The Unified Communications (UC) market is undergoing explosive adoption, with some analysts predicting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.8 percent through 2024. Now more than ever, businesses are looking to UC to improve productivity, enhance collaboration and reduce monthly telecommunications expenses.
In case you are new to the technology, UC is a strategy that involves bringing together disparate communications and networking services into a centralized, user-friendly platform that can be accessed from any location.
Just because a lot of businesses are adopting UC, though, doesn’t mean all are satisfied with the services they are receiving. Overall satisfaction with UC remains mixed across the board as businesses are discovering that not all UC solutions offer the same level of quality, reliability, and support.
How To Choose A True Global Communications Company
Enterprises that are considering implementing UC are strongly advised to look beyond a platform’s basic feature set and consider its structural elements. There are many companies that offer robust UC platforms but lack the ability to ensure strong performance across multiple geographical locations. To identify a global communications company that delivers on all of these elements, consider the characteristics below.
A Robust Global Network
One of the biggest reasons why companies invest in UC is to utilize IP communication. Technologies like VoIP and video conferencing, however, are not guaranteed to perform at a high level. Issues like latency and jitter can lead to garbled communications. For this reason, it’s important to partner with a UC provider offering robust global network services. By partnering with a company that has a strong global reach, it’s possible to reduce long-haul data transmissions, resulting in better sounding calls with fewer dropped packets. Strong connectivity is an essential part of UC.
A true global UC provider will provide more than just a strong network. It will also give network administrators the ability to intelligently route and control traffic using software defined wide area networking (SD-WAN). Now a top enterprise communications demand, SD-WAN can help ensure that all distributed UC services have the critical resources they need to function properly.
Businesses will have varying levels of complexity with their networking needs. It’s important to work with an end-to-end communications enabler that will listen to those needs and offer a deployment model that makes the most sense. Some businesses will require a hosted model, while others will prefer a hybrid solution or some other arrangement with additional products.
A data breach can have disastrous consequences for an enterprise, and so it’s vital to invest in a UC solution that will help protect information while it’s in transit. Data encryption should be a deal breaker in a UC platform, as well as firewall protection, packet filtering, and range checking, customizable security reporting, and secure fiber. A true global UC provider will offer all of these essential services and more, in addition to compliance with industry-specific standards such as HIPAA and PCI.
A Modern Contact Center
While this feature may seem like an outlier, the contact center is actually an integral component to many Unified Communications solutions. As UC enables businesses to consolidate every aspect of their communications, an updated and modernized contact center helps companies to stay in sync with their customer-base or other callers. Advanced contact center solutions are specialized to handle high volumes of calls, track caller interactions with your brand, and keep even more detailed records so that your business can keep up with real-time events. A top-tier global communications company will provide a contact center solution which integrates seamlessly with their UC platform or stands alone for businesses which need only contact center services.
Purchasing a fixed number of phone lines can be expensive not to mention limiting. Avoid this by working with a UC provider offering virtual phone lines over a broadband internet connection that can be used across any location. Virtual phone lines can be bought for less money in bulk, enabling flexibility and cost savings.
The gold standard of excellence in UC is an uptime rating of 99.999 percent. A UC provider should take advanced measures to ensure uptime and disaster recovery while providing automatic call routing and backup services for ongoing data transmissions and communications. Seamless failover mechanisms should be in place to ensure continuity no matter what happens.