Global market projections indicate that by 2024, the unified communications and collaboration solutions sector might be worth $14610 million. With so many different ways to connect and a world where technology is always changing, businesses today are looking to UC&C to help them streamline their operations, increase productivity, and improve customer satisfaction.
By combining an organisation's various collaboration and communication tools into a single pane of glass, UC&C removes the complexity that regular users might otherwise encounter.
The combination of communication and collaboration technology is referred to as unified communications and collaboration solutions. Until recently, enterprise communications and collaboration providers were mostly separated, with networking and phone companies making up the latter group and software giants like Microsoft and IBM controlling the former.
Unified Communication and Collaboration Solutions (UC&C) refers to integrating technology and software that combines enterprise communication with real-time, asynchronous collaboration capabilities. When UC and workplace collaboration tools are combined, they are available in a single interface. This convergence of capacities has the potential to improve connectivity and productivity.
Moreover, combining these technologies allows for more seamless and secure collaboration. UC&C combines several communication tools, such as telephony, instant messaging, desktop sharing, and web conferencing.
Importance of UC&C in Modern Business Environments
Hosted UC&C aims to address the difficulties associated with contemporary business communications.
Foundations of Hosted UC&C
The foundations of hosted UC&C include:
Unified Communications solutions encompass a variety of components that work together to create a cohesive communication environment:
Organisations can gain many advantages by consolidating communication and collaboration capabilities into a user-friendly interface. Some of the benefits of unified communication and collaboration for an organisation include:
It can be challenging to sort through the many providers offering unified solutions to choose the one that can truly meet your needs. We've outlined the qualities and significance of each potential vendor to assist you in selecting a solution that will yield financial gains:
To free up your IT workers to concentrate on innovation rather than app integration, look for a provider with extensive experience in planning, developing, and migrating complex solution combinations that can be easily integrated with your present environment.
A partner with a broad range of certifications, strong connections to top technology companies, and knowledge of the rapidly changing business and technological landscapes that affect your company are also desirable.
Simple Setup and Control
Simplicity is essential to guarantee that deployment, installation, and maintenance don't cause downtime or undue strain on your IT and support staff. However, you also need to plan for how you will manage your new solution, which means going beyond just implementation.
Businesses frequently find themselves spending excessive amounts of time maintaining dissimilar systems from various vendors that weren't designed to function well together. Make sure you'll only need to manage one vendor and account when comparing platforms to provide the best potential performance from your communications system.
Every organisation has its own set of UC&C criteria. If your company is big, you might value name recognition and go with a reliable supplier with experience providing unified communications service in big settings. However, your main objective can be to combine all of your contracts and services with one provider if your company is small or medium-sized.
However, you might prefer to concentrate on functionality, which includes integrating business capabilities powered by proprietary enterprise systems or removing or adding specific features or controls. In the end, the solution you select should provide the features and capabilities that best suit your needs rather than a one-size-fits-all strategy that is difficult to customise or adjust.
Knowledge of Communications Networks
On your back end, you most likely have a variety of PBXs, conference bridges, SBCs, video MCUs, and other devices. These essential network components have also evolved over time for a variety of reasons. A well-developed Unified Communications solutions provider is independent of hardware and technology, allowing it to adapt to changes in your core network's technology without any problems.
Standardised Interface and Platform
Choose a UC&C provider with a consistent user experience across all devices and operating systems and the ability to function on any common client technology platform. This guarantees that the quality stays high by enabling your consumers to switch between devices without the need for extra training or understanding of the UI.
The main goals of UC&C are to enhance user communications, strengthen internal and external connections, and streamline workflows. While UC&C may greatly assist modern businesses of all sizes and industries, it can only work its magic if the company has the proper implementation plan; if your staff doesn't use the system, not even the greatest one can do anything for your business.
Some employees may readily see the benefits of unified communication and collaboration for an organisation, while others won't be as adaptable. Accordingly, businesses require an adoption plan that enables them to smoothly implement their solutions across the board.
