Kitsap County CENCOM is a public safety organization providing 911 services and dispatching for the entire Kitsap County area.
These 911 dispatching services depend on radio network communication between dispatchers, police officers, firefighters and EMTs. With lives on the line every day, it's critical for every part of their network to maintain total reliability.
This is why Tim Simonson and Ken Sala play such important role in CENCOM's team. As top communications center technicians, they work at Kitsap County's remote sites to ensure the communication systems that connect various safety organizations are up and running.
Wanting to expand their alarm coverage territory, Simonson and Sala needed a plan. Their goal was to maintain their current high level of network reliability and efficiency, while expanding to meet the demands for their services. "Our system is a 28 T1 microwave ring system, using one T1 around the ring for alarm and supervisory operations" said Simonson. "It's a closed system - only on our network."
"The cost of the upgrade to maintain an older system that had limited functionality was going to cost as much or more as it did to purchase a completely new system."
To bring in their T1 alarm and supervisory connection, CenCom plans to use Cisco routers and switches to bridge their network together. But first, they needed the right equipment to support their transport and alarm capacity needs within budget.
During their hunt for the right upgrade equipment, Simonson and Sala also looked for alarm remotes that would work with their existing SNMP Manager. "It was time to update our system, and the cost to upgrade our current system was astronomical," said Simonson. "So we went looking for other solutions."
"We have other vendors - it's hard to get any response out of them. Documentation was hard to find, their websites were unreadable."
Kitsap County had big cost incentives for moving away from their previous vendor. It wasn't worth getting deeper into a product line from the same vendor that simply couldn't perform to their standards. "The cost of the upgrade to maintain an older system that had limited functionality was going to cost as much or more as it did to purchase a completely new system, including the routers, switches and DPS equipment," said Simonson.
Along with high maintenance fees, Simonson and Sala simply weren't getting the quality of service they deserved. "We have other vendors - it's hard to get any response out of them. Documentation was hard to find, their websites were unreadable," said Simonson. "Trying to find a way around that is like trying to find a golf ball in a snowstorm."
"When we looked at DPS Telecom's NetGuardian, we found the solution to ALL our alarm and monitoring issues."
These vendors proved to be unresponsive to their clients. "You might try to get some information, leave a message - And a week goes by and you don't hear anything. You don't even talk to a real person; you talk to a recording," said Simonson. "You get a response back, but it's an auto-response or a generic one."
When he began working with DPS, Simonson immediately recognized the difference of quick and responsive support from DPS. "When we looked at DPS Telecom's NetGuardian, we found the solution to ALL our alarm and monitoring issues," said Simonson.
"We're going to pull off every discrete point that we can find in every building we have."
With the NetGuardian 832A, Kitsap County CENCOM was able to expand their monitoring to cover their new larger network. The NetGuardian provided the capacity and functionality that they were looking for. "There will be a standard DTMF connection that we can put other devices on," said Simonson. With support for SNMP v2c informs and traps, they were even able to get more out of their existing equipment. "There'll be a lot of SNMP going back to our manager," said Simonson. "We're going to pull off every discrete point that we can find in every building we have."
"There are very few companies that you enjoy working with. I think the number one reason we enjoy it is the service and support that we get - It's continual and on-going."
Overall, Simonson was impressed by the service DPS provided to Kitsap, and is looking forward to a successful deployment. "There are very few companies that you enjoy working with," said Simonson. "I think the number one reason we enjoy it is the service and support that we get - It's continual and on-going."
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