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Unify Square Discusses the Benefits and Challenges of Lync/Skype for Business Migration

December 29, 2014

The unified communications (UC) world has undergone many changes this year, and one of the most important was Microsoft’s decision last month to transition its Lync platform to Skype for Business. The progression is a logical one since the company’s acquisition of Skype, but still has a number of ramifications for customers using or transitioning to Lync/Skype. One of the many benefits of this UC platform, however, is the associated service providers that specialize in the offering and tailor their services accordingly. Unify Square is one of those companies, and has a longtime track record and experience working with Lync.

The company has deployed the UC solution in more than 150 enterprises and recently rolled out its UC RightTrack service offering, tailored around Lync/Skype for Business migrations. We got a chance to speak to Sonu Aggarwal, founder and CEO of Unify Square, about the offering and Unify Square’s views of the transforming UC market.

According to Aggarwal, UC RightTrack is the framework for an approximately 30-day migration to Skype for Business, and consists of strategy and planning; user adoption; implementation and deployment; and operations. It may be used for brand new Skype for Business deployments or for companies who are in the process of migrating to Lync/Skype. Aggarwal said that Microsoft’s transition to Skype for Business was a logical one that began a few years back, when the company first purchased Skype.

“The UC transformational journey within the enterprise is just the beginning,” said Aggarwal. “Once enterprises can tightly collaborate with their clients, consumers, supply chains, etc., then they will really change the way business will be conducted.”

He added that the transition to Skype for Business also makes financial sense, particularly for those organizations who have already deployed Lync conferencing solutions. “Anyone who has Lync conferencing and enterprise voice deployed and operational will find themselves in a much better position to adopt Skype for Business when it becomes available. Acceleration of the Lync EV initiative means getting to that monetary ROI that much quicker. To achieve that ROI means to meet your target usage levels and to reach a healthy run state. This is true for Lync today and will be for Skype for Business ‘tomorrow.’ “

Another major factor in UC implementation that Unify Square helps its customers with is being mindful of the realities of implementation. Aggarwal said businesses need to be aware of how their business goals will affect implementation and develop a deployment plan that meshes with their financial goals and deadlines. They also need to ensure they drive end-user adoption as well as define a strong operations approach to ensure a healthy run state.

Finally, Aggarwal stressed that end user adoption is perhaps the most important factor of a successful Lync/Skype for Business implementation. “The earlier the employee base gets comfortable with conferencing and voice in Lync, the earlier the enterprise as a whole is ready to differentiate in the marketplace by better connecting employees with its customer-consumers,” he said. “Perceived experience is what’s key.”

That user experience comes down to a few metrics and Unify Square focuses on helping customers achieve these benchmarks. They include service availability, voice quality and end user satisfaction. Ultimately, clients that meet these metrics have overall healthy service levels and better end user adoption in the long run

For more on all the latest technology and trends happenings, be sure to register to attend ITEXPO, the business technology event that brings together service providers, enterprises, government agencies, resellers, vendors and developers to demo, discuss and network all the latest innovations changing the marketplace. ITEXPO is being held January 27-30, 2015, at the Miami Beach Convention Center in Miami, Florida.   Stay in touch with everything happening at the event -- follow us on Twitter

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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