UC Implementation Mistakes to Avoid

Picture this: your employees aren’t being as productive as you know they could be, but you can’t figure out why. It could simply be that they are not getting the data and information they need at the right time. Unified Communications (UC) can have a huge impact on your employees’ collaboration, and as a result, their productivity. However, it’s almost impossible to implement a UC system and expect it to work overnight! Some companies that attempt to make the switch to a UC system suffer from a few common pitfalls that could be avoided.

Read below for some tips for UC implementation:

Pitfall #1: Lack of Employee Training
Since UC systems are designed to be used by you and your employees, your employees are your best asset in getting your UC system in place. Make sure they know what is happening, how it can improve their work experience, and what they can do to help. When in doubt, opt for a slow integration process. While it may be frustrating to you, knowing what exciting new features are going to be available in the future, adding only a few tools at a time gives your employees the time they need to get used to them.

Pitfall #2: Unnecessary Features
Speaking of exciting new features, sometimes tools included in your UC system may bog down your employees with redundant information. The best way to prevent a backslide in productivity is to know your company and its technological needs. Training …

5 Tips for Unified Communications Implementation

The majority of organizations face the challenge of delays caused by lack of adequate communication. Such a scenario often, has adverse impacts on the performance of the team, the efficiency of the company, and the competitiveness of any business. Unified Communications (UC) describes the integration of devices and applications to enhance the efficiency and mode of communication for the purpose of increasing productivity, enhancing team collaboration, and streamline business processes. The lack of UC compromises major operations in an organization.

Does your organization have poor performance, inadequate team collaboration, or does it suffer from reduced productivity due to increased delays and ineffective communication?-having Unified Communications will help you sort all the communications challenges and problems that you experience in your organization. How then do you have your communications unified?

Here are a few tips that you can follow to ensure successful implementation of UC in your organization or business.

Review the existing infrastructure


Before adopting UC, you need to be aware of the specific aspects within your organization that require such advancement based on the needs of your organization. What communication models and channels are already in place-emails? Then, assess approaches to ensure that your email systems, protocols, and practices are refined prior to implementing unified communications.

Have a robust foundation


You need to ensure that you are not building on sand! Having your Unified Communications on an aging network infrastructure will definitely not give you the results that you want. Ensure that your available …

What’s a Project Implementation Plan?

A project manager’s job today very much resembles that of a ship captain in the 1800’s, having to think about every aspect of the boat while getting it safely from point A to point B in a timely manner. There tends to be no down time from the start to finish of a project, with every moment and every hour a consideration about what else could impact the project.

The sailing map for the project captain, however, doesn’t resemble some artistic cartography. Instead, the old-school charts and timelines are replaced by a more sophisticated project implementation plan. This set of documentation collectively details every step, phase, date and tasks of how the given project comes together. As a result, the project manager’s job involves not just creating the plan, but also ensuring compliance with the project.

The project implementation plan often provides the project manager a checklist as well as a set of performance metrics of expected results to aim for by each date or stage. Psychologically, a well-structured plan of progress usually provides better results than going into a project simply guessing how to proceed day-to-day. When used for benchmarking, the implementation plan may provide an early signal that project work might be steering off the rails and heading in the wrong direction. Finally, the plan lays out an approach that all the team members on the project understand and can reference.

A typical implementation plan appears as a large document with lots of …

UC Implementation Solutions: The Basics of SIP Trunking

From a data and storage perspective, internet cloud networking offers enormous benefits, particularly for startups looking for cost-effective UC implementation solutions. However, there’s far more to cloud computing than just storage benefits. Because of the versatility of the internet and the capacity of bandwidth that’s possible with fiber connections, massive amounts of data can transfer without issue. And cloud computing allows tremendous access to these advantages at a low cost. SIP trunking and voice communications are one of the biggest benefits often overlooked by growing companies.
What is SIP trunking?
SIP trunking is a data transfer protocol that allows data to layer on top of itself, which then allows for different types of data to transmit on the same transmission lines and conduits at the same time. In short, it’s the tool that allows the internet, digital data, voice data, and other data to move through the same channel at the same time versus waiting for one to pass before the other can move through.

The SIP part of the name is an acronym for Session Initiation Protocol, a form of Internet data transferring between two points, or peer-to-peer. The data moves between peers including email, texting, SMS chat, interactive gaming, fax data, and even voice communication converted to a digital format. The key factor has a tool that disseminates and filters all the forms of data so they can be created, sent, and interpreted correctly on the receiving end. The SIP standard is the …

Easing UC Implementation Fears

Today’s workforce is demanding enterprise mobility that makes workflows accessible in a familiar format. Businesses today looking to attract top talent need to do so with simplified interfaces that work in connection with mobile devices. Most businesses today need one infrastructure that everyone can use with all their different modalities.

