3CX Cuts Soaring Communications Costs at AirFrance Russia

AirFrance Representation for Russia and CIS, part of the French flag carrier, handles passenger travel, cargo transportation and aircraft maintenance for the region. The company offers nearly 70 flights a week to Moscow and Saint Petersburg from Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol, along with 112 flights each week to and from Saint Petersburg, Kiev, Ukraine, Yerevan, Armenia and Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Moscow, Russia - February 16, 2008: Airbus A318 aircraft arrival at Moscow Airport, Russia. Operated by Air France airline, it is used for short distance flights within Europe. Air France is France's biggest airline. The A318 is a shorter version of the Airbus A320, Airbus's most successful aircraft.

With more than 100 employees, AirFrance Russia was seeing increasing communications traffic and expenses. The company’s legacy Alcatel PBX cost about $22,000 per year to run. And it did not provide mobility for workers who needed to stay in touch with team members while working remotely.

AirFrance Russia also wanted to connect up its three branch offices in other countries to cut the cost of international interoffice calls.

Manuel Caffiaux, Telecom Department head, shopped around for an advanced system. He looked at Alcatel and Asterisk, but found the former too expensive and the latter too difficult to adapt. Caffiaux chose 3CX PRO Edition:

“3CX PRO brings us the full functionality of modern telecom services with lower investment costs than competitor solutions, and it is easy to configure to our business needs,” Caffiaux said.

Smooth Take-off

Installation was a quick hop thanks to piloting by Moscow-based 3CX Partner ICE Partners Soft.

3CX PRO is based on open standards and runs on mainstream software, so it was easy for AirFrance Russia’s IT staff to integrate with its own hardware and software.

3CX took control of the company’s 65 Yealink IP Phones, two E1 data lines and VoIP gateway, and had the system up and running in minutes.

Soft Landing

“3CX PRO bridged AirFrance Russia’s remote offices with one system,” Caffiaux said, “and this very effectively cut expenses for international calls.”

Lowest-cost call routing enabled the company to sharply cut all its phone expenses. Call management covering all of the company’s locations was simplified, thanks to 3CX’s easy-to-use routing controls. At the same time, interoffice calls became free using IP telephony.

And monitoring and managing calls became easy to do, working with the 3CX Switchboard and Wallboard.

“3CX PRO also allows any employee to work outside of the office and still be a part of the team,” Caffiaux added.

3CX PRO provides total mobility: Workers anywhere in the world can now call, chat, message and join in video conferences for up to 25 people, and all communications are entirely free.

Each worker can be reached on their extension via the 3CX softphones or smartphone clients wherever they are.

The overall result has been a massive and total upgrade in quality of communication for AirFrance Russia, with its leapfrog from a traditional PBX to cutting-edge 3CX technology.