What is Unified Communications?
Unified Communications (UC) has many definitions, so don’t get stuck on this. The results from UC are what matter, not the definition. As was well said in a panel at VoiceCon San Francisco 2008, "Let's quit arguing about what UC is; let's spend our time focusing on what UC actually does."
The Definition of UC
UCStrategies.com defined UC from the outset in 2006 as:
“Communications integrated to optimize business processes.”
We continue to see this as a sound foundational definition. This integration of communications can occur across a wide spectrum, from:
Users simply adjusting their habits, to
Manual integration as defined by procedures and training, to
Integration of communications into off-the-shelf tools such as Outlook, Notes, BlackBerry, Salesforce.com, and many others, to
Purpose specific integration into customized applications in specific operating departments or in vertical markets such as healthcare.
Categories of UC
Given this range of possibilities, two categories of the UC definition were defined in 2007-2008:
UC-User Productivity (or "UC-U"): Unified Communications tools that users adopt to improve their experience and/or results.
UC-Business Processes (or "UC-B"): Unified Communications tools that are explicity integrated into defined processes, either procedural or automated.
Read more about the Two Types here.
The definition includes "optimized" since the tools and techniques of UC enable transformative changes in an enterprise’s operations (business processes):
In both cases, the operations are significantly improved by changing how communications tools are used and by eliminating communication-related “hot spots” – those places where the operational activities are blocked, delayed, or complicated by communications issues.
Learn More about Unified Communications on UCStrategies.com
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Text (c) 2012 M. F. Parker. Content (c) as indicated.