Unified Communications and Enterprise Collaboration A Happy MarriageFor years, unified communications (UC) struggled to become an integrated part of enterprise collaboration—devices and software were often disparate, unable to mesh into a single system. When they were incorporated, it was often in a limited way, at best. This largely placed them outside of business-based collaboration, and the organizations who couldn’t come to terms with this “struggle” were left woefully behind their competitors when it came to current technology adoption.

Today, new developments make it possible to truly merge UC with enterprise collaboration, and the results are a business owners’ dream. So, why are some businesses still hesitant to explore the happy marriage of unified communications and improved enterprise collaboration?

Why Don’t Modern Enterprises Make Full Use of Unified Communications?

There have been many issues around unified communication adoption that have held back some corporations from taking the plunge. On a whole, change is a big fear for many, especially when faced with the need to re-train entire teams on the day to day use of brand new processes and systems. Training aside, putting these brand new processes in place also costs money, and many companies can’t see the value in investing in new services when the “old way of doing things” works just as well. The problem is, it doesn’t. According to Gartner, embracing unified communications and collaboration “…enables employees and workgroups to use appropriate communication modalities to collaborate in real time, leading to improved productivity and operational effectiveness in the workplace. And, as itbusinessedge.com points out in a recent article, the cost savings resulting from incorporating unified communications into your enterprise collaboration are very real:

  • Forty-nine percent of user organizations saved up to 20 minutes per employee daily by reaching workers on the first try.
  • Fifty-four percent of user organizations saved up to 20 minutes per employee daily by escalating IM chats into phone calls.
  • Fifty percent of user organizations saved up to 20 minutes per employee daily by escalating IM chats into Web conferences.

What Changed to Allow This?

Software as a System (SaaS) is one of the driving forces behind the marriage of UC and business. SaaS is a system in which a 3rd party vendor hosts UC and other software, creating technical unity passed on to the enterprise.

Why Couldn’t Enterprises Do This on Their Own? 

Theoretically they could, but the cost of skilled technicians, 24 hour maintenance, in-house application development, and the cost to purchase hardware was prohibitive to most. By outsourcing, businesses of all sizes can now enjoy the benefits and the flexibility that comes with connecting and partnering with a qualified and experienced UCC managed serviced provider.

What Does This Mean for Enterprises?

  • Easy access. Installation through SaaS is almost nonexistent, as users often connect through a browser. The software is generally intuitive, so no extensive training is required.
  • Low Maintenance. All maintenance and software updates are performed externally through the provider, making the service affordable to the business.
  • No advanced technical training. New users can be added quickly, with little to no technical skill required. Gone are the days of waiting for an overworked IT specialist to make all the necessary changes to add a new user to half a dozen different programs. Now, business can keep moving little to no interruption.
  • Members of the enterprise can use all tools from any location, including their home or mobile device. Greater flexibility means greater productivity.

How Will Integration of UC Improve the Enterprise?

The ease of use and access to unified communication systems advances collaboration within the enterprise. Team members communicate with each other in real time, in a universally accessible format from anywhere, at any time. File and document sharing can also happen virtually, and via a central hub, allowing for better security measures and less risk of loss or duplication.

This sort of unified collaboration provides enterprises with increased efficiency, increased productivity, and, because of its flexible nature, increased employee satisfaction.

Technical limitations and software incompatibilities as well as the need for a full, on-site team of dedicated technicians has, for decades, held many corporations back from adopting unified communications and all it can offer.

Today, as unified communication technology continues to advance and evolve, so will enterprise collaboration, leading to increased growth and brighter futures for businesses of any size.

At Advanced AV we empower live meetings and remote collaboration by deploying the technology that helps your organization connect, communicate and engage with its customers, employees and stakeholders. Connect with us to find out more about how Advanced AV can help you achieve your business and technology goals.

 

Photo Credit: Plantronics PR via Compfight cc