Chorus replaces all of the University's existing telephony systems: this includes traditional phone lines and Cisco VOIP phones. It was originally intended to implement the new system on a building by building basis in six sequential tranches each lasting three months, between August 2016 and April 2018. However, the emergency closure of the Tinbergen (Zoology and Experimental Psychology) building has resulted in the early transfer to Chorus of approximately 800 staff. In addition, the telephony for buildings supported by the telephone exchange housed within Tinbergen is at risk. Therefore, the project is hoping to bring forward some units and complete implementation by the end of December 2017. Units affected by this proposed re-planning have been contacted and the project is liaising with them to facilitate the change.
This liaison is part of the engagement process during which the Chorus project team meets with Departmental Administrators, college bursars, ITSS managers and additional key contacts up to three months before scheduled implementation dates.
Units across the University play a vital role in ensuring that their own Chorus implementations are successful:
- Units must submit accurate telephony data and requirements in the required format. This involves populating a spreadsheet and validating data in Phone Manager, which is the University’s central system for telephony. The project team does not have sufficient resource to transfer information that is provided in other formats.
- This submission needs to be made by the agreed deadline (6 weeks before implementation) and represents what that unit will receive. Changes requested to telephony data and requirements after the defined deadline are collated for action post-implementation [of that location/building] as a business as usual activity.
- Units should complete their Network Readiness Assessment ASAP and before the defined deadline, to give early warning of any technical remediation required.
- Pre-implementation, each unit has a walkthrough meeting to agree the implementation approach and roles and responsibilities on the day(s).
- It is critical that:
- final pre-implementation tasks (e.g. those highlighted during the walkthrough meeting) are completed as agreed (e.g. patching prior to implementation, patching during implementation)
- local roles and responsibilities are provided for on the day(s) of implementation
- sufficient resource/documentation is made available on the day(s) to facilitate the chaperoning and navigation for the implementation team (including, for example, floor plans, user plans, wall port/communication cabinet information).
What Chorus will provide
The project will initially deliver a replacement phone, alongside access to the Web Portal through which the additional features can be accessed on an optional basis. (If soft-phones or the Mobile App is required, they will be offered on a self-service, non-centrally supported basis.)
The standard replacement phone will be a Unify 35G, a basic desk phone that plugs directly into a network socket and does not require a computer to use Chorus. It has the following features:
- 2 line display.
- 10 Fixed feature keys: Messages, Settings, Speaker, Mute, Hold, Headset, Transfer, Conference, Volume up and down.
- 4 adjustable angles.
- Wall mountable without additional kit.
Access will also be provided via your SSO to the Chorus Web Portal at https://web.chorus.ox.ac.uk which can be used to:
- Search the Directory, and place calls directly from it.
- Send and receive Instant Messages.
- Add contacts to your personal Contacts Pane, and arrange them into groups.
- Access your Call History.
- Manage your Voicemail.
Information about the more advanced functionality of Chorus will be available later in 2017, for example:
- Assigning another phone to make and receive calls through your work number (Preferred Device).