Virtual Office Featured Article

RingCentral in the Ivy League of Cloud Communications with Columbia University Deal

February 12, 2019
By Erik Linask, Group Editorial Director

Managing 44,000 is challenging for any IT team.  When those 44,000 comprise an Ivy League school’s faculty, staff, and student body, it’s even harder.  Not only are all of Columbia University’s 44,000 users mobile and using countless applications and services, there is significant turnover every year with thousands of new incoming freshman and thousands more graduating seniors.

Legacy communications simply don’t offer the capabilities today’s university users require – after all, the majority of the users are students, who are digital natives and expect to be able to communicate as they do in their personal lives.  Faculty, too, need to collaborate with colleagues, students, and administration and modern tools allow them much more functionality to do to effectively.

To enable a new level of communications and collaboration for its users, Columbia is migrating RingCentral’s cloud-based unified communications platform.  Replacing its legacy communications infrastructure with a cloud communications solution will not only enable modern capabilities for students and faculty, but will immediately lessen the burden on IT staff, who no longer have to manage a complete system – just the users.

The University is deploying 14,000 seats of RingCentral (News - Alert) Office for its faculty, providing them voice, video, team messaging, online meeting, SMS, and fax capabilities.  The 33,000 students will be provided Ring Central’s team messaging capabilities.

It’s not surprising Columbia chose RingCentral.  Three years ago, Columbia’s Teachers College graduate school deployed RingCentral for its 1,700 users.

Back then, Teachers College CIO Naveed Hussain explained the decision:  “As we assessed different options, it was clear RingCentral would allow us to change how we communicate and collaborate with its rich and innovative features, easy administration, and integrations with apps we use everyday... The addition of Glip to RingCentral’s portfolio is also really impressive. We’ve been quickly adopting Glip throughout our organization, communicating, sharing documents, and collaborating on projects.”

The same features helped Columbia University makes its decision to also adopt RingCentral – and, with a competitive cloud communications market, it’s safe to assume feedback from Teachers College made the decision easier.

Edited by Erik Linask

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