Unified communications solutions have proven themselves as critical components for business operations and customer service delivery. It's clear that more leaders want to take advantage of these systems and reap the benefits that they promise. However, it's also important to ensure that organizations are fully utilizing the UC tools to maximize advantages and return on investment. Let's take a look at a few tips to get the most from your UC system:
1. Don't make it complicated
With any new technology, IT departments and company leaders might approach it like a kid in a candy store. There are so many shiny new options, that it can be difficult to only pick a few. Before you know it, your solution is piled with features that users might not really need. The key to good UC strategy is to condense programs into one platform and get rid of any unnecessary or unvaluable tools.
In fact, research from Fuze found that 64 percent of surveyed IT leaders are looking to reduce the number of communications apps by adopting UC, BetaNews reported. This will reduce complexity and provide better visibility across the board. Some organizations are taking this a step further by moving communications completely into the cloud. Nearly two-thirds of respondents expect to be utilizing a UC system within the next five years and believe that video might replace voice-based communications in that time.
2. Track costs
Communications infrastructure can be made up of services of a number of different providers. As more programs are added under this umbrella, it becomes significantly harder to keep track of it all through legacy means like spreadsheets and manual accounting strategies. Organizations are utilizing 4.4 different services on average across three different providers, and 56 percent of decision-makers don't know how much they're spending for subscriptions and licenses to these systems, according to TechTarget. Some businesses are even considering using multiple collaboration systems for their needs.
Complexity is a major driver for rising costs and missed billing errors. To get the most out of UC tools, organizations must closely monitor each of their services down to the provider costs and employee usage. This type of information can reveal what features are being used most often and which ones are not longer providing expected value. Leaders can provision their staff accordingly, lower overall expenses and improve their bottom line.
"Have a UC system that interacts with and makes sense of data."
3. Use analytics and alerts
Data is being generated on an unprecedented scale from a variety of sources, giving businesses access to a plethora of structured and unstructured information. It will be important for organizations to have a UC system that interacts with and makes sense of this data to improve service delivery and maximize benefits. Certain analytics tools can now provide reports using near real-time information, ensuring that leaders are working with the most relevant data possible. This level of timeliness will help directly benefit decision-making efforts for short- and long-term efforts.
If analytics and monitoring tools detect any unusual metrics, they can alert employees right away and will often provide suggestions to mitigate the issue. Industry expert Skip Chilcott told TechRepublic that contextual alerts identify real-time problems, enabling organizations to proactively solve issues before users report them. Automated root cause investigation and identification can also help find trouble spots. This information will be essential for helping employees use their UC system effectively.
Organizations can reap a number of considerable benefits from UC systems, but it will be important to verify that they're making the most of these solutions. Analytics, cost tracking and simplification are major steps to providing a comprehensive communication and collaboration solution that employees will benefit from. For more information on how to make the most of your UC system, contact Teo Technologies today.