The last 20 years have seen a spike in new communication technologies and devices like never before.
Instant messaging, phone systems, SMS, email, and social media have stormed our lives and our work. No wonder it has been getting overwhelming and chaotic to manage business communication and workplace collaboration.
Thus, a new field has emerged to integrate different communication technologies and manage them from a single place: Unified Communications (UC).
In addition, it has given rise to a sought-after business solution, Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). So let’s take a close look at both and understand how Unified Communications can help your brand.
What are Unified Communications?
As discussed above, Unified Communications (UC) refers to tying in all the different technologies used by an organization together and making them manageable from a single platform for seamless communication and collaboration.
This platform provided as a cloud-based software is known as UCaaS (Unified Communications as a Service).
It doesn’t need to be downloaded and installed on your device. Instead, it can be operated from multiple devices connected to the web, allowing you to reach someone on the right device at the right time.
The most prominent features offered by unified communication solutions include:
All-In-One Inbox: You can get your fax, voice messages, emails, SMS and everything else sent to a single inbox, which can be accessed on the cloud.
Phone Integration: You get features like one-click dialing, audio-to-text conversion, speech recognition, one number for all incoming calls, analytics, and more.
3rd-Party App Integrations: You can connect a UC solution with your CRM, calendar, file sharing platform, video conferencing software, and more to get a seamless experience.
The bottom line is, Unified communications make the content and messages shared inside and outside an organization more streamlined.
In other words, instead of having a directionless concoction of various technologies, unified communications providefor you with an organized, all-in-one solution. This core benefit has paved the way for growing interest in UC and UCaaS.
Unified Communications Trends
Though strides in digital transformation, communication, and marketing have been pushing the need for Unified Communications in the last few years, the Covid-19 pandemic has escalated the urgency.
Several research studies have corroborated the same:
- UCaaS provider Voxbone reported twice the number of online conference minutes on its network in the Asia Pacific region since the virus spread.
- A 2018 report by Gartner states that 90% of IT executives will favor UCaaS solutions over on-premise UC infrastructure by 2021.
- Statistics from ResearchAndMarkets reveal that the worldwide UC market size will reach $143.49 billion by 2024.
- According to MarketsAndMarkets, the global UCaaS market size is estimated to touch $24.8 billion by 2024.
As we discussed, this surging demand for Unified Communications solutions overlaps with the timing of the Covid pandemic and the rise of several adjacent technologies and trends. These also include artificial intelligence and remote work.
Research by Expert Market shows that 74% of office-based organizations have all of their staff working remotely at present, as compared to 7% before Covid-19.
In addition, 82% of companies expect more of their staff to ask for remote working options after they return to the workplace, while 31% don’t see themselves returning to the office at all.
As per another estimate, 55% of organizations expect to offer additional remote working options, even after the Covid-19 pandemic subsides.
With the rise of digital technologies and remote work, tracking communication with customers and managing internal projects and information has gotten complicated.
The result of this is a paradigm shift in terms of how companies communicate, both internally and with customers. It has helped them understand and adopt Unified Communications and the associated benefits, as outlined below.
How Unified Communications Help Businesses
As you can imagine, the ability to communicate with coworkers and customers through various devices and channels, yet keeping everything organized in one place, offers several benefits to your organization.
Reduction in Technology Expenditure
Without a unified communications solution, you’ll need multiple technologies to deal with communication on different devices and channels. Furthermore, you’ll likely need additional software to make your multiple technologies exchange data with each other.
All this extra implementation is surely going to put a strain on your financial resources. Having a good UCaaS solution, on the other hand, can reduce your spending on operations and human resources.
By allowing your staff to work better from anywhere, you also save on the cost of office space.
Improved Team Collaboration
UC breaks down silos and removes barriers to sharing of information, allowing teams to communicate more effectively.
Staff members can easily reach each other regardless of where they are working from, improving flexibility and productivity.
Better Customer Engagement
Customers today are more demanding than ever while having low patience and attention spans. UC allows businesses to reach customers through the devices and channels they are active on and prefer to communicate with.
This allows brands not only more likely to reach customers with promotions and case resolutions but also to reach and help them faster.
Unified Communications is the Future
The last few years have demonstrated, without a doubt, that remote work and digital technologies are here to stay.
With office spaces shrinking and investment in digital communication channels on the rise, the demand for Unified Communications is not slowing down anytime soon.
Considering the benefits associated with Unified Communications, it’s safe to say that UCaaS is a worthy investment for any brand.
The sooner you can capitalize on this trend, the better for your company’s productivity, communication, and overall health.
Are you interested in implementing a unified communication system in your business? Let’s talk!
We’d love to tell you more about our AI-powered omnichannel platform that lets you provide your customers with seamless unified communication across all channels. And the best part is, it’s super easy to manage, having all customer interactions managed in one smart inbox.