be made within the constraints of a time-limited federal grant already underway. COMgroup's recommendations established a robust and sustainable technical infrastructure capable of accommodating the range of products under consideration for the call center transformation.

Utilizing COMgroup's established project methodology, and working alongside the healthcare consulting partner, we:
  • conducted interviews, observed operations
  • documented and analyzed call flow and work flow
  • participated in structured Joint Application Development sessions
  • compiled technical and functional telephone system and call center requirements
  • produced detailed financial analyses
  • led the effort to determine the best solution design and vendor alternatives

Results

DMH acted on COMgroup's recommendation to contract for a hosted telephony and contact center solution to deliver the desired functionality, ensure service levels for uptime requirements and meet the County's business continuity initiatives. Further recommendations to streamline delivery of services included the implementation of a first level triage unit, a plan for upgrading or replacing other information systems, and enhancement of the department's website.

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Client

Software Developer

Project

Edina, Minnesota Technology Center Design
Provide design services for the client's Edina Minnesota headquarters with the goal of creating a cutting edge technology center. At completion the technology center will occupy approximately 52,000 square feet in Tower III, a six-floor tower at 3601 W. 76th St. in the Centennial Lakes Office Park in Edina. The scope of services provided within this telecommunications project included:
  • Design the horizontal and backbone cable infrastructure, a server display center, and telecommunications spaces.
  • Calculate the heat load and power requirements for the telecommunications spaces based on the client's equipment inventory.
  • Adhere to the contractor's project schedule.
  • Coordinate project milestones and deliverables with the construction team, contractors and client.

Challenge

The software company's technology centers host the client's technology "Suites" containing consumer applications in a simulated home and business environments, within the overall Envisioning Center. The client's design goals consist of the following objectives:
  • Create a technology center showcase to house software applications in an environment accommodating public access, high visibility, and prestigious customers.
  • Design the telecommunications infrastructure and spaces to support the incorporation of simulated end-user environments (home, business, and retail locations) of product applications.
  • Provide an infrastructure design robust enough to accommodate 150 additional headcount within 18 months.

Process

COMgroup focuses on technology and telecommunications infrastructure system needs analysis, design, and project management. We use a proven and repeatable methodology to manage projects contains COMgroup's approach. We use the general approach to guide all of our activities, and we performed these tasks on this project:
  • Obtain design requirements for all technical systems
  • Integrate infrastructure requirements
  • Facilitate application of owner standards and guidelines
  • Attend weekly project meetings
  • Perform job site inspections
  • Assured the finished product meets technical specifications, owner requirements, and TIA/EIA standards
  • Review of digital photographs at each completed milestone to validate adherence to design criteria
  • Performance of punch and back-punch walk-throughs
  • Perform project close out

Results

COMgroup's technology center design experience accommodated the compressed construction schedule for this project. With COMgroup's ability to implement a comprehensive design strategy, its record for leadership during construction administration and expense management, the project completed on time and on budget. This is just one example of dozens of similar projects completed by COMgroup for this client across national and international locations. Specific deliverables for the project include:
  • Deliver document design package
  • Provide final punch list documentation
  • Provide record drawings and operations & maintenance manuals


This is just one example of dozens of similar projects completed by COMgroup for this client across national and international locations. Do you have a technology center design project? Contact COMgroup and we can assist you with all your communication needs.

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Client

Oregon Health Plan Department of Medical Assistance Programs

Project

Medicaid Operations Call Center Review and Analysis

Challenge

When the State of Oregon Department of Medical Assistance Programs (DMAP) implemented a new Medicaid Management Information System (MMIS); their goal was to become a world class call center. DMAP sought the services of an independent consulting team to help them utilize their existing resources and technology to the fullest, understand their limitations and obtain recommendations for future changes.

Process

Critical to the success of the project was a thorough understanding of the interactions between the new MMIS system and the existing telecommunications environment, including the IVR, telephone system, management metrics, and desktop electronics.

COMgroup, along with a partner firm specializing in medical information system, initiated a project to analyze and assess the current call center operations. Utilizing our structured methodology we:
  • conducted a technical and functional evaluation of the existing systems, call flow, agent performance, and customer-facing portals
  • observed and interviewed key call center staff and medical providers
  • documented cradle to grave processes.

Results

The project analysis and recommendations provided DMAP with a thorough assessment of their current systems and processes, recommendations for immediate actions and long-term plans, performance benchmarks, and the creation of a mission statement.

The immediate process improvements included:
  • optimization of the existing telephone and call center systems
  • reorganization of call flow designed to drive first call resolution
  • initiation of staff improvements including training programs and performance goals
Long term recommendations included the eventual replacement of the telephone system, implementation of multimedia, and procurement of quality monitoring and workforce management solutions


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Client

Microsoft

Project

High Tech Data Center - Quincy, Wa
COMgroup provided data center design and construction administration services for a project located in Quincy, WA. The project consisted of containerized data center cells located at a single location. In addition to the design, COMgroup provided construction administration and quality control services for the duration of the project.

