Unified Communications & Contact Center Options – Making the Changeover

Imagine a person calling for detailed, technical information about your products and services. These calls could be cumbersome for customer support employees who don’t possess the technical knowledge about a specific service or product. Agentie PR Now imagine those same customer service employees having a thorough menu on their computer screens describing the exact technical knowledge about that specific service or product, along with other detailed information the inquiring consumer can use to make the best decision right away.

In the world of UC (Unified Communications), technical customer support phone calls are handled and processed significantly differently than they were just a decade ago.

Transitioning to a UC program boosts communications both internally and externally by arming employees with better technology tools that add value to the entire communication process. This short article contains helpful information and insights to assist you in the transition to a unified communications platform.

UC is essentially a unified system for communications in every its forms. Potentially, this can include land-lines and cell phones, e-mail, immediate messaging (IM), VoIP, IP-PBX, fax, voice mail, conference calls, video tutorial conferencing, whiteboard and unified messaging. Your employees will have presence inside your business communications – whether they are physically at work or not.

The concept of presence is easy to comprehend within instant messaging in which a “buddy status” is available at a glance. UC takes this a action more by grouping these “buddies” along by specialized expertise and attaching them to specific knowledge areas. All of this would be offered by a glance.

UC permits real-time delivery of all these forms of communication within a single environment that customers can access within a simple interface. For example, customer service staff could have a list of employees knowledgeable about something, along with the most practical method for immediately contacting that person who gets the correct answers about the information on the product.

By simply clicking a contact icon, a call up can be made, or perhaps a page or a whiteboard session accessed to bridge key home elevators the merchandise, customer and employee contacts concurrently. If your business doesn’t already have it, Unified Messaging (UM) can provide communications integration, albeit on an inferior scale than UC.

Unified Messaging is with the capacity of grouping together communications from various sources, such as for example e-mail, faxes and tone of voice mail, but does not allow (in all instances) real-time distribution. Unified Messaging methods store these multi-program communications for the user to access information at his or her discretion.

Still, currently, UM does provide improved communication synchronization to an extent that has been not available just a decade ago. It is very important understand that while UM possesses efficiencies by grouping communications collectively; it is not the same thing as UC. Oftentimes, these phrases are interchanged and interpreted to really have the same meaning.

Again, they are not the same. Tying communications mutually in a UC platform can have a tremendous positive impact on productivity at your organization. Businesses with offices across the globe have an excellent possibility to synchronize communications as they occur around the clock instantly. Additional functionality allows telephone calls to be routed according to preset rules.

For example, if an employee is working at a remote location beyond your office, the UC technique can route a call to their cell phone and a voice message into their voice mail. At the heart of UC is the Voice-over Internet Protocol (VoIP) systems that allows analog phone conversations to be transmitted over the Internet. UC basically expands that features by allowing different communications through the same protocol. Transitioning to UC doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process.

First, consider what usable technology your business currently has and how those resources could be integrated into the brand new platform. Consider what communications are already transmitted using the Internet Protocol (IP). It could be that your business is only several steps from integrating these into a truly unified format that dramatically increases productivity.

Another advantage of introducing UC to your business is enhanced security inside your company’s communications that was never offer before. Without UC, communications occur over numerous data formats using multiple protocols, and you may not need control over certain data. Integrating these data types using UC gives your organization the opportunity to better manage the overall communications process.

The necessary equipment for creating a UC infrastructure includes various applications and hardware equipment. The Microsoft edition of the UC solution is made around the Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 and the Microsoft Office Communicator 2007 for the user interface. Microsoft, needless to say, is geared toward the program UC solution. Its server software program is designed to be deployed on a separate communications server.

Cisco, the IT hardware tools manufacturer most widely known because of its routers and switches and its own reputation because the “backbone of the web,” also offers software UC solutions, combined with the necessary hardware devices. Cisco is more widely known as a hardware company; hence naturally, the business’s UC solution is more hardware-based.

The two big players in the world of IT have developed UC solutions. Which one is best for you is often a function of your specific requirements and your company’s monetary resources to aid and maintain the technology. Remember that there are tailored solutions available from both Microsoft and Cisco tailored for the size of your business.

Microsoft’s Office Communications Server 2007 comes in two editions: Standard and Business. The Standard Edition is intended for SMBs which have one server platform using one machine. Combined with the accompanying Standard Client Access Permit (CAL) it permits messaging, peer-to-peer video and tone of voice, and file transfers all to occur within an integrated and familiar Microsoft Work place.