There's been lots of talk recently about Unified Communications, from
the news about the massive
acquisition from Broadsoft from the ongoing discussions
manage the ever-increasing number remote work teams.
If you're not up to speed about the whole Unified Communications
piece, you might be wondering if you're missing out on anything.
The easiest way to tell if you should even give unified
communications a second thought is to look out for key signs in your
organizations, such as customer service problems or
communications inefficiencies. These can sometimes be hard to spot, so
we've broken them out below:
[Note: this is part 1 of our unified communications series. To read
the full series, download the White Paper,
Clear Signs You Need Unified Communications]
Sign #1: Your Remote Workforce is Growing
If your company is hiring more freelancers and remote workers, it
isn’t alone. A
2016 Gallup poll shows that 43 percent of employees work
remotely at least part of the time, and this percentage has increased
yearly since 2012.
The main challenges in having a remote workforce is establishing a
sense of presence for distant offices. Since unified communications
integrates multiple technologies and various devices, it closes the
presence gap at every possible point, taking the “remote” out of
remote office. Although IT management has traditionally been an
obstacle for remote work, UC and Hosted UC are easy to set up for
virtual workers. This allows businesses to ramp up operations quickly
using freelance resources.
Sign #2: Your IT Staff is Overloaded
You can tell your IT department has too much to do when employees are
burning out, deadlines are not getting met, and important projects are
sidelined indefinitely because of existing workload.
Under these conditions, outsourcing telephony management is a good
way to free up IT resources. Hosted UC systems – which increasingly
earn larger shares of annual IT budgets – are a service-based approach
to UC. As in most hosted services, maintenance tasks such as updates,
are performed by the provider. New users are usually requisitioned
through a central portal, which is done with just a few clicks.
Non-hosted UC systems are easier for IT to manage as well, since
changes, updates, and implementations are all centralized and
consolidated. Provisioning new users no longer takes multiple steps,
and IT even has more control over how network resources are distributed.
Sign #3: You Are Outgrowing Your Old Office
Just like households, businesses can accumulate lots of clutter over
the years. Uprooting from an old office is an ideal time to review new
telephony solutions and to sunset old phones and hardware.
The low capital costs of adopting new UC or Hosted UC system make it
an attractive option as moving-costs mount. Having a new phone system
that is easy to set up and deploy helps IT focus on the other areas of
business during the move such as backing up data, maintaining
regulatory compliance during the transition, and handling the
inevitable list of office IT issues.
Sign #4: Your Efficiency is Slipping
Communications errors, lack of employee accessibly, and disparate
platforms are all obstacles that make communicating inefficient. Even
seemingly small events, like missed calls between employees, can add
up quickly. According to a Harvey Nash research survey, organizations
with UC saved an average of 32 minutes of productive time per day
simply because staff were able to reach each other on the first try.
In fact, improved collaboration is the single largest driver of UC
adoption. In an Information Week survey, 62 percent of those queried
said that getting employees to work together better was the main
focus, which is even greater than improving customer interactions or
reducing travel expenses.