What communications tools would you like us to use?

Yellow hallwayWith our department spread across three locations, and some individuals telecommuting or working remotely, it’s very important to me that we find new ways to communicate. And I believe that as an IT department we should use and experiment with technology to facilitate our communication. In this new blog, I intend to raise issues and pose questions for all of you to consider and respond to. I truly value your input and creativity. As President Napolitano has said, the best ideas often come from those on the ground. So here’s my first question to you: What communications tools have you had good experience with or would like to see us use in ITS? We may not be able to implement them all or even right away, but let’s get the conversation started. Change begins with ideas.

Comments (15)

  1. Terrell McQuitta

    Since I work at the IT Service Desk I am aware of upcoming remote communication tools like A3 (VDI), ReadyTalk, Fuzebox, Chat/IM applications and so on. But what is missing from the puzzle is the ability to translate voice mails from my office phone into emails that can be send to my UCOP account. No matter where I am within my work environment my smartphone is with me. I may not always be able to answer calls (meetings, traveling and so on) but I can capture and respond to emails fairly quickly. Is that capability on our technology road map?

    Reply
    1. Tom A

      It’s an interesting comment. I haven’y seen anything but I have to imagine that there is an app somewhere for this. I know that on my smart phone, all messages are now digital with full ability to drop into any point of the call – like a video clip. Question out to the group – has anyone seen app for this? Maybe if we can find something we can pilot it

      Reply
    2. Tom A

      It’s an interesting comment. You would think at this point of time there would be an app for that. I know with my smartphone all my messages are digitally captured and I can go to any point in the message. So that means an app to translate would just to be applied. Has anyone seen an app that does this?

      Reply
      1. Patty Herkins

        I don’t think that is possible unless you forward your office phone to your smartphone. I may be wrong but I think the office phone system is the stopper. There is an application for iphones called Hullomail with this feature.
        https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/hullomail-free-smartvoicemail/id341815203?mt=8
        If you have a google phone number, you can recieve those voicemails via email.

        Reply
        1. Angelie Gurule

          I have a Google phone number and it saves the voice message and transcribes it for text and email. If the office phone is forwarded to the Google number, it’s a great, no-cost, temporary workaround.

          Reply
          1. Tom A

            do yo need to pay anything for a Google number?

          2. Angelie Gurule

            It is free to sign up for a Google Voice account and phone number for people residing in US and Canada. There are costs to change your number once established, to make international calls, and possibly for other services that I haven’t used yet. Here is a link to some great introductory videos about Google Voice.
            http://www.google.com/googlevoice/about.html#utm_source=en-ha-na-us-sk&utm_medium=ha&utm_term=google%20voice%20number&utm_campaign=en

  2. Tom Andriola (Post author)

    We started the blog to get people thinking, commenting & sharing ideas. Let me here what you have to say . . . T

    Reply
  3. Paula Eeds

    I have heard that some companies have used “instant messaging” as a tool to reach someone quickly. Would this ever be an option for ITS?

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    1. Tom A

      Yes. we are working on a plan for this. Quite honestly I don’t understand how the organization has been able to go without. You won’t believe the change in patterns of communication once you get a tool like this in place

      Reply
  4. Patty Herkins

    I think we need IM desperately. I’ve been using MS Lync but it is not integrated with Outlook so you have to open it separately and populate your address book. I believe MS Lync is still in a pilot mode and not everyone is using it.
    Is ITS still considering moving to google mail/apps or Office 365 or some other hosted suite?

    Reply
    1. Tom A

      Both options are still on the table for us. Obviously, from where we are right now Office 365 is closer to the answer. But most people seem to like the Google suite better. Longer term Google seems poised to win the battle, but today’s article about their mining of student email will hurt them

      Reply
  5. Anyi Zheng

    I used to work at high-tech companies where the “instant messaging” was used by everyone within the organization. There were tools such as Cisco WebEx Connect IM.
    Also, when someone called my office phone and left a voice mail, the voice mail would be sent to my emails account with the sender’s phone number shown, and I could listen to the voice mail from my computer. This was commonly used and it will be great to see it available here at UCOP.

    Reply
    1. Tom A

      We’re going to try and get to that point here, where we use more of those tools Instant messaging is a good start. I am also looking at a “communitiy” type tool for knowledge sharing & mgmt. We had a meeting today on it for ITS and several other groups inside UCOP

      Reply
  6. Tom A

    OK, just finished the latest Town Hall – revised format with more external speakers, live streaming so people can view from anywhere & more groups ITS participating. So tell me what you think?
    T

    Reply

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