Introduction To Line Telecommunications


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14. Installation

  14.1 - Fact Finding 14.5 - Testing
  14.2 - Site Survey 14.6 - Customer Acceptance
  14.3 - Equipment Specification 14.7 - Training
14.4 - Installation

14. Installation

This section outlines the steps that should be taken when planning and installing a telephone system. This requires co-operation from the sales team and engineering staff working together with the customer to ensure the best possible system is provided. The larger or more complex the system being planned the more important this stage becomes.

14.1 - Fact Finding

The initial stage in this process is very important. It is at this point that all parties can influence the parameters that will be used to specify the system to be installed.

14.1.1 - What The Customer Wants

As the first step the sales persons and the customer must talk and a clear picture of what the customer wants from the system be established. This includes the system size, types of extension, networks (including computer and Internet) to which it will be connected, features that the customer believes important and those that they would like to have, the physical characteristics of the customer’s site and proposed budget.

From this discussion the sales team will be able to generate a draft specification, which will outline the system, the customer requires.

14.1.2 - What The Customer Needs

Following the meeting with the customer the next step is to send an experienced installation engineer to survey the site and for the sales person to examine the proposed requirements closely to verify their suitability to the actual customer requirements.

In many cases the customer will request features and facilities which they have heard about but do not need or in some cases fully understand. This adds unnecessary complexity and cost to the system and are best avoided if possible.

From the survey and the examination of the ‘wants’ list the engineer and sales person will be able to assess the true requirements of the customer.

14.1.3 - Written Requirements

Subsequent to the customer meeting, site survey and analysis of the findings it is often possible to decide which system or range of systems will be suitable for the customer. It is expedient to produce a written requirement, which proposes a system and addresses the requests of the customer. This should be drawn up by the sales and engineering staffs concerned to ensure that all proposals put forward are available using the range of systems being considered for the task.

Where the original requests are contradictory or the proposed system varies from the proposed system at the first meeting clear reasons should be given for the differences. Similarly additional equipment and recommendations should be explained.

This report must then be discussed with the customer, with any changes arising from the discussion being highlighted to avoid later confusion. When both parties are happy that all requirements have been addressed they should formally agree that the report be used as the basis for creating a complete system specification.

14.1.4 - Written Specifications

Using the written and agreed requirements the engineering staff can now specify the system, extensions and support equipment required. They will also have the results of the site survey, which will allow the positioning, wiring and main system location to be determined.

The specification will give a detailed equipment list and allow costing of the hardware and installation to be accurately calculated. It will also cover much of the installation planning for power and wiring saving time later.

14.1.5 - Setting Milestones

Once the requirements have been agreed and the specifications drawn up the installation process can be planned and costed. Doing this will allow ‘milestones’ to be set as the phases of installation progress.
Milestones are targets within the project as a whole. For a small system there will only be an end milestone, but for larger systems there can be more. If a larger system is considered some typical milestones might be:

• Agreement of all features, specifications and costs
• Installation of the network lines to the customer premises
• Installation of the site wiring
• Supply and fitting of system hardware
• Programming and commissioning
• Test compliance with the specifications
• Customer staff training
• Customer acceptance and payment

Each milestone will have an end date associated with it and an overall completion date given. As each is reached it can be a good idea to have the supplier and customer sign off and date the milestone so that the progress of the project as a whole is known to all parties.

14.1.6 - Presenting The Solution

The reports produced from the specification, costing and milestone descriptions need to be combined into a single report, which describes the whole proposed solution.

Where this differs from the requirements agreed previously there must be clear reasons given. Normally only changes that enhance the system for no extra cost or reduce the overall cost will be acceptable to the customer, so care should be taken not to vary from the agreed requirements.

The report is then presented to the customer and agreed. This will be the last chance to vary any requirements before proceeding. Once accepted the customer should place a formal order with the vendor.



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Extracted from

Introduction To Line Telecommunications
Copyright Panasonic Business Systems UK Ltd 2000