A STAPLE SIGHT of any Olympic Games is a sprinter blindly reaching out behind him trying to grab hold of a baton being passed by a teammate only to stumble, or slip, sending the object falling to the ground and sending years of training and the hopes and dreams of a nation clattering away across the track.
Winning the relay events is more than just speed, it's about collaboration. It's about working together, in sync, to help create a unit where the sum of the parts is greater than the individuals - see the British triumph in Athens 2004 against the US team as a great example.
Collaboration as part of organising the Olympics is no different, with the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (LOCOG) having to work across sites, cross-departments and over numerous mediums to ensure all aspects of the Games' planning and delivery come together.
At the heart of this need to collaborate sits technology provided by Cisco, in the form of its Webex tool, which as part of its remit as a major sponsor to the Games is providing 6,500 licences to LOCOG, most of which are now in use as the opening ceremony approaches.
The organisation has used this collaboration technology to help it work internally and with nations from across the world to organise the world's greatest sporting event, as Akshay Thakur, Cisco's business development manager for London 2012, explained to The INQUIRER.
"LOCOG quickly realised they need more than just an audio platform, they needed to be able to work on documents, share plans together and ensure meetings they held were as productive as possible to help them stick to their timelines," he said.
"Webex was able to offer LOCOG a secure mechanism to conduct meetings with nations' Olympic committees, rather than having to rely on consumer-grade tools. It also ensures a consistent quality of service that other VoIP services can't match as it's a dedicated enterprise grade tool."
The chief information officer for LOCOG, Gerry Pennell, explained that these benefits have been of great help to the organisation.
"Webex gives us the ability to share documents and work together on common plans and common information and that really deepens the relationships," he said in a video discussing the organisation's use of Cisco's tools, embedded above.
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