But with the transition to a new Unified Communications (UC) solution, there may be some concern about the impact the transition will have. However, a carefully planned UC implementation process can virtually eliminate those fears.
Unified Communication Benefits
Cloud-based UC systems provide flexibility in communications. Team members are able to receive company calls, set up virtual conferences using basic internet connections, access corporate voicemail and use call forwarding to any device. Wherever team members are located, unified communication solutions makes employees more effective when communicating with other team players, clients and customers, as well as management.

Employees are empowered with an efficient flow of data, documents, files, and customer information, activities, and preferences right on their screens during a conversation. They are equipped to share, discuss in detail, revise, and implement business changes through audio, video conferencing, instant messaging, and even fax relay. On-screen file sharing is instant with UC conversations and off-site communications.

With a cloud-based VoIP system, your staff will know when to contact people (availability and presence), the history of a caller or customer and their preferences, as well as be able to schedule conference calls and video work sessions. These features will greatly reduce commuting time and expense.
Implementing …

What a UC Implementation Means for the IT Department

Your IT department is a valuable resource. They are responsible for ensuring you have the tools and resources that keep your business moving. From system security, software and application updates to new equipment set-up and repairs, they are the lifeblood of connectivity for a business. Because of this, when you are making the wise choice to move over to Unified Communications (UC), the IT department will play another extremely valuable role. But how exactly will the implementation change the way your IT department functions?

Here are a few IT changes you may experience:
Shifted Responsibilities:
There’s a long list of benefits of implementing a UC solution including enhanced user experience, mobile-friendly options, chat features, video conferencing and more. However, the downside is that it does take some time to switch over from a traditional phone system to a UC solution. Depending on the size of your business, this could mean weeks or months of transition time changing over equipment and processes. Additionally, even though your new systems will require less IT dependency on phone lines and additional servers, it will still require updates, monitoring, and scaling as business needs change.
Enhanced Security Policies:
A new UC implementation means you are likely implementing a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) process as well. BYOD comes with a list of potential security risks for a business. With important business documentation and applications now being made available on a host of different devices and connections, your IT department will need to …

How Technology Can Improve Interpersonal Communication

As technology advances, we hear more and more about how disengaged people are becoming as they spend less time talking to each other and more time staring at device screens. But let’s think for a moment about taking advantage of all that staring and turning it into something positive!

How about using those screens to enhance employee collaboration and interpersonal communication? Perhaps instead of asking employees to stay off of social media, turn off their cell phones and disengage from the outside world, instead organizations should shift their focus to finding ways to take advantage of the use of these tools. Because maybe doing so will allow workers to incorporate the technology they love into the business operations, which can increase employee productivity and interpersonal communication.

But how can businesses today make this (sometimes drastic) transition effectively? Here are a few technology transition tips:
Tip #1: Encourage BYOD
Businesses can’t fight the mobile shift any longer, and they’re implementing policies and procedures that promote a ‘work from anywhere’ atmosphere. Allowing an employee to answer emails or conference into a meeting provides the flexibility they need to perhaps catch their daughter’s track meet that afternoon, while still remaining engaged and aware of what’s happening with the business. It’s a convenience that’s seen as a fair trade.

Creating a BYOD (bring your own device) environment keeps employees more deeply connected to the business, encouraging them to respond to emails faster, return phone calls and take care …

Unified Communications: 4 Challenges and How to Overcome Them

The 4 Most Common Obstacles of UC Implementation

The implementation of a Unified Communications (UC) system is becoming increasingly popular for companies of all sizes. Organizations realize these technologies can reduce costs, streamline processes and enhance productivity. These system changes can not only improve the business operations in-house, but also with offsite employees who need to collaborate and connect to various systems in order to work effectively at other sites or mobile locations.

Typically though, no massive system change from a desk phone over to a softphone is viewed as an easy task for businesses. When changing what has become a force of habit for day-to-day business tasks, there may be some growing pains. However, most of these obstacles are manageable as long as proper preparation occurs.

In order to best prepare for the possible concerns with a UC change over, let’s evaluate the most common obstacles:

Obstacle #1 Resistance Giving Up Established Systems

Let’s be honest, sometimes it’s just nice to do things the way we’ve always done them. Many employees feel this way about their phone systems. However, with the proper training program implemented regarding the features and benefits of the new system, the transition becomes more accepted and understood.

Obstacle #2 Financial Concerns

Although UC systems are often a much less expensive option than traditional phone systems of the past, they still require an investment. About 73% of companies with $5,000 or more employees report that cost is an issue for implementing a new system. This concern is partially …