How Partners Like FirstComm are Helping Ease the Shift

A rapidly growing market.

Over the past decade companies across the globe have seen, heard about, or been part of the transition of business communications to the cloud. The concept is by no means a new one, but with the current severity of COVID-19 and the urgency to mobilize a virtual workforce, cloud communications and collaboration offerings are becoming attractive resources for companies looking to ensure business continuity remains strong. And according to Gartner, The global public cloud service market is projected to reach $266 billion in 2020. Keep in mind this was projected pre-COVID, so the numbers are growing rapidly day over day.

That said, shifting one’s business model is never easy, especially when your new operational structure is enforced quickly and with expedited planning and execution. However, that doesn’t mean your cloud transition needs to be daunting, nor should the concerns on shifting from on-premise to cloud (whether a full transition or a hybrid approach) veer you from capitalizing on the infinite world of possibilities cloud based solutions offer. In fact, there are a significant number of benefits cloud-based resources (UCaaS) offer that could significantly improve decisions around bottom line and growth, allowing companies to redirect operations and charge ahead on a more successful path. Let’s explore this further.

Stay Unified: Anytime, Anywhere

What cloud based communications (UCaaS) tools offer is the ability to utilize valuable solutions such as web conferencing, mobile and desktop apps, and a wide assortment of endpoints — to ensure connectivity of your workforce, in most any location using laptops, desk phones, cell phones and even tablets. All your employees need is an internet connection, and all the office functionality they need can be available at home, while traveling, pretty much anywhere. With the ability to work on various devices from various locations, company’s can expect to see higher accessibility and productivity through a unified environment.

A Bottom Line Leaders Will Love

We all know running a business isn’t easy, and more times than not, it requires a significant amount of spend to start up and maintain. Leaders must constantly evaluate and reassess the bottom line, ensuring the overall operational plan is balanced. Although some can argue the upfront costs of software can be hefty, the value that comes from the total cost of ownership is greater. With cloud services you can pay for the usage leveraging the standard subscription model, offering a cost based model of pay over time. This prevents you from spending a large amount or sometimes, all of the allocated budget. Keep in mind, with minimal to no capital infrastructure costs, these “pay-as-you-go subscriptions”, allow a company’s TCO (total cost of ownership) to be more stable and predictable as well.

Increase Security & Recovery Efforts

Although arguments can be made in favor of or against security in the cloud, more and more information is leading towards the idea of cloud communications (with the proper set up) providing a more stable environment than on-premise environments. In fact, “94% of SMBs appreciate the upgrade in security that comes from adopting the cloud“. And typically, the infrastructure the cloud is built on, is designed by nature to have the highest level of security safeguards and resiliency. And more times than not, very experienced staff maintain these infrastructures and processes 24/7 so even when a threat occurs it can be tackled immediately. If you’re worried about lost laptops (which let’s be real, it does happen) you can wipe those systems remotely, removing any sensitive data quickly and easily.

Security to protect from hackers and wipe lost devices, is not the only value add. Disaster recovery is a major business challenge, that oftentimes are not fully planned for, well, until they happen anyways. Sometimes the lack of planning is due to limited funding or lack of insight on the proper operational components. However, the cloud is helping more companies prepare for disasters when they strike. With cloud systems, data can be stored and backed up in the cloud, so if any structural damage occurs the information can be rerouted and saved, minimizing negative outcomes like, lost revenue, loss of customers and expensive equipment replacements.

Integration & Agility for Everyone

One of the growing demands across companies in most every industry, is the need for agility and integration. Many recognize the need to integrate with existing platforms such as CRM, operational programs, and billing (just to name a few). With changing work patterns, shifting technologies, and continual customer demands — there is a growing need for an agile solution that can easily adapt to ongoing demands. UCaaS offerings provide just that. Not only can you easily deploy a remote workforce through apps and virtual security programs, but you can also add new services for your customers or business, and stay up to date with the latest technology by simply keeping your software updated. For those with larger IT teams, you could also consider open architecture platforms allowing for deeper levels of custom integrations through a variety of API sets.

Scalability: The World is Your Oyster

The ability to scale a company is crucial for any business. That said, the ability to scale easily is, what I can assume, every leader’s dream. With UCaaS solutions, you can scale your cloud capacity up or down via remote servers or adjustments to your subscriptions. The level of dexterity available with cloud solutions definitely ensures you keep a competitive edge over your competition. You can enjoy the freedom of unlimited capacity and scope when it comes to evolving you network, at any time. User changes, employee changes, on-boarding demands — it’s all made simple through cloud based unified communications.

Optimize Your Customer & Employee Experience

Some argue that customer experience is one of the most important things a company should focus on. Others argue employee satisfaction is their key priority. Whether you lean one way or the other, or you sit in the middle and recognize one is reliant on the other, the best part is both of these components can be enhanced through UCaaS solutions. From an employee perspective, employee engagement can be simplified while communication channels are expanded, ultimately resulting in: increased productivity, faster response times, facilitation of teamwork and document sharing.

With internal collaboration methods being implemented, this organization will seep into employee-customer interactions. With real-time notifications, easy to access customer data and the ability to measure each customer interaction, companies can measure and refine the user experience resulting in higher levels of customer satisfaction.

The Choice is Yours

Whether you’re just looking to integrate web conferencing into your operational structure or curious about the vast mobility and collaboration tools (4G, Mobile & Desktop, Chat, etc) available, there’s no one size fits all approach and you control the direction that best suits your business. Some folks ease into the transition with a hybrid approach slowly adopting things like SD-WAN and VPN and UCaaS solutions, while others feel confident in the cloud offerings available and jump in with both feet, tackling an entire transformation. The best part is the choice is yours, you control the project scope, time, budget and desired result. Finding the right partner for your journey is key to your success — as they can alleviate fears and concerns around the transition to cloud.

This blog is co-sponsored with FirstComm — A leading technology solutions provider offering Hybrid Network Services, Cloud Communications and Managed Security.

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