Unified Communications (UC) is not an acronym for a single product; instead, it is a set of products working together to offer you a unified, consistent user-experience and user interface across various devices and media files. When your UC solutions are provided through the cloud, it then becomes Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). Deploying an UCaaS solution in your organization has a huge positive impact RoI on company-specific processes.
This is true for organizations of all sizes and complexity, and the adoption of UCaaS solutions has moved into the mainstream realm. However, before deploying, it is critical that organizations understand the possible benefits they are likely to reap.
One of the biggest challenges affecting premises-based applications is the scaling of the administrative tasks and management functions. These tasks include applying software patches, updating software features, changing user profiles and setting up new users. For premises-based solutions, you would have to repeat these tasks several times; for example, if you have 20 locations and need to apply software patches, you would need to do it 20 times, increasing chances of misconfiguration or human error, as well as wasting critical resources and time.
With a hosted UC solution, all your management and administrative functionalities are in a central location so any tasks you carry out are completed organization-wide at once. In addition, since most hosted UCs use Web browsers, there is no need for carrying out frequent user device upgrades. Centralizing your most critical administrative and management functions can save your organization hundreds, if not thousands, in terms of hours and money.
Improved Disaster Recovery and Continuity
Manmade problems, power outages or natural disasters can strike any of your remote offices, the resources in them or people there at any time without warning. Unified communications and collaboration tools ensure that workers have continued access to the organization’s system via various devices or any network connection to ensure that your operations do not halt. Since these solutions are often used for facilitating communication with external partners and groups, any unavailability can result to a company-wide negative outcome that will affect all your other security protocols like .net logging best practices.
Since hosted UC solutions are not tied down to a specific location, people across your organization can use any infrastructure they have to get access to company critical files. This will greatly improve your organization’s continuity plan. In addition, hosting communications solutions reduces the need for a dedicated disaster recovery location; and your staff can continue functioning from wherever they are, including at home.
Historically, communications infrastructure is usually deployed one piece at a time; each location would have its own PBX and voicemail features. Migrating to IP-based communications has seen organizations repeat this model, seriously limiting the deployment’s flexibility.
A hosted UC solution provides your organization with the ultimate deployment flexibility. Once implemented, the solution can reach any employee on any device, in any location and any network. You no longer have to deal work around the limitations of technology; instead, you concentrate on deploying applications that you consider critical for your organization and choose what group of users have access.
It is clear that hosted Unified Communications far outperform any premises-based application in terms of agility, flexibility, capability and cost (the list can go on and on). It is highly possible that the key criteria you use in your organization to make decisions is based on the impact any cloud-based or hosted solutions will have in day-to-day operations. Therefore, the first step to moving ahead is meeting with industry key players so you can have a clear picture of what Unified Communications solutions will work best for your organization.