The UCStrategies Experts share their expertise in bylined articles, opinion pieces, blogs, and podcasts, to define unified communications, educate you about unified communications technologies, and help you make informed decisions about unified communications solutions.
UCStrategies.com defines unified communications as “Communications integrated to optimize business processes.” The definition of unified communications narrows significantly when you can read and hear about real-world examples that other companies are implementing right now—and apply them to your situation.
This section offers learning tools to help you plan your unified communications implementation.
This section provides a practical, vendor-independent service to any Enterprise that is seeking the benefits of Unified Communications. How do you pull everything together to implement unified communications? Use the tools in this sequence to define unified communications for your business.
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To help you make informed decisions about Unified Communications technologies, UCStrategies provides articles, viewpoints, and a cornucopia of information from the industry's leading analysts and consultants, chosen for expertise in their selected areas to help you better understand the dynamic UC arena.
Most contact center products are aimed at medium or large organizations that have more financial resources and staffing resources needed to invest in these products. While there have been more products introduced in the past few years aimed at contact centers with under 100 or 200 agents, the options for businesses with fewer than 50 agents have been limited. Enter, the cloud. The cloud is becoming the great equalizer for small contact centers, providing a way to get the functions and capabilities needed, but at a relatively low price point.
This week, AudioCodes made a significant move to streamline and simplify acquisition and deployment of Microsoft Lync when they announced AudioCodes One Voice for Microsoft Lync (or simply “One Voice” in this article).
By providing access to not only a set of integrated network elements needed for a Lync deployment, but services such as network assessment, network planning, optimization services, etc., AudioCodes hopes that customers will be better prepared before doing Lync deployments, increasing their chances of success.
Organizations deploying contact center and business communications solutions often have to decide between a “best of breed” or single vendor solution. Interactive Intelligence suggests that companies with Cisco switches may turn to Interactive Intelligence’s Customer Interaction Center (CIC) for more advanced contact center solutions.
Every organization that provides any form of service to consumers must rethink their perspectives of customer service interactions and related technologies and are prime candidates for new, multi-modal interactions with customers. Mobile smartphones and tablets have, in effect, expanded the ability of consumers to have personalized, direct control of their services, access to information, and flexible interactions on-demand with their service providers.
The ever-increasing number of unified communications and contact center options means that organizations need to choose their path wisely lest they get caught in the thorny pricker bush of technology. Regular UCStrategies readers know that I am a strong advocate of documenting and prioritizing business requirements and then evaluating multiple viable options against these prioritized business requirements. Keeping this approach in mind, I would make the following recommendations for organizations evaluating their contact center needs.
Just like Exchange and other enterprise applications, there are server components and desktop clients, but with Lync there is a need for middle parts. Critical parts that complete the Lync puzzle. Microsoft itself is agnostic about how these parts get addressed, and several options exist. But, few vendors have taken as comprehensive approach as AudioCodes.
The bottom line for “unified communications” (UC) is to support individual end user needs to communicate flexibly and efficiently, using all forms of contact with both people and with automated business process applications. This need is particularly pressing for traditional
Fans of the National Football League are very familiar with the concept of the "game plan adjustment" in the locker room at half-time. Network Equipment Technologies (NET), the vendor of innovative security and interoperability devices for unified communications (UC) has just undergone a half-time adjustment. Last week they announced the retirement of their CEO, Nick Keating, and a workforce reduction. Having had a strong relationship with NET for a number of years, I spoke to Matt Krueger, VP of Marketing and Business Development, and Kevin Isacks, Chief Development Officer, to catch up on what had happened and where NET was headed.
It’s been interesting to watch the term “cloud” evolve from the usual “bubble” on a whiteboard representing the public switched telephone network (PSTN) to the current all-encompassing meaning of a resource-optimized deployment of any application across locations in the network. Actually, “cloud” is just a buzz-word for what is really known as Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and Communication-as-a-Service (CaaS).
With the complexities of call routing and skills management, the contact center sits at the convergence of telecommunications, marketing, and the specialized skills required to build those customer-winning relationships.
According to the 2011 Customer Experience Impact (CEI) Report by Harris Interactive, by improving the customer experience – even slightly – companies can see significant increases in revenue. This begs the question, if such revenue is so highly influenced by mere percentage point shifts in customer satisfaction scores, shouldn’t companies be doing every little thing they can to increase their chances of positively influencing that score?
Technology evaluations are inherently an internal process and evaluation for fit and ROI. However, the evaluation – or conversation – can benefit others. Interactive Intelligence is taking the initiative to make the conversation more meaningful. It’s a a bold idea, and so much more meaningful than a logo’d trinket.
Interactive Intelligence has been running a very interesting program that brings the worlds of technology and charity closer together in a unique way
Unified Messaging/Unified Communications vendor AVST has introduced mobile clients for the Apple iOS and Android smartphone platforms called AVST Mobile along with the new CallXpress Release 8.2.
The UX1000 solves a range of problems being presented to the IT Architect when faced with building a branch office network for the UC era.
Your company meets the criteria for adding social media to your customer service operations. So how do you do it? What steps do you need to take to successfully implement a customer-winning social media customer service entry?
As social media gets all of the attention these days, it’s important to understand why customers are turning to social media for customer service and support. If you’re not servicing customers properly through the channels they are more likely to use today, adding social media won’t be enough.
Now is the time to determine if the use of social media as a contact center channel is hype or the right strategy for your company.
The NET UX1000 continues NET’s commitment to delivering effective networking and connectivity solutions for enterprises of all sizes, and especially for small and midsized business and branches. The UX1000 combination of packaging and functionality should be an appealing choice for business locations with as few as 10 to as many as 400 employees.
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Communications Integrated to Optimize Business Processes.
UC integrates real-time and non-real time communications with business processes and requirements.
Uses presence capabilities for coordination, and presents a consistent unified user interface and experience across multiple devices and media types.
Learn more at What is Unified Communications all about?