Unified Communications Featured Article

Why Businesses Don't Choose UC

April 06, 2016

Businesses are rapidly adopting unified communications for the cost savings, employee productivity gains and competitive advantage it brings. Some firms have been slow to adopt UC, however.

The global unified communications market is expected to reach nearly $76 billion by 2020 with an annual growth rate of roughly 16.3 percent, according to Grand View Research. That’s significant growth, and a quick encapsulation of the mercurial pace of UC adoption.

At the same time, some businesses are being left behind. There are several reasons why these businesses are behind the trend, as noted in a recent blog post by cloud communications firm, Fusion.

One reason is that some businesses are too attached to their existing, piecemeal communications platforms and don’t want to give them up. This can become a major cost center, however, because there’s significant value from integrated communications systems that bring together the various communications channels—the sum of UC is greater than its parts.

“Leveraging voice, email, chat and other services from individual providers may have been a good idea back in the day, but with consolidated offerings so widely available, it simply no longer makes sense to juggle it all,” noted the Fusion blog post.

Another aspect keeping many firms from UC is network connectivity issues. Business networks can come under strain when video, voice and messaging are all running at the same time and widely used in an organization, and some smaller firms don’t have appropriate network connectivity to support UC. This hinders UC use.

With cloud-based UC solutions, however, businesses don’t have to shoulder the network burden in most cases. Communications providers handle the network, and all but the skimpiest network connections should suffice.

This brings up a third barrier of adoption: Complexity. UC, for better or worse, is viewed as complex.

That UC is complex is not a hollow concern, especially for smaller firms. UC can be complex, especially federated systems and those that deeply integrate with other business systems. UC need not be complex, however; a range of providers, both cloud-based and on-premise, have simplified UC and made it much easier to deploy. Businesses can have complex deployments—but they need not.

Really there is no good reason why firms should forego UC adoption. A pity that some still do, however.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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