Transforming Communication and Collaboration with UCaaS

Presented by Zoom

It’s a hybrid world, and team members distributed across the globe are trying to live in it — sometimes with little success. Communication is fractured across disparate systems and tools, making the IT environment expensive and complex, and slowing down productivity and training on the employee side. Almost 70% of today’s employees aren’t feeling engaged — or are actively disengaging. “Companies realize their best resource is their employees, which is why the future of work is all about employee experience,” says Gary Sorrentino, global CIO at Zoom. “Maybe before the pandemic employees would have just endured a bad experience at work, but today’s workers are actively searching for companies that provide ways to be productive, to communicate and collaborate in a modern manner. An enhanced employee experience is table stakes.”

“Companies realize their best resource is their employees, which is why the future of work is all about employee experience,”

– Gary Sorrentino, global CIO at Zoom

That’s where unified communications-as-a-service (UCaaS) comes in as a critical solution for both digital transformation and company culture. Here’s a look at where communication and collaboration strategies lost the plot, and the ways innovative UCaaS solutions are flipping the script today, by supporting not only the value of collaboration but also the importance of focused, individual work, all in one place.

The Importance of Understanding Users

The challenge, Sorrentino says, is that IT leaders often don’t understand their users as well as they once did; the employees that were sent home three years ago are not the same employees on return, whether they’re back in the office or working in a hybrid environment. Plus, adapting to remote and hybrid environments unlocked brand-new ways to work and to be productive for many employees, and they’re struggling to communicate and collaborate in far less flexible environments.

“IT leaders need a solution that adapts to the way employees want to communicate, instead of expecting them to bend into shape. We have to figure out how to work in different ways and meet in the middle.”

– Gary Sorrentino, global CIO at Zoom

UCaaS: Simplifying Communication and Collaboration

Technically speaking, UCaaS consolidates voice, video and collaboration tools into a single, cloud-based platform that integrates easily into existing systems, simplifying communication and improving collaboration in ways that directly impact operational efficiency and business outcomes. In practice, it’s a platform that lets multiple people work under different modalities — a universal translator that connects employees where they are, rather than asking them to move out of their comfort zone.

“A UCaaS solution offers equity,” Sorrentino says. “It says, how do people want to work? Let’s give them the tools they want, as well as the ability to efficiently switch modalities for their personal workflow. It’s moving seamlessly from browsing to chat to video and so on, because it’s a single experience with many solutions integrated.”

It also eliminates the staggering toggle tax, he adds. A study found that workers toggled between platforms 1,200 times each day — losing about 9% of their working day in the process, as well as adding the cost of context switching.<

“UCaaS offers equity. It says, how do people want to work? Let’s give them the tools they want, as well as the ability to efficiently switch modalities for their personal workflow.”

– Gary Sorrentino, global CIO at Zoom

One of the biggest benefits of aligning an employee and client experience on one platform is clear and seamless communication that not only helps eliminate the possibility of bad interactions, but boosts the success of any connection. Reducing complexity and simplifying platform administration dramatically improves quality of work for IT staff. UCaaS is considerably easier to administer and maintain on the backend, rather than a jury-rigged Frankenstein of multiple tools.

“As companies move forward with rapid digital transformation, a cobbled-together bunch of solutions is difficult to keep updated and can often fail,” Sorrentino adds. “If you have a partner like Zoom that comes out with a highly integrated solution that keeps it all connected, that constantly gives you more functionality and solutions, it just makes it easier to stay ahead of the innovation curve.”

That’s especially crucial as artificial intelligence (AI) takes a growing role in the UCaaS space. Today it offers translation and is integrated into the camera, offering tools such as virtual backgrounds and filters. Overall, AI is quickly evolving to make integrated solutions far more intelligent and serve as an all-in-one digital assistant that helps users work even smarter rather than harder. A trusted technology partner can help ensure your solution is always the latest and greatest.

If you’re ready to investigate an all-in-one comms platform, before talking to any vendor, you want to know exactly what you’re looking for. Determine first what’s missing from your employee experience and your customer experience, and what you need to close those gaps. To that end, a provider should have not only a fully integrated solution, but also look outside of its own borders and integrate with external apps. Then there’s the total cost of ownership to consider.

“If you understand not only what employees want, but what they really need, they’ll be users for life.”

– Gary Sorrentino, global CIO at Zoom

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