Teliris Keeps Companies Up And Running


"The recent steam pipe explosion happened within 60 feet of our operations," says Marc Trachtenberg, Teliris CEO. "We got completely out of the building. We did have a number of injuries. All the while, none of our customers had interrupted service. That's because Teliris Telepresence is designed to not only be cost effective, but also be a hardened platform. You can rely on this to run your business. Our architecture and the distributed nature of our systems allowed us to continue to operate and provide service to our customers and resellers."

The Teliris Telepresence product offers a triangulated approach: redundant architectures are built into a global network, its operations ("ops") centers are also fully redundant and it has a unique, decentralized system. Customers can therefore operate constantly and consistently. Teliris has an established reseller program.

There are five reasons, primarily, that customers buy teleconferencing systems, says Trachtenberg. The first is the obvious reduction in travel costs. That, he says, is a powerful motivating factor. "However, when you ask a customer, 'How much did you save?' he might say, '$11 million the first year, $12 million the second,'" notes Trachtenberg. "So you say, 'Wow, isn't that great?' and he'll say 'Yes, but it doesn't match the savings we gained by using teleconferencing to fundamentally change how we do business.'"

Changing the way companies do business is the second reason companies turn to teleconferencing. "It's really a cultural change," Trachtenberg says. "Customers can cut development time dramatically, gain a faster time to market, and can save hundreds of millions of dollars."

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The third reason for teleconferencing is of a social nature. Because employees can save on travel time, they can use those hours to enrich their business as well as their personal lives. "I had a client who had business with offices in Zurich, London, Stamford and New York," Trachtenberg recalls. "He was able to teleconference them, interact naturally with those executives through our Telepresence product, and still be able to be home for his kid's ballet." The technology can help balance work-home issues without sacrificing business.

Today, companies are increasingly having to prepare for business continuity: What happens during a natural disaster? During a terrorist strike? Whatever the circumstances, businesses globally must plan for doing business when they cannot travel. Often, this leads them to setting up a teleconferencing system. For example, at the end of June, a terrorist plot was thwarted in London and travel in the area was briefly restricted. So, Trachtenberg thought, he would see an up tick in Telepresence usage in that region -- but it didn't happen.

"I called our customers and asked them if they were impacted by the travel situation. They said yes, but said that they use the [Telepresence] system regularly, so they didn't need to use it more," he explains. "Telepresence becomes organic part of the DNA of a company, so that it does substitute for people being there."

Businesses are more aware of environmental issues than they had previously been, which leads to the fifth reason companies opt to teleconference: The "greening" of corporate America. Because teleconferencing reduces traveling, it thereby reduces air emissions from burning jet fuel, ultimately reducing a user's carbon footprint.

Founded in 1999, Teliris has been deployed globally through various Fortune 500 customers. Trachtenberg notes that just as acceptance for teleconferencing has evolved, so too has the technology.

"Videoconferencing has been around for ages," Trachtenberg notes. "But mostly, videoconferencing had been and can still be 'pseudo-realistic.' Some of our competitors have limitations to how many people you can have in the room, how many sites you can hook up at once and even where you can be in the room. We have none of those restrictions. Telepresence is like you are there. It really gives an alternative to travel. And that's our key differentiator."