To help you, here are some things you should keep in mind when implementing UC to get more employees to use it:
Also, remember that it can be challenging to stay on top of the vast amount of data you gather when so many individuals are involved in an organisation's daily operations. Today's businesses need to consider how they can incorporate privacy and security safeguards into their unified communication and collaboration strategy as rules, like GDPR, continue to change.
Following networking, security, employee productivity, and user experience, remote and hybrid work was among the top five most stated business characteristics that firms said substantially influence their UC&C strategy in a recent research survey.
Focusing solely on the hybrid workforce, 26% of respondents said accommodating meetings between remote and office workers was their top priority for supporting their UC&C strategy. While 21% said assisting users working from home while boosting communication and employee engagement was their top priority.
However, in order to be genuinely effective, firms must emphasise UC&C projects that link people to one another and to consumers. A hybrid work environment built on a solid, well-designed UC&C foundation that prioritises end-user experience and collaboration can assist enterprises in the following ways:
In fact, according to a study, many of these benefits of unified communication and collaboration for an organisation are either being realised or will be realised in the next 12-24 months.
New regulations and guidelines are continually implemented in all sectors of the communication environment to influence how we gather and manage data. These policies have an impact on consumer data as well as how employers track and monitor their distributed team members.
For example, in the coming years, UC&C suppliers will need to invest even more in technologies and solutions that allow enterprises better control over their data. Companies such as Microsoft have already updated their security posture as they invest more in their UC environment. Moreover, many other firms have begun experimenting with new automated and intelligent methods for tracking and reducing compliance difficulties.
Going forward, practically any firm investing in UC will need to first do a risk assessment of their communication and collaboration landscape and ensure they have the right procedures in place to mitigate vulnerabilities. In the coming years, the brands with the highest security reputations will attract the most customers, new talent, and partnership opportunities.
The worldwide UC&C market will continue to develop, with Gartner projecting a 3.7% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) to $53.5 billion in 2026. So, what advancements and developments can we look forward to in 2023? Here are the top three trends that will characterise the UC&C industry in the coming years:
Organisations must examine how people desire to work when contemplating how to improve their infrastructure for hybrid work success. In a study, about 51% of respondents stated that they want to select their work location - whether at home, in the office, or a combination of the two.
Employees want to make the most of their mixed workday, but they need the necessary tools to do it. In fact, according to reports, 85% of knowledge workers believe that technology is crucial to working productively from any place.
To accommodate this shift in thinking and provide superior technological experiences, UC&C providers will focus on developing devices that allow individuals to work where they choose. Consider the major players in this space, such as Tata Communications GlobalRapide, an end-to-end managed UCaaS that enables enterprises to provide employees with digitally advanced, sophisticated, and intelligent collaboration experiences.
Tata Communications is a one-stop shop for all digital and cloud-first unified communications needs of global organisations with this new solution. It also assists companies in finding the correct collaboration platforms, simplifying migration, providing robust enterprise-grade communications management, and providing end-to-end visibility, monitoring, and reporting on collaboration solutions.
Plus, the solution, which is enhanced with SaaS (Software as a solution) platform-based strategy, training, and insights capabilities, provides enterprises with usage analysis of their collaboration tools, hence increasing service acceptance.
Predictions for the Evolution of UC&C
According to Gartner, contact centre spending will reach $34.6 billion by 2026. This market expansion can be attributed to the increasing adoption of contact centre technology to improve company continuity, expedite customer interactions, and increase customer satisfaction. Gartner also states that the contact centre market has witnessed a significant growth in demand for systems that can handle higher levels of sophistication in:
However, present vendor support for these skills is frequently insufficient to fulfil consumer demand. As a result, manufacturers must rely on technology partners to provide the breadth of solutions that customers demand. In addition, large and complex companies are merging their contact centre platforms across various regions with a single provider as CCaaS solutions get better and offer more value, along with cutting-edge technologies.
Giving your team the tools to enable UC&C will not transform your organisation overnight, but it will certainly help overcome the challenges that modern enterprise communication has. You may exploit this technology's power by implementing a collaboration-based UC strategy. First and foremost, you will be utilising the cloud, which is both safe and strong. You'll also be going beyond speaking capabilities, as it combines every imaginable communication vehicle, from file sharing to video conferencing.