Unified Communications and Collaboration means empowerment to a business. It allows members of a company to communicate via media whether in-house or working remotely. Recently, market research group Ovum did a survey sponsored by Dimension Data that involved 1,250 businesses in different industries around the world. The focus was the future of UC&C – Dimension Data wanted to get a handle on how this emerging technology matters in the business world.
One thing the study made clear was Unified Communications and Collaboration is an ongoing process. Seventy-eight percent of IT department heads state they have a strategy in place for the development and enhancement of UC&C – complete with dedicated budgets.
Survey analyst Mike Sapien theorizes the catalyst behind this strategic approach is the growth of mobility.
Goals of UC&C
The goals each enterprise attaches to this technology vary, but only 7 percent of those surveyed claimed the end user was influential in the development process. Sapien believes over time companies will phase out the bring-your-own-device mindset for one universal communication tool. The driving forces behind UC&C strategies include:
- Business enhancement
- Flexible working environments
- Fine tuned productivity
- Business agility
UC&C in the Cloud
The future of UC&C may be in cloud technology – that is a critical concept that businesses need to realize. Twenty percent of surveyed companies plan to consider deployment of a cloud UCC system within two years. Many, around 36 percent, currently utilize a cloud provider for this purpose.
A manage service isn’t the only option available to companies. The future may include a mixed model. The cloud service provider can cover remote locations while an in-house system handles the brick and mortar communication for larger companies.
The survey points out businesses are seeing the benefits of outsourcing communication. The capital expenditure for purchasing and maintaining an on-board UC system is staggering – way above what most small businesses can handle. Cloud service is a practical option for companies looking to keep up with the big boys. The recent spurt in cloud computing has opened many eyes regarding the process. People see it as a service that is both cost-effective and safe.
This study proves that enterprises, large and small, are building a roadmap to develop their UC&C capabilities. It takes time to create an effective strategy, but since the future looks bright for this innovative technology, it is time well spent.