Behind each successful Unified Communications (UC) deployment is a sound UC strategy. If you want to pave the way for a seamless transition into the unified environment, then you have to carefully map out an effective UC strategy.
The fact is, unified communications is about more than giving your workers the ability to access several communication tools from a single interface on various devices. It’s about embedding these communication capabilities into your existing business processes and business applications.
By adopting this dual outlook, you can ensure your employees can reach a high level of productivity – from any location and at any time. Learn more about developing an effective UC strategy here.
1. Start with the User and Work Backward
What many people don’t realize is that their end user is the best indicator of what collaboration and communication tools will be most beneficial. Look at what they are currently using. Your workers may be using certain apps on their own devices, and these may be ideal for communicating with your business partners, suppliers, and customers.
By looking at what your workers are doing and then implementing a solution that they already use, you can develop a communications strategy that will be easy to adopt and implement. Starting from scratch with a new platform or program usually isn’t a very effective plan.
2. Provide Time to Discover and Learn about New Technology
Be sure there’s plenty of time for you to get to know your end users’ needs, and how UC can benefit these individuals. You also need to determine what platform matches these requirements and how the UC platform operates.
The fact is, this learning process can take several weeks, and that’s fine. Understanding the various UC technologies, the technical requirements and the deployment option available can help you make smarter decisions regarding the UC environment you build. In the long run, this will benefit your business.
3. Prepare Your Infrastructure
By adding features such as document sharing, conferencing, messaging and rich media collaboration tools, there’s no question that your network is going to be hit with an extra load. Data connections, routers and servers all have to have the ability to handle this increased traffic, especially if you plan to add more users to your system.
You also need to assess Wi-Fi, LAN/WAN, and security infrastructure requirements. After all, you want to get the best possible performance from your UC applications.
4. Interoperability from Multiple Vendors
If you are trying to build a UC ecosystem that utilizes technologies from several vendors, then you need to make sure all components are able to work together, without issue. This includes your endpoint devices, IP private branch exchanges, and UC servers.
While UC software and hardware interoperability have improved recently, it’s a good idea to work with a systems integration specialist to ensure all components have meshed well together.
5. User Training and Phased Deployment
Having a phased rollout is beneficial as you can learn from the hiccups and mistakes that occur during the initial deployment. Even if your workers are familiar with UC applications, training is also necessary to ensure everyone knows the full capabilities of the UC tools you are putting in place.
When you are creating a UC strategy, be sure to keep the aforementioned tips in mind. This will help ensure you achieve the desired results and that your workers are able to use the UC tools without issue.
If you need help building your unified communications strategy, or have questions about the solution that’s right for you, reach out to the staff at Monster VoIP for information and help.