As the industry leaders in the Collaboration and Business Communication (UC) space continue to battle for the control of the end user workplace experience; Corporate IT leaders are facing a hard choice for their primary Collaboration and Business Communication services. The major UC players based on the Gartner MQ, (Marty Parker August 14, 2017) are offering solutions that offer overlapping services; and the effort to support multiple and redundant services within the same organization is expensive and taxing on internal resources and very confusing for end users.
Many large organizations have an Office Productivity solution and a separate Voice/Video/Conferencing solution. Look at the table below and see how the overlapping services are showing up within your enterprise.
As illustrated above many of the service offerings overlap, and IT organizations are paying at least twice for similar services. Therefore, IT organizations need to partner up internally (messaging, phone, file storage teams) and investigate and understand the holistic business requirements and needs of their end users, so they can select the correct vendor offerings and not over buy or take on the support of too many applications.
Based on your company’s needs and preferences the four items below can strongly influence your decision. The four distinguishing services and their requirements come to light are:
File sharing and storage needs of the enterprise
File sharing is now included in many of the enterprise offerings, causing the IT organization to pick one for the enterprise – while paying for two or more.
External file sharing, is it required? Are you prepared to monitor it?
Size of your “day to day” audio conferences
Most day to day audio conferences are less than 15 people, do you need a system that can support a 1000 concurrent connections every day?
Consider a separate solution for large company meetings and operated assisted / industry conference calls.
Office Productivity software
Subscription vs purchase?
Browser only or hardware installed?
Updates and new release strategy?
Call Center Requirements
In house, hosted or outsourced?
How much real interaction is needed between your call center staff and rest of your organization?
Is maintaining a call center infrastructure a competitive advantage for you?
If you look outside the highly integrated offerings, and go the route of self-integration of several industry solutions, you take on the added strain of cobbling together multiple authentication processes, threat monitoring needs and a decrease in leverage when negotiating commercial terms and support agreements.
Careful planning and “real end user” assessments will assist you in reducing the overall burden on your IT organization, reducing costs and simplifying your end user experience by limiting the options and fully deploying the integrated solutions you select.
Chuck Lear is the Founder of the Consultants Collective member firm, Lear360, a global Modern Workplace, Unified Communications and Collaboration solution advisory and program management partner. Throughout his career, Chuck has assisted Fortune 100 and industry leading companies with their IT Strategy and Organizational Change challenges. Over the past 11 years he has managed the deployed over 40,000 users on modern Business communications and collaboration solutions from industry leaders such as: Microsoft, Cisco, and Box. Focusing on solution comparisons and maturity, the cost benefit analysis, and the most effective deployment and adoption strategy for end users. Lear360 has worked closely with CIOs, business leaders and their staffs; bringing clarity and understanding to what is Collaboration and Unified Communications and how they can be used as a competitive and cost-effective advantage. He holds a BA in Communication and an MBA in Strategic Planning and Program Management.