Just 12 months after launching a converged communications practice, Getronics expects the division to account for 30 per cent of its overall business for the recently concluded financial year.
National manager of converged communications, Rob McCabe, said unit revenue had been driven by the addition of more than 20 customers with 200-300 seats. Recent wins included several public sector contracts, such as the NSW Attorney General's office and the Federal Court of Australia. Managed services represent about 60 per cent of Getronics business.
The integrator's Cisco-based converged communications practice was launched in August last year. It is aimed at addressing the need for converged IP network skills in the medium business market.
McCabe said many of its new clients previously used Nortel. Major competitors in the Cisco space included Dimension Data, Cerulean and Alphawest.
He said 40 per cent of its sales stemmed from Cisco advanced technology products. This group encompasses IP telephony, wireless LAN, optical and storage networking and security. Despite strong growth, McCabe said it was still a challenge to quantify the financial benefits of a converged network to potential customers. Part of the problem was getting users to understand savings beyond call costs.
"The way the telco market has gone, customers will not be getting a return on investment through toll bypass or the phone calls," he said. "You have to look at productivity gains using new IP applications on the desktop or integrating phones and user details."
To assist with its solution sales, Getronics had developed a consulting service called TCO.
McCabe said it looked at hard costs and productivity gains brought about by an IP network and translated these into financial terms.
He predicted the converged communications group would represent half of Getronics' total sales in the next 12-18 months.
"This is a massive focus area for us. And it's not just convergence - we are partnering with Cisco in security to expand our abilities in that space," McCabe said.
"We also want to leverage our Microsoft capabilities."