Remote working has been, until very recently, the exception rather than the rule. With the development of the current public health crisis, declared a pandemic by the World Heath Organisation, this has all been flipped on its head. Millions are suddenly coming to terms with a different way of working, using communications interfaces that can do more than just help them make audio calls with colleagues and customers.
Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC) may be new to some, but is already familiar to lots of organisations. The good news is that adoption is fast and intuitive. And now that the UCC genie is out of the bottle, many more people are going to stick by its benefits – long after this terrible outbreak is in the past.
In a nutshell, UCC is the ability to communicate from any place, on any device, at any time – via voice and video calling, messaging, and virtual meeting rooms. Rather than being an adjunct to everyday business processes, it can be integrated with key applications and workflows.
Here are three examples of how UCC is used to support critical activities during these unprecedented times:
The contact centre that nobody commutes to
A physical contact centre with staff on premises cannot operate the same way during a pandemic. UC technology means they can all work from home with no disruption to the customer experience.
– Queuing of inbound and outbound calls and engagements happens in exactly the same way
– Agents can use their own smartphones/laptops, with callers seeing the company ID presented.
– Access to CRM and knowledge management systems is the same, including CTI prompts
– Routing of enquiries within the virtual contact centre is simple, and agents can visualise which colleagues are available and what expertise they have
– Where appropriate, agents can optimise their engagements with customers by sharing screens and launching video sessions
– Supervisors can track live metrics in the usual way, with access to granular reports
Many organisations have switched to this approach as part of activating business continuity plans. But lots were already doing this prior to COVID-19. Why? For one, staff churn is an ongoing concern across the contact centre industry, so offering flexible working arrangements is a good way to keep agents happy and motivated. It also means lower facilities costs because there is no need for office space. Finally, it’s good for the environment – no commuting means significantly lower carbon emissions.
The classroom where no students line up outside
Schools have closed and teachers are falling back on issuing assignments via VLE (virtual learning environment) platforms and other applications. But while these work well to keep track of student needs between physical classes, they typically only support email and messaging communications.
UCC makes it easier for teachers to teach on a one-to-one or one-to-many basis, allowing screen-sharing and supporting video. It makes them easier for students to access too, via presence. The teacher is always in control during virtual class-time, and can mute unruly participants and respond to students who note questions or virtually raise their hands. Screen-sharing enables teachers to show and tell, and for students to check work.
Again, long before COVID-19, these UCC capabilities were already in use in remote communities where lack of physical access to the classroom would have otherwise restricted students’ learning.
The virtual consulting room where patients are treated at a safe distance
The use of UCC in medical settings is far more sophisticated than simply launching a 2-way video chat. Integration with electronic patient records, prescriptions, on-call scheduling and even medical device data and alerts ensures that medical professionals are equipped to make virtual consultations as effective as physical ones. UCC also enables this via mobile devices, increasing the availability of medical staff to provide crucial interventions earlier and assign precious physical emergency resources when necessary.
For those of us who’ve been in the UCC industry since the start, we could never have imagined that the catalyst for such a surge of demand in the technology would be a global virus pandemic. The commercial benefits of UCC are well documented, but these seem to pale into insignificance compared to how vital it is proving to the fabric of society as well as the continuity of businesses.
Jamisi Communications is here to make life simpler and more convenient in an appealing ways. We use different Unigied Comminication tools to make Business operate effectively and efficiently in a competitive market. When you can do this in a business setting, in particular, there can be many benefits for efficiency, earnings, and employee engagement too. Here are several things you should know about the many ways unified communications technology helps streamline processes.
A Jamisi UC solution tools, offers several core benefits:
Enhanced customer service
Those sound good right? Let’s look at them in more detail to help you make your case.
Productivity — Communication is the lifeblood of your organization. With Jamisi UC tools allowing employees to see the status of their co-workers in real time, using presence, the technology helps cut down on wasted time. Also, the UC solution can help team members see on which channels the individual is available for collaboration in order to choose the best one for the task at hand. For instance, this might be IM or video conferencing, and the same UC solution can handle the best choice.
Additionally, UC is consistently accessible from office desks, other locations at your business where work gets done, and from mobile locations. Thus, your team members can seamlessly communicate and collaborate wherever they may be at a given time of day. No matter when your users need to meet, the platform is available.
Cost Savings — Combining multiple communication functionalities in a single integrated platform can see businesses decrease spending on premises-based telephony and messaging, and eliminate the need for chat and video services too. At the same time, a cloud-based Jamisi UC solution can put enterprise-level efficiency and professionalism within reach of the smallest business budget — and the technology can be easily scaled up and down to meet business need.
Let’s consider also the advantages for your IT department. Yes, they will be the ones responsible for deploying the platform, but with just one common environment to roll out they can save time and effort. At the same time, a cloud-based UC provider can take over responsibility for monitoring network usage and managing security.
Enhanced Customer Service — We mentioned already an advantage of presence — that your internal employees can quickly see who is available at a given moment. This can also help your communications with external users. After all, if someone wants to forward a call to another department, they can do so knowing that an individual is there and available, which reduces the customers’ wait time and saves them from having to leave messages. Or, more simply, with UC it becomes easier for an individual to reach out to a fellow team member on a separate channel — while still on the call with the customer — for the needed answer or information.
The efficiency of shared calendar access, instant messaging, and specific call routing tools are just the beginning of the benefits of UC. It’s also easy for employees to move throughout the organization (and off-site) without their customers detecting any difference. Extensions might be temporarily reassigned from a Seattle office to a Sedona one, with any desk phone (or even mobile phone) appearing to be the same direct line the customer usually calls.
Increased Revenue — Jamisi UC tools is a technology that speeds up response time, boosts employee productivity, and improves customer loyalty — all of which are key to increased revenues.
Further, with the ability to save messages, contact center recordings, and conference calls, your business gains the ability to improve processes and better protect itself from legal or compliance concerns. With the insights gained from UC dashboard reporting, your leaders can also identify trends, opportunities for training, and possible pitfalls to avoid.
Unified communications and collaboration (UC&C) is a combination of enterprise communication tools assembled into a single interface and integrated into a single management system. UC&C helps enterprises to overcome the inefficiencies and challenges that were previously siloed and fragmented—focusing on making your company more connected, efficient and productive.
A set of UC&C products includes a variety of communications and collaboration tools including:
Email and voicemail
Calendars and scheduling
Voice and telephony
Web, audio and video conferencing
UC&C offers any organization an array of benefits, providing employees with a consistent experience and interface across all devices, enhancing their ability to telecommute or work remotely. Other ways your company can benefit include:
Increased enterprise productivity and collaboration: Conventional communications tend to be bulky and inconsistent, leaving your employees spending more time on learning different tools, and less time getting work done. With UC&C tools your teams will be able to work together more efficiently and productively through a variety of channels.
Improved user experience: By reducing the need for separate training, user names and passwords, your employees will find UC&C tools easier to access and use.
Reduced IT and telephony costs: With all communications integrated into a single platform, you’ll have less potential failure points and risks of error, reducing the need for constant help from IT.
UC&C simply revolutionizes business communications by offering an all-encompassing, flexible suite of tools to make your business run more smoothly.