A common question on Request for Proposals (RFP) that many vendors must answer, and not just telecom but nearly any RFP that involves hardware or physical equipment, is “where is the product manufactured?” When clients are looking for a new phone system, this question is almost always asked as well. There are various reasons for why a company or agency would desire to know this. Sometimes it is a perception that product made in a particular country may be “cheap” other times it may be a government agency that lends particular weight to equipment manufactured in the USA. It is not always an easy question to answer as some product may be made in one place and the rest in another. We here at CSM decided that it would be helpful to our clients to create a list of some of the telecom or phone system manufacturers CSM sells, services, and installs along where their product is made.
- Avaya– Most Avaya product is primarily manufactured in mainland China and India.
Formerly, the company produced product in the USA, Ireland, and Australia, but beginning in 2003, the process of moving production to China was begun and was completed around 2005. R&D is still accomplished in the USA, however, and is based out of California.
- Comdial– Amazingly, Comdial was one of the few phone systems designed, researched, and built in the USA. The company did go bankrupt in 2004, but previous to that all work was done in Charlottesville, Virginia. The product was very well made, as you would expect from an American company manufacturing states-side, but unfortunately the company allowed the technology to move quicker than their research or business plan allowed. We have many customers still utilizing Comdial equipment which rarely has a problem. Most replacements are due to growth or adding equipment that is no longer readily available.
- Nortel– Meridian, Norstar, and Nortel were all brands from the now defunct Nortel Networks. Initially, all manufacturing and assembly was completed in Canada where the
company was headquartered. In the early 2000’s this work was moved to Mexico and China, following suit of other manufacturers. The company was acquired in 2008 by Avaya and production was shifted to China, and then completely discontinued by 2012.
- Siemens– Founded in the late 1800’s, Siemens is one of the world’s premier manufacturing giants, making everything from household appliances to power generation systems, to high speed trains. Most of the recent Siemens product lines such as HiPath, HiCom, or OpenScape, were made in either Germany or Brazil. R&D was done in Germany or Eastern European countries such as Bulgaria and Greece. In 2008 Siemens’ telecom division was acquired by American investment firm, the Gores Group, and by 2014 had been re-branded as “Unify.”
- ShoreTel– ShoreTel, founded in Sunnvale, California in 1996, initially manufactured in mainland China and also Taiwan. R&D was done in the California HQ. Beginning in 2012, R&D was moved to Austin, Texas. Also taking place that year, a drive to bring home product
assembly to the USA was begun so that as of 2014, assembly and manufacturing substantially takes place in the USA, a major accomplishment for any company.
- TransTel– Different from the other companies on our list, TransTel is not an American company, but rather is a Chinese firm which operates in the USA. As such, manufacturing is done in mainland China. R&D is done in that company as well.
CSM is proud of the products that we represent, no matter where they were made. The manufacturing process is a global enterprise in today’s marketplace, so even products with the “Made in America” label are rarely composed or parts exclusively from the United States. CSM can help guide your company with their purchase of a new phone system no matter what your feelings on place of assembly. Contact CSM today for more information!