Challenge

COMgroup's client discovered maintaining isolated farms of application servers housed in a shipping container achieves a higher rate of performance and availability than staffing a data center with humans intervening to resolve server and operational failures. As a result, the client's data center requirements focus on the following elements:
  • Infrastructure needed to support up to 10,000 servers
  • Servers mounted in two rows of racks running the entire 48' length of the container
  • A highly monitored, modular, and unstaffed data center environment
The data center's infrastructure design tightly defines the carrier, Internet, environmental (cooling, power, etc.), and rack requirements in order to support modular replacement of a cell when the individual server failure rate within a container achieves 20%.

Process

COMgroup focuses on technology and telecommunications infrastructure system needs analysis, design, and project management. We use a proven and repeatable methodology to manage projects, Our Process contains COMgroup's approach.

Results

COMgroup delivered designs to support strategic data center cells housed in shipping containers with the infrastructure needed to support and manage any one of the client's customer group server farms. Project deliverables included:
  • Delivered designs for four (4) containerized data centers
  • Delivered the tools and applications used to manage the containerized data center infrastructure, including:
    • ID tags and full inventory of all core infrastructure contained in the cell
    • All network services (core, distribution, and access) to connect to the client's network
    • Environmental controls (power, cooling, weights, etc.)
    • Out-of-band management systems
    • Electrical and power monitoring systems
    • Building management systems



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Client

Real Networks

Project

COMgroup provides RealNetworks on-going project and telecom management services and operated as a trusted advocate for RealNetworks business success.

Challenge

Within the telecommunications industry, it is a widely recognized fact that there is an immense amount of financial waste due to inadequate telecom cost management. Telecommunications is typically the third or fourth largest expense of any enterprise annual budget and is known to be the fastest growing cost per employee. RealNetworks, Inc., a pioneer in the Internet media industry, looked to COMgroup to provide long-term, cost-saving telecommunications services.

Process

COMgroup has worked with RealNetworks since 1998, providing project and telecom management services. Projects included:
  • Developed telephone system technical and infrastructure design for Seattle headquarters and several branch offices
  • Performed Call center design
  • Developed voice and call center disaster recovery plans
  • Evaluated RFP responses and recommended a telephone system solution and vendor
  • Managed telephone and telecommunications systems implementation
  • Developed local, long distance, and data network designs
  • Performed carrier cost analysis and contract negotiation
  • Managed of Real Network's moves, adds and changes on their telephone systems
  • Managed of monthly invoices and expenses
COMgroup supported RealNetworks in all facets of its telecommunications network. The partnership relied on the in-depth knowledge and experience gained only by working directly on-site with RealNetworks.

Results

Through its intelligently designed telephone system and analysis/negotiation services, COMgroup has provided RealNetworks with several benefits. They include expert advice and guidance, time and staff savings and timely delivery of services. Most significantly, however, RealNetworks found meaningful improvements to its bottom line. The company is no longer a victim to the financial waste common in the telecommunications industry and will continue to see cost savings for years to come.

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Client

Microsoft

Project

150th Street Realignment

With the planned construction of a 1.2 million square foot underground parking garage and street alignment, the existing underground utilities (including vaults, pathways and associated infrastructures) had to be relocated. The client asked COMgroup to perform a telecommunications due diligence and relocation design for all existing underground private and public communications pathways and infrastructures located on 150th street between NE 36th and NE 40th street in Redmond, WA. COMgroup also coordinated and designed various dry utilities (power, gas, etc.) located within the same areas. Project tasks included:
  • Perform due diligence survey of existing 150th Street pathways and infrastructure
  • Coordination with the client, public utilities and carriers
  • Design new underground pathways, new SONET infrastructure relocation and new copper infrastructure

Challenge

The project provided several challenging requirements and design components. This project needed to accommodate simultaneous operation to provide parallel pathways and infrastructure to allow our client the ability to migrate existing services from the old to the new with minimal downtime and business impact. The project required balancing numerous factors, such as:
  • Documentation and validation of all infrastructures contained in the redundant rings occupying the vaults that supported multiple facilities and customers.
  • Design and coordination of a "shared" underground trench containing dry utilities (i.e. power, gas, communications, providers, etc.) for relocation.
  • Design of a parallel infrastructure system adequate to support the migration of the new infrastructure.
  • Provide meticulous coordination of multiple utility vendors (private and public).
  • Utilize separate design teams to support the road improvements and the construction of a new underground facility.
  • Coordinate vendors to ensure tight control of the construction elements to achieve high quality outcomes.

Process

COMgroup used a structured project methodology to collect the existing environment details and research new technical and business requirements; Our proven process contains a full description of our project approach.

Results

COMgroup's work on the 150th Street Realignment project resulted in a plan to support the construction of the parking garage and delivered the following items:
  • Site survey and due diligence report documenting existing trench dry utility contents.
  • Site design providing the client with a detailed understanding of all pathways, infrastructure, and services that were affected by the area reconstruction work.
The services performed by COMgroup allowed the client to plan migration of these critical services to the newly designed and installed infrastructure in a controlled manner with minimal customer impact. The client coordinated migration of services to the new fiber, copper, and dry utility infrastructure several months in advance, preventing interruption in services, and thus limited the business and financial impacts.

