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Grant Wood Area Education Agency
Request For Proposal
VoIP Telecommunications System

Request For Proposal       Request For Proposal

All questions must be submitted by March 11, 2009.
Questions can be posted here or submitted by e-mail to Alan Buck (

E-mail address

Questions Submitted

Notice to Vendors: Please review the questions and responses frequently. The responses to individual questions may be expanded, corrected or clarified when additional information becomes available.

Is there a voice diagram that can be shared?
GWAEA Response: No such diagram exists.
Do you have a preference of network switch? Or are you open to any manufacturer?
GWAEA Response: No preference. We have several years of experience and acquired knowledge with Cisco networking products.
Do you require all end-user Ethernet ports to be PoE cpapble? for example at the 33rd Ave facility you need 96 Ethernet ports, do you prefer all 96 ports to provide PoE so if any IP pohone gets moved it will always have power? Or, if there were only 48 IP phones would you require 48 ports to be PoE and all other ports to be non-PoE?
GWAEA Response: At a minimum, we need PoE to handle the PoE devices in your proposal. Additional PoE capacity would be a plus.
Do you require 10/100/1000 Mbps for end-user Ethernet ports?
GWAEA Response: This has been answered. See below.
Do you require redundant powersupplies for the Ethernet switches?
GWAEA Response: We prefer redundant power supplies.
Do you require intercom or overhead paging in the new solution? is there an existing system in place? Please describe the system.
GWAEA Response: No existing system. We do not anticipate needing these features. If such functionality exists as a “standard feature” (i.e. no incremental cost to the solution proposed) identify it as a included benefit.
Do you have any requirements for music on hold devices such as integrating existing MoH solutions?
GWAEA Response: No. If such functionality exists as a “standard feature” (i.e. no incremental cost to the solution proposed) identify it as a included benefit.
Are there any specific ACD requirements for this project? Do you currently have an IVR and if so can you provide any details on how that functions?
GWAEA Response: See responses below.
Will categoryy 5 or higher cabling be available for all IP endpoints?
GWAEA Response: Yes. 6th St. is being rewired with cat 6, 33rd Ave is mix of cat 5 and cat 5e, Holiday Rd. is cat 5e.
What i the version of operating system on the end-user workstations/mobile devices?
GWAEA Response: Primarily Windows XP Pro SP2 or SP3. We have a few Mac users (approximately 20) on OS X v3 or above.
Are there any additional perpherals for integration such as credit card machines, postage meters, cordless phones, dialup modems, etc.?
GWAEA Response: None that have been specifically identfied at this time. We may be interested in some of these features when we know more about them.
Are there any specific requirements for ther desktop endpoints and attendant consoles such as digital display, number of line buttons, etc.
GWAEA Response: These requirements have not been identified at this time. Identify the standard features of a “base model” solution. More advanced models may also be proposed, but the incremental costs of moving to such a model should be clearly identified.
Would you break out the number of Ethernet ports needed per closet at the 6th St. facility (you mentioned in the QA that you have 552 portsspread over 3 wiring closets)?
GWAEA Response: See response below.
Can you please provide a breakdown of phonequantities by location?
GWAEA Response: See responses to questions below.
Do any of the IP phones need to be 10/100/1000 Mbps capable?
GWAEA Response: Not that we are aware of.
Do you have available UPS battery backup by location? Do you require UPS battery backup by location to be included in the solution?
GWAEA Response: See responses below relating to generator and UPS. We have an APC SmartUPS 2200 in each wiring closet. Whether or not that is adequate depends on the solution you propose. Server cabinets have UPS, but we may need additional capacity depending on your proposal.
Do you have available rack space in each location?
GWAEA Response: We have a 2 post telco rack in each wiring closet which currently holds the patch panels, 4006 switches and other networking gear. We have some available space in server cabinets (12U to 16U), Whether these are adequate for the new implementation depends on the solution you propose.
How many Ethernet ports required for each closet at 6th (Main Location)? How many phones will be in each closet at 6th (Main Location)?
GWAEA Response: See response below relating to 6th St. closets. The number of phones coming from each closet is unknown at this time as reconstruction and rewiring of facility is not complete.
