Unified Communications (UC) is poised to generate $12 billion by 2018 while commanding over 62 billion seats, according to Infonetics Research.
And like other areas in the industry and current business environment, the trend is toward utilizing cloud-based services as opposed to deploying items in house. In fact, Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) is growing by approximately 30 percent each year, according to a recent report from Synergy Research Group. It accounts for close to 8 percent of managed and hosted business voice subscribers.
This trend shows that more and more businesses are realizing the many benefits of UCaaS, and as the marketplace matures, the benefits are sure to increase. Here are a few examples.
3 UCaaS Benefits
Physical infrastructure can be expensive, easily outdated, and difficult to replace. And associated costs are hard to forecast. This can even be true with newer on-premises unified communications solutions.
UCaaS costs are much more manageable. If there are upfront costs, they are minimal. In addition, businesses only pay for the features it needs, and monthly expenses are based on the number of users, which also means operational expenditures (OPEX) are easier to predict.
2. Ease of Transition
It takes time to deploy on-premises unified communications solutions. In addition to purchasing the proper equipment, businesses often need to hire and train new IT staff members to maintain the system.
On the other hand, UCaaS is considered an on-demand service. New features, users, and updates are deployed quickly and easily.
On-premise unified communications can have latency issues or downtime due to unexpected natural disasters, like hurricanes.
While a proper disaster recovery plan is important for any company, unified communications in the cloud can ensure better overall business continuity in the long term. Cloud environments are geo-redundant and have proven to minimize disruptions and increase system uptime.
The UCaaS marketplace is relatively new. Here are two things businesses should consider when transitioning to hosted unified communications.
Deploying on-premises unified communications can offer additional security, control, and customization. However, some businesses are finding that control isn’t worth the overall time and cost associated with purchasing, upgrading, and managing infrastructure.
UCaaS is provided and owned by a managed services provider (MSP) and delivered over virtualized architecture. While MSPs technically own the unified communications, this also means the responsibility, like system updates and fixes, falls on their shoulders.
While those with on-premises solutions do not have as much support, communications also do not solely rest on an outside vendor.
As communications are central to a business’s success, it is important to find the right provider to manage their hosted unified communications solutions. Many UCaaS benefits – like uptime and delivery – are dependent on an experienced, knowledgeable, and reliable MSP.
Overall, when businesses consider the total cost of ownership with regard to unified communications, cloud-based solutions often become more attractive. Streamlined business processes, reduced costs, improved user experience, and overall productivity are just a few reasons why many companies have transitioned to the cloud and more are sure to follow.
Click here to learn how UCaaS can fit your business needs.