The benefits of hosted unified communications (cloud-based UC) simply begin with shifting costs from a capital expense – CAPEX – to a predictable monthly operating expense – OPEX. There are a number of additional factors to examine as you consider how to best invest, install and deploy a modern unified communications solution – telephony, mobility, messaging, presence, conferencing and collaboration services. Productively integrating these applications with your existing operations requires due diligence and research. Here are 7 reasons favoring a hosted solution.
Most IT organizations are stretched thin, struggling to balance day-to-day operations with strategic projects. One advantage of a hosted communications solution is the speed of deployment. Businesses have the flexibility to rollout cloud-based UC without the IT time and resource commitments found with a traditional implementation.
Once deployed, maintenance and support times are reduced since those tasks, together with updates, are performed by the solution provider. Hosted UC offers quick updating via the cloud, allowing a business to deploy new applications to all users or single departments at their own schedule.
A hosted UC solution in the cloud prevents technology obsolescence, reducing the risk and costs of a large scale technology refresh. Your UC provider shoulders the responsibilities of maintenance and technology upgrades. New features and applications can be added as they come into the market and delivered to your business from the cloud.
Multiple levels of redundancy are built into hosted solutions. High availability and top tier servers provide a degree of reliability, typically backed by service level agreements (SLA), difficult and expensive to attain with on-premises solutions. 24/7 system and security monitoring, data mirroring and automated backups, the latest in encryption and security protocols (software and physical) are typically included as part of the provider’s standard offering.
Mirrored servers in multiple regions (geo-redundancy) means your communications infrastructure and data are restored with internet access – via desk phone, laptop, tablet, even your smartphone. A hosted UC solution is an easy-to-add feature for any business’ Disaster Recovery Plan. Quickly restored communications are a vital first step for your recovery operations, no matter how small or large your business.
Faced with a BYOD explosion in the workplace? Not a problem with a hosted solution. Home workers, remote workers, contractors scattered across the globe – cloud communications can provide all business features to registered devices from any location with internet access. Easily move from company WiFi, to cellular networks and back, keeping on-the-go and location agnostic users connected. Desktop clients transform any PC into a virtual desktop phone with complete unified communications features and applications.
Collaboration means anywhere, anytime access on any device. Voice and video conferencing, real-time document sharing, presence features to keep you in touch with your team – these are all collaboration tools to enhance productivity regardless of whether your team is scattered throughout a building or across the country. Customized for customer services, these applications provide powerful tools to improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Flexibility & Customization
Start with a base package of unified communications features and applications. Then add the services and custom features required for your business as needed. Easily implement new applications as they become available. Eliminate the guesswork of how many seats or users your business will need and avoid paying for unused capacity. Hosted solutions allow you to expand or contract the number of users to meet your business’ growth or seasonal demands.
These seven reasons, in addition to the predictable budgetary benefits, are why more businesses, organizations and enterprises are looking to the cloud and a hosted solution for their next step in unified communications and collaboration technologies. With due diligence, you’re sure to find more reasons specific to your needs.
Learn more about hosted unified communications by downloading our free white papers – Reduce UC Costs and Increase Business Performance and Achieving High Availability in UC – at the UNIVERGE BLUE Resources webpage.