UNIFIED COMMUNICATIONS AND COLLABORATION
The benefit is to both the brand and the consumer , elevating everyone ’ s experience , resolving issues more effectively the first time , and improving employee engagement .
I UNDERSTAND THAT UCC APPLICATIONS ARE MOV- ING TO THE CLOUD ( UCAAS ). WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS AND ALSO THE CHALLENGES OF UCC CLOUD VERSUS ON-PREMISE DEPLOYMENT ?
DH : UCaaS adoption has significantly outpaced premise-based services and will continue to do so moving forward . The benefits of moving from legacy premise-based solutions to cloud-based unified communications are significant .
First , the ability to enable remote workers . With UCaaS , all of your communications services are located and supported in the cloud , and accessible from anywhere , on any device . And with a single unified platform , users are able to move from chat , to voice , and to video seamlessly and effortlessly – something not easily supported by traditional premise-based solutions .
Second , there are no maintenance and hardware costs . With a cloud-based solution , the setup , implementation , and ongoing maintenance is now completely handled and supported by the UCaaS provider . And outside of any required physical handsets and conferencing equipment , there is virtually no onsite hardware to support .
Next is faster innovation . With UCaaS , your communications platform is always the latest and greatest , with ongoing updates and upgrades handled seamlessly in the cloud . New features and functionality can be deployed instantly across your organization with no IT planning required .
Additionally , there is significant cost reduction . For UCaaS , one of the biggest savings is right in the name – Unified Communications as a Service . By migrating to the cloud , organizations move their communications costs from a CapEx model to an OpEx model , which provides more predictable billing , and as noted above , no-cost maintenance and upgrades .
Lastly is improved security . Cloud providers have strict compliance and regulatory standards and are required to perform audits on a regular basis .
Customer data , such as call logs and usage reports , are securely stored using the highest level of encryption with access control and appropriate permissions for users who access the data . Additionally , implementing end-to-end encryption of real-time traffic ensures your conversations are private and secure .
Interestingly enough , one of the top concerns for organizations debating a move to the cloud , is listed as a benefit above - security .
Whether a perceived or real threat , some organizations ’ concerns regarding the security of their communications and the associated data can be concerning .
For a highly regulated organization , such as government , financial , and healthcare , the concerns over data storage in the cloud , and the possibility of communications being compromised can be a challenge to overcome .
There ’ s also a question around quality and reliability . For some , the move to the cloud brings questions around maintaining consistent service , especially with workers being distributed , and more users WFH .
From proper bandwidth to support quality communication , to the reliability of the network – especially with the increased reliance on Wi-Fi as primary connectivity – the challenges of ensuring that a mission-critical service like UCaaS ( and CCaaS ) aren ’ t negatively impacted can also be a concern .
NM : There is no question that cloud-based applications are the future . While the transition to the cloud can be costly , businesses will make up for it in the long run with increased flexibility and scalability .
On-premise deployment doesn ’ t offer the same flexibility as the cloud in terms of managing a remote or hybrid workforce . In addition , cloud solutions can often be supported from anywhere as opposed to servicing only on-site , on-premise applications .
Cloud also offers the ability to get new features and security updates quicker , reducing cybersecurity risks and enhancing operational flow . These updates also often come with fewer service disruptions in downtime , reducing lost revenue .
CM : Employing a successful hybrid work strategy has been one of the biggest challenges impacting leaders now that some employees have returned to the office and others remain remote .
To ensure successful collaboration , no matter where employees are physically located while not losing culture , communication must be more deliberate and requires proper implementation of technology .
UC provides a single platform for key enabling technologies like calling , messaging , video conferencing and faxing . UCaaS enables enterprises to integrate all of these tools within a single platform via the cloud and encourages a renewed sense of collaboration among employees .
UCaaS is an important tool for businesses employing a hybrid approach as it allows for quick scalability as teams grow or change . Not only does it enable businesses to easily connect both onsite and remote employees , but it also allows for seamless connections with partners and customers .
With a UCaaS solution in place , employees can easily access and share information no matter where they are or how they ’ re connected .
JANUARY 2023 39