Sametime? Maybe Some Other Time.
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
July 24, 2018

Sametime? Maybe Some Other Time.

Score 1 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with IBM Sametime

IBM Sametime is used as the standard for text-based chat across my entire organization. Our IT department has, in the past, tried to standardize on it for video teleconferencing as well, but it performed so poorly that the idea was quickly dropped. It is intended to serve as a solution for text-based conversations amongst colleagues, where the phone, or video might be inappropriate, say, for quick questions.

  • Sametime integrates well into my company's other text based communication software (IBM Notes). As a result, it is easy to begin a chat with another employee right from within Notes.
  • Sametime has been deployed across the organization, which means it's also the lowest common denominator for communication. It is almost always the case that I can get in touch with someone via Sametime.
  • Sametime CAN be (but not by default) configured to save conversations with others for later reference. This is particularly handy during technical conversations.
  • Sametime's audio and video chat features are horrendous, and years behind their competitors in usability, functionality, and reliability.
  • Sametime's default configuration is idiotic - stealing focus away from active windows, not saving chats for later reference, etc. If you plan to roll it out, make sure to get an administrator that knows what they're doing!
  • Despite the fact that it was rolled out organization wide - some people simply refuse to use it because they hate it so much. As a result, it even fails as being the lowest common denominator for communications - that common method still ends up being the phone in those instances.
  • As I've mentioned throughout the review, it covers the majority of our employee base as a lowest common denominator communications method. That's handy.
  • Sametime is pretty terrible, but as a result, when we switched to an open-office plan, people get up and talk to each other, rather than having to use Sametime to get a question answered.
  • Sametime has also demonstrated how behind the times my organization is with IT infrastructure, and has helped drive the conversation towards modern tools.
Text chat is text chat. It's not a technically hard problem to solve. It's when you try and move out of text chat into more fully featured applications that allow for audio or video calling, transcripts, etc, it becomes apparent that the developers on Sametime gave up a long time ago. In my organization, Slack has nearly completely replaced Sametime for any and all purposes that Sametime used to fulfill.
Sametime is well suited for very quick conversations, where you know the person is an active Sametime user. It also serves as an easy way to reach out to someone you may not know when looking for an answer to a quick question, as they are likely to be a Sametime user. Do not, under any circumstances, attempt to use Sametime for Audio or Video chat. The quality and reliability are horrendous.

HCL Sametime (formerly from IBM) Feature Ratings

Hosted PBX
Not Rated
Multi-level Interactive Voice Response (IVR)
Not Rated
User templates
Not Rated
Call reports
Not Rated
Directory of employee names
Not Rated
Answering rules
Not Rated
Call recording
Not Rated
Call park
Not Rated
Call screening
Not Rated
Message alerts
Video conferencing
Audio conferencing
Mobile app for iOS
Not Rated
Mobile app for Android
Not Rated