UCaaS roadmap starts with deep assessment

July 2, 2018
Tom Mangan

This is the first in a three-part series sharing our tips for creating your UCaaS roadmap.

Once you’ve made up your mind to embrace Unified Communications (UC), it’s time to start building a roadmap to get you there. You’ll need a savvy combination of technologies, processes, and people to make the most of UC opportunities. A robust UC roadmap will keep you moving in the right direction every step of the way.

To build your UC roadmap, you must be clear on two points:

  • The tools you’re already using, and how you’re using them.
  • The new UC tools that hold the most hope for transforming your business.

A three-step process can help you develop the technology-and-features component of your UC roadmap.

Step 1: Assess your equipment

Make an inventory of all your devices—handsets, tablets, smartphones, PBX gear, etc.—including the location of each item. Your UC system has to replicate these device functions, so it’s crucial to document them at the beginning.

Establish priorities for offices, departments, and divisions that should be the first to migrate to UC. Map out a strategy for implementing UC in each of these areas.

Consider a phased migration to reduce the strain on your IT team. Each phase helps you work out the bugs and learn to prepare for problems rather than merely react to them.

Step 2: Identify tools and features

Audit your staff’s communication and collaboration techniques. Find out all the tools they use, how often they use them, and what the tools accomplish. You may find people are using non-business approved applications and tools to plug gaps in your system.

Once you understand your people’s processes and tools, start identifying cloud-based apps and other UC services that can make their jobs easier. Keep a sharp eye out for:

  • Innovative tools people have been doing without.
  • Unauthorized apps and services that haven’t been vetted by your IT team. Make sure you understand why people resort to tools.
  • Business functions that UC tools can transform. You have dozens to choose from; zero in on the ones that can do your organization the most good.
  • Opportunities to improve collaboration. You may be able to meld video conferencing with text messaging to strengthen relationships with customers, for instance.

Step 3: Analyze your underlying network

UC brings a host of high-bandwidth operations into your LAN and WLAN. Make sure your network can cope with the demands of real-time voice and videoconferencing.

If you anticipate that UC will widen your customer base, make sure you plan for expanding your network capacity. A cloud-based UC solution allows you to pay for only what you use, and it can scale with you as your needs change.

Finally, make sure your firewall and other security technologies dovetail with your UC program.

Aligning the present and the future

Crafting a well-thought-out UC roadmap will help ensure that everything you’ve learned from building your business informs the development of your new UC system. CBTS expert engineers can guide you through every aspect of a UC transformation.

For more guidance, download our free eBook on perfecting your cloud communications journey.

Read about Unified Communications from CBTS.

 

Related Articles:

Six ways UCaaS drives business transformation

3 elements to a UCaaS roadmap

UC journey begins with three steps

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