The need for collaboration in business and enterprise settings has always been a priority. However, the advancement of communication technologies now allows for an unprecedented level of quality interactions between business collaborators.
Unified communications makes accessibility reliable and fast, while increasing the range of communications and collaboration options available to both workers and customers.
Enterprise Collaboration – 8 Ways Unified Communications Helps
1. Working together
It was not very long ago that working together on a project required meeting in person at least occasionally to put all the pieces together. Talking on the phone to discuss options was all well and good, but when you wanted to display your work or demonstrate your thought process in-person meetings were essential.
While there are still instances where this is true, unified communications makes this the exception instead of the rule. Video conferencing and web-based collaboration tools make it possible to work together in real-time on virtually anything, especially if it is information based. This means you can get all the work done without ever needing to physically meet.
2. Travel time
One of the major cost-savings that comes from robust unified communications is travel. Employees do not need to travel across the country—or even across town—to work together. They can complete entire projects without spending time traveling to and from work locations. Depending on the industry and the amount of travel traditionally involved, the money saved can be substantial.
3. Long-distance charges
While the long-distance call has been on its way out for a while, there are still some situations where you can expect to pay a premium to talk on the phone. International long-distance is one of these. Yet with a modern business phone system utilizing VoIP, your company does not need to pay a penny on those long-distance calls. Whether you are contacting the office in New Jersey or Singapore, the cost is the same.
4. Improved teamwork
With unified communications your team is more connected than ever. The combination of chat, email, text, video conferencing and mobile integration means that all members of a team are connected at all times. They can check in on one another, communicate instantly in a variety of formats and collaborate across a range of applications. So even if the team is not physically in the same location, they still feel like they are together.
5. Major software compatibility
When it comes to true collaboration, it is not enough to simply be able to communicate. You need to be able to work together in your chosen programs and applications. Being able to chat or video conference can only get you so far if you cannot open each others files. Unified communications addresses this issue through major software compatibility.
A quality system will integrate seamlessly with important work tools like Microsoft Office and iCalendar, so those trying to work together do not have any extra hurdles to overcome.
6. Communication in real-time
Data is often most useful when it first becomes known. If your company is going to be late delivering an order to an important customer, that customer wants to know as soon as possible. With unified communications, relaying information—both good and bad—becomes easy.
Any employee with access to the system can inform all necessary parties of delays or other issues in an instant. This allows management, customers and co-workers to know when something has gone wrong and to act on that information immediately. Your company is more agile and more competitive as a result.
7. Increased efficiency
The ability to better communicate makes an enterprise more efficient in a number of ways. Besides the previously mentioned reductions in travel time and long-distance charges, there is also a decrease in the problems that result from lost information. In a high-paced work environment important information can easily fall through the cracks. But with unified communications, the likelihood of this happening can be substantially reduced.
You have the ability to require redundancy when it comes to important information. An email, voicemail and chat can all happen simultaneously—making certain that the necessary information is available and that the person that needs this information knows it is available. You can find a communication channel to reach someone and you can make sure that message arrives in multiple ways.
8. Enterprise mobility
There is no way to avoid the rise of the bring-your-own-device workplace. BYOD is something that every enterprise is learning to handle in its own way. However your company chooses to integrate the broad range of personal devices that employees use—including smartphones, tablets and laptops—your unified communications system will be able to accommodate that choice.
This is one of the most powerful aspects of unified communications. Employees can tap into to system using their own device, meaning they are always available when you need them. They can work with colleagues and address emergencies all from their personal devices. This allows you to get the best out of those that work for you.
This article was originally published by TTI Houston
Published: June 20, 2014