In 1.4 you mention that you have 540 DID extension and 500 individual mailboxes. Please explain the deference between the mailboxes and required end points. We need to understand what number to basis our design off of. The 290 end points in 1.3 or 500 mailboxes in 1.4.
GWAEA Response: The number of endpoints listed in section 1.3 is our best estimate of the MINIMUM required to furnish our 6th St facility which is under reconstruction from the 2008 flood. Your proposed solution may include replacing all equipment in all facilities, or it may incorporate some existing equipment. The number of endpoints by facility is given in the responses to other questions below. You might want to construct your proposal using these minimum numbers with incremental pricing for additional units.
How many voicemail ports are on your current Octel and does that amount seem adequate?
GWAEA Response: 24 ports. It has been adequate in that we seldom have occurrances of users being unable to access voice mail.
Is there a breakdown of ACD Agents and/or Supervisors at each location?
GWAEA Response: See response to question below regarding ACD.
Is there a need for the ACD Queues (groups) to operate over multiple locations?
GWAEA Response: See response to question below regarding ACD.
Can you provide a list of information and reports you would like to see provided by the statistical call analysis application?
GWAEA Response: Describe the basic reporting capabilites of your proposed solution. Additional reporting capabilities as well as any incremental costs of such additional reporting capabilities should be clearly identified as an option.
What capabilities should be provided by the IVR application, ie, would you like the application to be able to pull information from a data base and speak that back to a caller?
GWAEA Response: See responses below.
Please define the ACD requirements for GWAEA (simple hunt group capabilities vs. a fully functioning contact center, for example).
GWAEA Response: We do not operate a "call center" in the sense that a telemarketer does and we have no need for that type of application. We do need support for the hunt group, call transfer, forwarding, etc. functions of a typical office environment.
What is meant by “The main network backbone switches are dual (stacked) Cisco Catalyst 3750G (layer 3 with redundant supervisor engines)” in section 1.4, paragraph 8?
GWAEA Response: Two 24 port switches, Cisco part number WS-3750G-24TS-E. The SFP ports in these switches provide the fiber connections to the switches in the other wiring closets at the 6th St. facility.
Is GWAEA eligible to purchase off the State of Iowa “204, 206, 207, 208, 209 COMPUTER HARDWARE & PERIPHERALS, ACCESSORIES & SUPPLIES” contract?
GWAEA Response: Response from a representative of the Iowa Department of Administrative Services: "you are eligible to purchase through these contracts in lieu of a bid process."
Please confirm the address that RFP responses should be delivered to (4401 6th Street SW or 1120 33rd Avenue SW)?
GWAEA Response: The RFP must be submitted as specified in sections 2.11.2 through 2.11.4 to the 33rd Ave. address. Our 6th St. facility is presently closed due to flood reconstruction. Administrative offices are temporarily located at the 33rd Ave. address.
In section 4.3, would you please elaborate on what is required for performance reporting, management and diagnostics (real-time vs. historical, etc.).
GWAEA Response: Describe the basic reporting, management and diagnostics capabilites of your proposed solution. Additional capabilities as well as any incremental costs of such additional reporting capabilities should be clearly identified as an option.
Also in section 4.3, could you provide a example of what is desired for security levels / security administration?
GWAEA Response: Describe the basic security features included in your proposed solution. Additional security capabilities as well as any incremental costs of such additional capabilities should be clearly identified as an option.
GWAEA currently has 500 voicemail boxes; is this number expected to stay the same, grow, or shrink?
GWAEA Response: Some growth should be expected.
How many users does GWAEA expect to have registered to the new phone system (RFP calls for approximately 288 handsets / softphones)?
GWAEA Response: We have approximately 515 employees. Almost all of them have a voice mail box. Prior to the 2008 flood about 350 of them had DID extensions. These numbers will likely change as we adapt to a new building design resulting from the flood reconstruction.
It appears that there are about twice as many DID’s as handsets….should we assume that each voicemail box has its own DID number?
GWAEA Response: Some voice mail boxes currently do not have a DID. It is expected that with a new IP solution, some of these (home office, mobile) may be changed to have a DID.
What e-mail platform does GWAEA use?
GWAEA Response: Question has been answered. See below.
Does GWAEA use Citrix?
GWAEA Response: No.
