In March 2020, the World Health Organization declared Covid-19 a pandemic and overnight the whole of the UK made the abrupt shift to working from home as businesses and organisations quickly executed Business Continuity Plans (or in some cases had to evolve on the fly).
With a restriction on travel and the near blanket closure of shared office spaces, we have all had to adapt, and work became no-longer a PLACE but a case of WHEN and WHERE.
More than twelve months later and there is still no sign of a full return to normality. Even with the vaccine roll-out in its advanced stages we already know that our working habits will never be the same. The sudden shift to distributed work has provided a once-in-a-generation opportunity to reimagine everything about how we do our jobs and how we run our companies.
Business communication tools have evolved as we embrace video as our primary form of communication over the once dominant telephone system. Healthcare, education, finance, and businesses large and small are growing and improving with the help of video communications. This year alone, hundreds of thousands of small business owners – yoga and piano instructors, therapists, accountants, and others – maintained and even grew businesses using video to connect with customers.
The new gold standard for business communication tools are provided by those vendors offering Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). These are global cloud providers whose applications bring together voice, video, instant messaging, and collaboration tools into one single user interface. This is offered as a monthly service priced on a per person per month basis and the charge is all inclusive i.e. licence to use, ongoing support, upgrades and call costs (local, national and mobile).
What are the key factors that make a UCaaS solution so beneficial to a business or organisation of any size?
The end user application (or User Interface) is available for laptops, mobile phones, and tablets in either the android or apple world. There may be even a browser version of the application. This enables the user to choose how and when they work.
The UCaaS application integrates into 3rd Party applications which helps improve the efficiency of the user whilst making certain tasks easier. As an example, an out-of-the-box integration into Google G-Suite and Office 365 enable the dialling a contact from a web site or MS Office document as easy as clicking on a link and selecting ‘dial number’.
Key advantages of a globally delivered solution is the scale of the infrastructure involved in delivering the service. With huge organisations on the same platform the vendor must ensure that their solution is both secure and reliable, generally with 99.999% availability.
With a UCaaS solution all support and upgrades are included within the offering, so the customer is always on the latest and greatest version of the application.
UCaaS solutions are offered at a fixed price per user per month. This covers everything including support and call costs, so there are no surprises in terms of future bills, making budgeting easy.
With a competitive market place there has been no better time than now to be a potential UCaaS customer!
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