Unified Communications Solutions with Support for Emerging Platforms
Unified communications is now an important investment for enterprises that are trying to enhance productivity and responsiveness while cutting down their IT costs. As the voice, video and data communications begin to converge around a shared IP-based infrastructure, users can conveniently make a call, send a message or be a part of some audio or video conference. This brings cost and efficiency benefits to businesses of all sizes, industries and geographical areas.
While the advantages are obvious, the question is how to select an enterprise-level unified communications solution? As this is a rapidly evolving concept, it is not easy to predict future needs. A narrow decision based on only one application can restrict your choices later when you have a need to also support smartphones, tablets, video and social networking or connect with users across various devices and systems. Similarly, deploying unified communications without adequately considering the implications on IT infrastructure can become problematic.
The strategy is therefore to build in adequate flexibility to accommodate new developments as business needs evolve while also extending the worth of current IT investments, establishing value and promoting end-user adoption. One of the ways to ensure this is to provide support for emerging consumer platforms.
Studies have shown that there is a trend of bring-your-own devices (BYOD) in different organizations. With this, IT teams of businesses need to find a new balance between flexibility and control. The unified communications solution here must be a part of the decision, given its increasing emphasis on mobile communication from a variety of endpoints. Chief points to consider are:
Enterprise-level regulation: Your unified communications solution must have a detailed policy control set-up, to offer flexible but secure access to corporate systems from the consumer-style devices. The network is the most effective place to locate a security framework as also highly granular access control that can find, identify, and provide or deny access to any resource or service in real time.
Consumer preferences: An ideal unified communications should support a variety of smartphones and tablets on different operating systems like Android and iOS. Such support allows a business to offer good combinations of personal user device choice along with an optimal collaboration experience. This increases the chances of adoption and compliance along with productivity for the business.
Future-ready device support: Technology is changing by the minute. It is not meant to stay still. Therefore, your unified communications need to have the ability to embrace new devices, platforms and operating systems as soon as they evolve. Ideal collaboration architecture has to be specifically devised with client service framework – an application abstraction layer that can make way for rich programmatic access to principal unified communications solutions from any device or operating system. This can provide reassurance of support for the next consumer device to be used in future.
The areas of applications with unified communications comprise IVR, call control, voice mail, CTI apps, IM / Presence, web conferencing, cloud / virtualization, contact centers, CEBP, OSS, and fixed mobile convergence.
The next breakthrough levels of business innovation and efficiency will come from a business’s ability to work through new industry and technology trends; to tap into the latent expertise that often lies within the organization; and to engage employees, customers, and business partners more strongly with the brand.
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