Can you provide some more clarification on the types of ports needed? For the replacement network equipment are you looking for all 100 Mbps in the access layer or 10/100/1000 Mbps capability?
GWAEA Response: 100 Mbps should be adequate for most endpoints. 10/100/1000 would be a plus.
Can you provide some more detail in terms of number of analog ports/fax machines in use by location?
GWAEA Response: Question has been answered. See below.
Can you provide some more detail in terms of number of IP phones by location?
GWAEA Response: See question below regarding users by location.
can you provide more detail in how the network closets are connected to each other at the 6th Street location? Are the 3 closets home run connected back to a central MDF? And what is the connection type (MMF or Copper?)?
GWAEA Response: Question has been answered. See below.
Do all switches need to be managed?
GWAEA Response: Yes.
Do all switches need to be PoE enabled?
GWAEA Response: Existing Access Points (5 at 6th St., 2 at 33rd Ave, 1 at Holiday Road) are POE. We have no other POE devices currently. If your proposal includes POE endpoints, then sufficient POE switch capacity needs to be included. There will be endpoint connections in each switch location (wiring closet).
Can the two primary attendant consoles be software and not hardware?
GWAEA Response: Our current system has a hardware console and that is what we are familiar with. We would be willing to consider a software solution if it has the required functionality.
The 126 “basic or reduced functionality endpoints (break room / guest use)”, do these phones need to receive calls?
GWAEA Response: For clarity, these are basic function endpoints that need to place/recieve calls.
At the 6th Street location, can I get a port count per closet?
GWAEA Response: 6th St. is currently being rewired with category 6 as part of our flood reconstruction project. All existing type 3 and category 5 wiring is being removed. The numbers below are our best estimates, rounded up to increments of 24: Closet A - 120, Closet B - 192, Closet C - 216
At the 6th Street location, what is the current link(s) between the closets? Also, what’s the available facility cabling between closets?
GWAEA Response: (See related question below.) Each wiring closet has a fiber distribution shelf terminating in SC connectors (12 strand cable, 6 strands terminated, 6 not terminated). These all go back to the main distribution shelf in Closet A at the east end of the building, near the telco demarc point.
Do any of the facilities have generators? If not, then what is the required amount of runtime required for backup power?
GWAEA Response: 6th St. has a standby generator with closed transition switch. Generator transition time is less than 1 minute. 33rd Ave. and Holiday Road do not have generators. Run time should be at least 30 minutes.
What input voltage is available at each site?
GWAEA Response: 6th St. - 208V and 110V. 33rd Ave - 110V, Holiday Road - 110V.
Will the AEA be responsible for high voltage requirements?
GWAEA Response: AEA will provide required AC recepticals correctly wired into AC power panels.
What is your current e-mail server solution? Also, what is your e-mail client and version?
GWAEA Response: (See related questions below.) Current Ipswitch version is 9.21. Most clients are Outlook 2003.
What type of fiber are you using between closets MM/SM? If it is MM, is it 62.4 micron or 50 micron? What type of connectors on each end in the fiber panel?
GWAEA Response: Unknown. Cable is marked Lucent LGBC-0120-LPX. We think it is MM. It terminates in each rack in a fiber distribution shelf with SC connectors.
You mention that you are wanting an IVR solution – do you currently have one and if so how is it being used. If you don’t have one what are you looking to use it for?
GWAEA Response: We don't currently have IVR implemented. Describe the basic IVR features included in your solution. Additional IVR feature / functionality as well as any incremental costs of such functionality should be clearly identified as an option.
You mention web interfaces – what type of web interfaces are you looking for; a. interacte with the phone system b. interact with other application
GWAEA Response: Describe the basic web capabilities and interfaces included in your proposed solution. Additional capabilities as well as any incremental costs of such additional web interfaces should be clearly identified as an option
How many Voice mail boxes are going to be needed.
GWAEA Response: 550 (approximate)
How many integrated messaging (VM tied into Exchange) are you going to require.
GWAEA Response: We don't presently have Exchange Server implemented.
What is the current release of exchange and server
GWAEA Response: We don't presently have Exchange Server implemented. Our mail server is Ipswitch IMail. We may be interested in changing to Exchange Server depending on the unified messaging capabilites of the proposed VOIP solution.
