Today's technology makes it easy for businesses to operate outside of the traditional ‘office space’ environment.
Thanks to next-generation Unified Communications (UC) solutions, companies can optimise their workforce by integrating real-time communications like telephony, instant messaging, and video conferencing with non real-time services such as email, voicemail, and SMS.
Why should organisations consider implementing UC? Here are 6 key considerations:
1. Employee productivity
The ability for employees to communicate effectively is critical for most businesses. As such, UC tools can be amongst the most important tools business can employ. By bringing together voice, messaging, web and video conferencing, and presence information, UC encourages employee engagement and allows staff to collaborate efficiently.
Waiting for a colleague to reply over email can often take some time, whereas with instant messaging, responses are likely to be more immediate. Using UC, users can move seamlessly from an email conversation to a video call, for a faster decision-making process. Moreover, presence information means employees will know when a colleague is available and on what channels, reducing any communication delays.
2. Flexibility for the workforce
Remote working is on the rise and employees want to be able to work at times and locations that suit them, both when talking to customers and collaborating with colleagues. UC enables this mobility and flexibility, providing users with all the communications channels they need on one secure platform, with a consistent experience across a desktop or mobile device.
Employees can be as productive on-the-go as they would be if they were working from an office desk, with access to all corporate communication features and channels at any time and in any connected location.
3. Cost reduction
UC can consolidate all communication, including telephony, email, voicemail, instant messaging, video conferencing, and any server-based application, into one seamlessly integrated offering. Businesses no longer need to pay for and support individual tools, products, or equipment.
With video conferencing, companies can also avoid spending money on travel to face-to-face meetings with colleagues, clients, or prospects, which, depending on location, can prove to be expensive. UC also allows companies to optimise their use of office space, reducing real estate costs.
4. A better customer experience
Keeping customers happy is no doubt the focus of every business. UC can dramatically improve the customer experience, offering features such as intelligent routing, so customers reach a company expert to answer their query for fast, first-time resolution.
A Forrester Research survey, commissioned by Cisco, suggests that businesses can significantly improve their responsiveness to customers with UC, with 77% citing that they would improve customer satisfaction if they could transfer complex customer product questions to product support personnel in real time.
5. Easy to manage communication
With UC, everything is in one place for the IT department making it easier to manage the communication environment, and freeing valuable IT resources. Companies have total control over their infrastructure and, if you select a pure cloud solution, then you’ll greatly reduce the amount of on-premise hardware that needs to be supported.
The flexibility of a cloud-based UC solution also gives businesses the opportunity to rapidly scale up without making a big capital investment, for example, adding extra customer service agents for an e-retailer during a busy sales period.
6. Collaboration accelerates innovation and growth
Collaboration provides wider access to geographically dispersed groups and brings integration and uniform methodology to business practices. The increased integration can help your company grow faster and provide mutual support networks between organisations and internal departments.
Moreover, this increase of productivity leads to innovation that creates competitive advantage through knowledge, good practice, and information sharing.
There are many more benefits to UC, too many to mention here. To find out more about the benefits of UC and how Node4’s Collaboration solutions can help your business, get in touch.