Skip to main content

So, what is this “Unified Communications” thing, anyhow?



So, what is this “Unified Communications” thing, anyhow?

Have you heard the term unified communications tossed around lately? It seems to be used a lot in IT, telecomm, and work collaboration circles. Unified communications is a newer concept that refers to a conceptual platform where multiple communications channels can join together to increase productivity and facilitate collaboration. Here’s one way to look at it. Imagine that you only own one car. And imagine it is a sporty two seater. And then imagine you decide to invite five of your friends, none of whom are able to drive, out to dinner. This means you would have to pick each one up separately and drive him or her to the restaurant. And of course, one of them lives down an old rough farm road, so you have to drive very slowly so you don’t damage the underside of your expensive little two seater.

This scenario is pretty similar to the way we handle business communications today. We aren't able to just throw everyone together in a great big van and go out and have fun. Think about all of the possible ways we communicate and collaborate in the workplace. We use email, vmail, the office phone, our mobile phone for voice, our mobile phone, a chat app, and perhaps an occasional fax thrown in for good measure. Not to mention, the workplace isn't always a specific physical location because a virtual office can exist anywhere. Slowly but surely over the past few decades the tools we use to communicate have multiplied and the locations available to “conduct” business have reached an infinite number. So, instead of driving everyone individually out to dinner, it is time we considered buying a nice big van. And that is the idea behind the concept of unified communications. It is time to look at all of our communications channels and begin exploring how we can combine them to save time and energy, and become more efficient. And perhaps as a bonus, improve the quality of our collaboration and outcomes.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The contact center and omni-channel communications

The contact center and omni-channel communications We’ve talked in other blogs about the value of contact centers over traditional, one - dimensional call centers, but we haven't talked yet about the need for contact centers to be designed on the omni-channel model. This blog explains what omni-channel means and why this is a critical part of the contact center design. Omni-channel refers to a specific model of multi-channel communications. We already know a contact center makes use of many different modes of communications in order to best meet all of your customers wherever they choose to be. But we haven’t talked about the fact that contact centers need to be omni-channel. In the omni-channel model, all of the channels are integrated. The idea here is to allow for cross channel “communication” so that the information and customer data that is accumulated on one channel is immediately communicated to all the other extant channels. The goal: whenever a customer connects on any touc…

The contact center and omni-channel communications

The contact center and omni-channel communications

We’ve talked in other blogs about the value of contact centers over traditional, one – dimensional call centers, but we haven’t talked yet about the need for contact centers to be designed on the omni-channel model. This blog explains what omni-channel means and why this is a critical part of the contact center design.

Omni-channel refers to a specific model of multi-channel communications. We already know a contact center makes use of many different modes of communications in order to best meet all of your customers wherever they choose to be. But we haven’t talked about the fact that contact centers need to be omni-channel. In the omni-channel model, all of the channels are integrated. The idea here is to allow for cross channel “communication” so that the information and customer data that is accumulated on one channel is immediately communicated to all the other extant channels. The goal: whenever a customer connects on any touchpoi…

4 reasons customers prefer contact centers

4 reasons customers prefer contact centers You may have read that call centers are beginning to take a back seat to contact centers, where customers and prospects can interact across a wide array of communication modes. Today we’re discussing four big reasons customers prefer contact centers. As a reminder, contact centers offer customers a variety of communication channels: voice, email, text, chat box, social media, and others. New generations are very familiar with non-voice communication channels and may prefer these channels over voice. People now are accustomed to using non-voice channels for most of their personal and business communications needs. Voice has become a secondary method, at best, for many users.Self-service has become the norm. Customers have become accustomed to self-service options that require no interaction and are available on-demand.Social media has become an important channel of customer interaction. This is a particularly important issue. People use social me…