Remote workers – are they primarly working out of their home office or on the road? Please explain
GWAEA Response: Both. We have some employees that home office. The majority of our professional staff have field assignments in one or more of the school districts and private schools in our 7 county service area.
Does the current Siemen system support Qsig if so what level.
GWAEA Response: From Siemens engineer: "Your system will support the current level of QSIG."
Are you planning on keeping your 540 DID’s or scaling some of them back, if so explain.
GWAEA Response: There may be some adjustment depending on the capabilities of proposed solution.
Do you require centralized deployment or de-centralized.
GWAEA Response: Centralized management of system.
How many end users are at each location.
GWAEA Response: Approximate numbers prior to 2008 flood: 6th St. - 280, 33rd Ave. - 50, Holiday Rd. - 100. Note that many of our professional staff have assignments in the school districts and private schools in our 7 county service area, and are in the office on an occasional or irregular basis.
How many analog CO lines are there currently at each location, and what is their usage? How many analog extensions (fax, modems, etc.) at each location, and what is their usage?
GWAEA Response: We have 16 analog lines for fax machines; 8 at 6th St., 6 at 33rd Ave., 2 at Holiday Road. We have 2 analog lines at 6th St. used in conference rooms for conference (speaker phone) calls or modem connection. We also have TDD service at 6th St. and at Holiday Rd.
We would like some clarification on section 1.4, the first two paragraphs of the NOTE. How many total T1’s do you currently have? The first paragraph says that there are 3, but the next paragraph references 2.5. Are there 3 or 6 total T1’s?
GWAEA Response: The information on the RFP is incorrect. There are 3 T1's for trunks, two at 6th St., one at Holiday Road. The 6th St. T1's. have 48 trunks; 28 outbound only, 20 in/out. The Holiday Road T1 has 12 trunks; 2 out only, 10 in/out. Additionally, there are two point-to-point T1's connecting 6th St. to 33rd Ave. and Holiday Road. These contain 24 voice channels each. It is expected that the pont-to-point T1's will be eliminated in favor of the Ethernet IP connections in a VOIP solution.
Would it be possible for you to provide a diagram of the current network infrastructure and connectivity at all three locations, including wireless?
GWAEA Response: Visio diagram will be e-mailed on request.
Could you provide an endpoint count per location based on the criteria given in section 1.3 of the RFP?
GWAEA Response: Prior to the 2008 flood, the approximate numbers were 280 at 6th St, 50 at 33rd Ave and 100 at Holiday Road. These numbers will change as we complete our reconstruction and facility redesign projects.
In section 1.3 there is a sentence “Vendors should include requisite switches in the RFP response”. Does this mean that we should include the edge switches in the pricing and should we base them on the ports shown in section 1.4?
GWAEA Response: We recognize that our Catalyst 4006 switches are at “end of life”, are not suitable for VOIP application and need to be replaced as part of the VOIP implementation. Switch replacement should be included in the proposed solution. The switch replacement needs to cover our port requirements for non VOIP devices (printers, workstations without phones, etc.) as well as VOIP appliances. Minimum number of ports required: 552 at 6th St facility (spread over 3 wiring closets), 96 at 33rd Ave facility, 144 at Coralville facility.
Are there any extra switch ports that will be required for growth or for locations that may not have a computer now, but will have a VoIP phone?
GWAEA Response: Additional switch capacity and switch expandability options will be considered when evaluating the proposals. Additional switch capacity could be listed as an optional item in the proposal. See question above for port numbers.
Do you want us to include any core or backbone switches, routers, access points, firewalls, etc. that we would recommend upgrading?
GWAEA Response: We believe our existing 7206 router, 3750 backbone switches, 1130 access points, 3030 VPN concentrator, and PIX 515 firewall are adequate. However, if you recommend replacement or upgrade of any of these components for successful implementation of your VOIP solution, that upgrade or replacement should be included in your proposal.
Is there an possibility that the GWAEA will purchase their own Network electronics or will it be purchased in the contract with the winning bidder?
GWAEA Response: Either scenario is possible depending on the proposed solution. It is our assumption that there will be advantages in pricing and network integrity if the switch replacement is bundled with the VOIP solution.