UCaaS (Unified Communications as a Service)
UCaaS is a cloud-based communications service delivery model that offers the necessary infrastructure, applications, and resources that companies need to streamline their communication strategies.
Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) is defined as a cloud-based service delivery model that offers all the necessary infrastructure, applications, and resources that organizations need to streamline their various modes of communication.
These modes include chat, telephony, SMS, video conferencing, VOIP etc. It equips companies with the capability to centralize their entire communication architecture and provide access to a range of turnkey applications and services without the need to invest in bulky IT hardware or specialized support teams.
In this article, we explain what Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) is today, when to choose UCaaS versus similar solutions such as VoIP; the benefits and advantages, pitfalls related to UCaaS deployments, and UCaas deployment models available today.
Advantages of UCaaS
Today, companies continue to make the switch to UCaaS in an attempt to transform both their internal and external communication. An optimized service model to support the mobile workforce in the digital age, cloud UC services offer the independence and advanced integration capabilities that digital-first companies of all sizes and across industry verticals demand.
As a cloud-based offering, UCaaS systems provide superior scalability and flexibility for organizations in highly dynamic business environments to expand and scale their communications functionalities without significant investment of time or resources. . It can also be a good option for companies that need to quickly remove and add new employees to their environment, allowing easy onboarding or separation of staff without significant infrastructure changes.
UCaaS provides a range of benefits to businesses that adopt the technology, including cost-reduction, scalability, flexibility, disaster recovery, and improved functionality. Let’s delve deeper into some of the benefits that firms can leverage by adopting UCaaS platforms..
1. Employee productivity and efficiency and collaboration
UCaaS platforms offer improved functionality that allows users to interact seamlessly across multiple channels and enhance their communication or collaboration strategies. Employees can switch seamlessly between voice, video or instant messaging without compromising on the user experience, at the click of a button, without disrupting the conversation for other attendees.
Seamless integrations with high-quality video conferencing tools enable organizations to initiate lively and real-time interactions in virtual meetings similar to face-to-face interactions. This, in turn, drives quality engagements with employees, clients, and partners around the world without hefty travel costs.
UCaaS adoption drives the efficiency of remote workers by providing them access to all the company’s communication tools from anywhere, regardless of location or time zones. This can go a long way in supporting business reach and boosting employee productivity. New concepts in employee communication are easily accessible and that helps keep companies at the cutting-edge of best-in-class communication solutions.
2. Save on the cost and effort of system administration and maintenance
A major benefit of migrating one’s UC systems to the cloud from legacy architecture is the significant cost savings that a hosted service offers by shifting the expense from capex to opex. There are no upfront inventory costs as the provider hosts the equipment at their facility and gives access to the services via the cloud. The ‘pay-as-you-go’ model ensures that customers pay only for what they need, which results in significant cost reduction both in the short-term and long-term.
Additionally, UCaas eases the burden of IT teams by taking care of all the system maintenance and upgrades, thereby freeing up IT’s time to focus on mission-critical tasks that have a more direct impact on the company’s growth. With multiple clients and thousands of endpoints under management, providers can administer their systems more efficiently and cost-effectively than the clients.
3. Access to cutting-edge security
Cybersecurity is a key concern in today’s increasingly connected world owing to the rising number of organized cyberattacks on enterprise networks. Consolidating multiple communication channels under a UC system can enable businesses to secure vulnerable endpoints better and make security aspects easier to manage. With a cloud service provider, businesses have access to the most rigorous security measures and technologies in place to protect against new forms and mechanisms of cyber threats that surface almost every day.
As cloud vendors are exclusively focused on keeping their equipment and services updated and reliable, they invest adequately to ensure end-to-end security for users. It would be almost impossible for in-house IT teams to keep up with the daily demands of cyber threats and ensure security, patches and system updates to handle them. Adopting a cloud UCaaS that features adequate certifications and expertise in security can go a long way to safeguard your data as well as boost your company’s reputation in the market, although there are still several obligations that users need to fulfill to ensure systems are not misused at their end.
4. Superior Scalability and Reliability
Cloud-based UC systems offer unlimited scalability to its clients, assisting firms to quickly add or remove users and functionality based on dynamic market demands. This allows buyers to expand their communications capabilities as the company grows, scaling up capacity in an almost unlimited manner, or adjust to seasonal changes in demand in the most cost-effective manner.
Another benefit of embracing UCaaS is the enhanced reliability that the cloud delivers to streamline operations. Many providers own in-built geo-redundancy features in their architecture that ensures continuous availability, and minimal downtime. This ensures that even if one equipment goes down, another one in a different location kicks in and if one channel fails, you can seamlessly switch to another without affecting the user experience.
Cloud service providers focus specifically on maintaining and repairing their equipment and dedicate significant resources to deliver superior reliability for the customers. They also offer disaster recovery plans and adequate backup options to ensure any risks are mitigated.
For businesses with operations and employees spread across the globe, this can be a significant factor as it enables the most cost-effective and reliable way to deploy UC solutions globally.