As technology achieves a more prominent position in the enterprise and SMB markets, the ability to streamline and integrate a variety of tools into one central solution will be increasingly important for the future of business communication. This is creating an opportunity for service providers to develop profitable business models based on delivering unified communications as a part of their hosted PBX solution.
When thoroughly realized, UC will be able to offer businesses numerous benefits, and the promise of such advantages are already creating a demand for service providers who can deliver these solutions. According to a recent study conducted by Transparency Market Research, the market for unified communications is expected to increase over the next three years, reaching a total value of nearly$62 billion by 2018. This market will continue to grow as more businesses experience the advantages of UC. Keep reading to find out the top four benefits businesses are already seeing:
One of the most beneficial aspects of a UC platform is the ability to save time. The time it takes to call and leave a voicemail, write an email and send and instant message just to get in touch with someone is extremely inefficient. This can be eliminated simply by using presence to successfully initiate a conversation on the first attempt.
In the NetSapiens platform, users are able to use a contacts pop-up in their web portal to determine if the person who they are trying to reach is available. A colored presence indicator is shown next to each user’s name along with a custom status message. With presence, an employee who would like to contact their co-worker can look at their presence indicator and see that the person they would like to call is already on the phone. Instead of wasting time by calling their coworker and leaving a message, the employee can wait until their co-worker is off of the phone and their presence indicator automatically turns green again. Having this information enables staff members to stay updated on the availability of their colleagues and increases productivity. No longer will employees have to call three phone numbers, send an email and invite someone to a Web conference before being able to get ahold of them.
Flexibility and efficiency
Cloud-based UC, or unified communication-as-a-service, enable businesses and their employees to achieve a new level of flexibility that is not possible using legacy PBX systems. Workers can use a single phone number to handle all of their communication needs. With unified communications, users have the flexibility to maintain a single identity from any device and any location.
Another benefit of this type of UC solution is the ability to start communicating via one channel and seamlessly continue the conversation using a different device. If a call is initiated on a desk phone but the employee needs to leave the office, the conversation can be continued on their mobile phone without having to hang up and call back. A recent survey conducted by market research firm Chadwick Martin Bailey revealed that half of organizations utilizing unified communications saved as much as 20 minutes per employee due to more efficient message management.
Part of the mass appeal of unified communications is how it meets the demands of both small businesses and major corporations while also recognizing that those needs will be different. Traditional PBX systems require a significant amount of capital investment to implement and maintain which limited this service to only the larger enterprises. UC in the cloud can be used as an equalizer for small businesses to gain features and functionality that were previously unaffordable or unrealistic for their size. Once the small business gains access to UC, it is easy to them to grow into a larger solution at their own pace. Service providers who offer unified communications in the cloud using the NetSapiens platform have access to all of the UC features under a single Universal Session License. This allows them to customize their offerings to the needs of a wide variety of end users ranging from small local businesses to enterprises with multiple locations.
Perhaps the most popular part of unified communications is the advanced feature set they offer that can help companies save time and money. Everyone is looking for ways to increase productivity, and while technology is supposed to help with that, it often ends up getting in the way when working with several disparate solutions. UC provides many features under one roof and simplified processes that reduce confusion and improve efficiency.The NetSapiens unified communications feature set is constantly growing, especially with the use of WebRTC technology integrated directly into the current user interface.
Now is the time for service providers to take advantage of the growing demand for unified communications. The expectations that business and enterprises have for service providers are not only changing, they are increasing with demands for new features. As the benefits of UC continue to grow, the opportunities for service providers to build profitable businesses will grow as well.