To find out more about COMgroup's cable infrastructure construction design services, please contact us.

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Client

Billings Federal Courthouse

Project

Technology systems review and coordination for new building construction
Billings Federal Courthouse, with approximately 140,000 square feet, five (5) floors, five (5) federal agency anchor tenants (US Marshalls, US Attorney General, GSA, Probation, and US District Court), and approximately 2000 employees, selected COMgroup to:
  • Perform a full review of all tenant technology systems
  • Design shell and core riser pathways
  • Design demarcation and telecom room layout
  • Position the buildings infrastructure for future technology
  • Provide Technology Coordination Project Management (TCPM) services

Challenge

The new Federal Courthouse in Billings, Montana, under construction at the time of COMgroup's technology review project, intended to gather all of the federal agencies in Billings into a single location. As a result of the previously distributed location of federal agencies in the city, a holistic telecommunications and technology plan merging the unique requirements of each agency did not exist. The challenge posed by merging the federal agencies into a single location consisted of:
  • Discovering the unique needs of each agency
  • Filling-in the gaps and holes of the existing systems
  • Providing a comprehensive telecommunications and technology plan for the building that meets the current tenant's requirements
  • Positioning the building with manageable and extensible solutions for the future

Process

COMgroup uses a structured project methodology in a phased approach; Our proven process contains a full description of our project approach.

Results

COMgroup provided the Billings Federal Courthouse with a technology summary plan which:
  • Contained all tenant required telecommunications and technology systems.
  • Integrated the telecommunications and technology requirements of each tenant into a unified technology approach for the building.
  • Allowed each tenant to select from a menu of technology solutions, ranging from a unified and comprehensive implementation of telecommunication and technology solutions, all the way down to a la carte pin-point solutions.


For assistance with your technology infrastructure design projects, please contact us.

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Client

Skagit County Public Utility District

Project

Broadband Communication Solution Feasibility and Design
Skagit County Public Utility District requested COMgroup perform a concise feasibility study on broadband communications solution options using a mixture of fiber optic and microwave technologies. The intended use of the fiber and/or microwave backbone included monitoring and controlling the Utility District’s computer and power systems and routing ISP services to Skagit County rural residents. COMgroup’s services included:
  • Technology and business feasibility analysis
  • Engineering, design, CAD drawings services
  • Vendor selection processes
  • Vendor implementation management

Challenge

The broadband feasibility and design project posed business and technology challenges. The business challenges consisted of a blend of funding source research and coordination with utilities, railroads and municipalities. Technical challenges included balancing outside physical environment, technical and business requirements within a single broadband wireless technology solution, including:
  • Road, river and railroad crossings and Rights-of-way negotiation with utilities
  • Approximately 50 miles of rural infrastructure and pathways
  • Design of a mixed use broadband solution supporting public utility and business requirements

Process

COMgroup applied a multiphase project approach to the broadband solution feasibility and design project. Based on the geographic segmentation of the Skagit valley COMgroup divided Skagit County’s project into three phases. COMgroup uses a structured methodology to manage projects; Our proven process contains our approach.

Results

COMgroup’s work with Skagit County delivered the project feasibility study, and by phase delivered:
  • Phase 1 – pole inventory, two detailed engineering and construction designs, materials lists, and implementation of a fiber backbone from Sedro Woolley to Hamilton.
  • Phase 2 – pole inventory, two detailed engineering and construction designs, materials list for backbone from Hamilton to Concrete, and wireless broadband design for the town of Concrete.
  • Phase 3 – pole inventory and feasibility study for backbone segment from Sedro Woolley to Mount Vernon. To find out more about COMgroup’s cable infrastructure design services, please call 425-284.6500.


For assistance with your technology feasability and design projects, please contact us.

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Our Process

COMgroup Project Approach

COMgroup's project approach utilizes a structured methodology to deliver solutions in alignment with business processes, goals and objectives. Our projects consist of definable phases and consistent deliverables. The phases logically build information from discovery and assessment, through design specification, procurement, and implementation. The basic tenets of COMgroup's approach consist of:

What we provide?

COMgroup provides business aligned telecommunications infrastructure, systems, and technology planning, design and implementation services. Our project approach and consistent delivery methodology ensures quality projects with measurable deliverables that produce:

How we do it?

COMgroup uses a disciplined methodology to deliver our projects. The methodology's hallmark consists of listening and understanding our clients' needs as we create the building blocks of the project activities. Most projects start at the infrastructure level, with the focus built around delivering a solid infrastructure to support technology designs. Five steps underpin our approach and support our infrastructure and telecommunications system projects: We augment our infrastructure projects with technology coordination project management services. For telecommunication systems projects, we add a network assessment component to support the deployment of VoIP and SIP based technologies and an end user needs analysis process. For contact center projects, we perform a comprehensive call flow/work flow analysis. The five core components of our structured project approach consist of: The science of our standard project process results in systems designed for availability, maintainability, manageability, scalability, reliability, affordability, and security. The art of COMgroup's services come from blending our standard project approach with our industry experience to create cost effective solutions grounded in business needs to meet our client's current and future technology requirements.