Business communications have completely evolved over the last decade or so. Landlines are now becoming obsolete and communicating has gone beyond just phone and email.
Now companies rely on real-time messaging, video meetings, cloud fax capabilities, and cloud VoIP systems to ensure they can stay connected to their customers and each other no matter where they’re working from.
This transformation in how people communicate means that business networks in Chicago and the rest of the world need to evolve to keep communications agile, flexible, and cohesive.
One of the newer technologies that’s come out in answer to this change in how we communicate is Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). It’s similar to Software as a Service (SaaS) in that it’s a cloud-based solution. However, the UCaaS is completely focused on tools that facilitate communications.
So how does a VoIP phone system and UCaaS differ?
Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
VoIP has been used for decades and has been replacing traditional landlines to offer business continuity benefits, cost savings, and anywhere access.
VoIP phone systems use cloud-based communication protocols to enable cloud to landline or mobile calls, but without being tied to a specific location.
A VoIP system will include the ability to answer calls from a computer, mobile device, or special VoIP desk phone. Just like landline-based phone systems, a VoIP phone setup can include multiple company lines and numbers.
Some of the typical features include:
- Call forwarding
- Call transfer
- Auto attendant
- Company directory
- Hold music
- Ring groups
- Voice mail with automatic transcription
- and more
VoIP basically takes your entire phone system and makes it cloud based, so you’re not tied to a physical location.
Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS)
UCaaS goes a step beyond just a VoIP phone system. In fact, VoIP is one part of the entire UCaaS platform.
This type of software service was designed to unify communications, so users have a single place to access different types of communication channels, including messaging, video, phone, and more.
Here are some of the standard services that you’ll find in a UCaaS platform.
VoIP Phone System
The cloud phone system is usually the core piece of a UCaaS solution. The phone service is then enhanced by integrating it with the other pieces.
In a pandemic-impacted world, video conferencing has become a vital part of business operations. According to those in the industry, “five to seven years worth of adoption behavior” has been accelerated in just a few months.
High quality video conference capabilities are included in UCaaS for a streamlined voice to video call experience.
Real-Time Messaging & File Sharing
Many businesses now replace email with messaging. It makes communications more timely and efficient, and facilitates file sharing and message searching.
This is one of the important communication features that you’ll find in a UCaaS that isn’t typically part of a VoIP phone system.
Offices still need to fax documents at times, but many find it cumbersome to keep a physical fax at the office, especially if it needs a phone line connected.
UCaaS platforms have cloud fax capability that allow you to send and receive facsimiles without needing a physical fax machine.
Collaboration Features (Screensharing/Whiteboard)
Another helpful feature of using a Unified Communications as a Service platform is the ability to collaborate with others in different locations.
It typically includes features like screensharing and a shared whiteboard to provide dynamic virtual meeting environments.
Benefits of Using UCaaS Instead of Only VoIP
Here are some of the advantages of upgrading your VoIP system to a full UCaaS Platform.
If you are using three or four different cloud subscriptions to do the same thing as one UCaaS subscription, you’re going to be paying more. By consolidating several services under one umbrella, you lower your monthly cloud cost and administrative costs as well.
More Time Efficient
How much time is your team spending just switching from one app to another throughout the day? 73% of surveyed businesses say it’s taking more than an hour per day off their productivity.
By consolidating your communication applications into a single platform, employees can stay in a single interface, reducing wasted time navigating from one app platform to another.
Improved Customer Experience
When you have a customer message in one app, and a phone call note in another, it can lead to confusion when trying to assist a customer because their communication trail is broken up into different areas.
A UCaaS consolidates different forms of communication, making it easier for your team to provide a better and more informed customer experience.
Learn How ProdigyTeks Can Help You Deploy UCaaS
Keeping your communications integrated and coordinated is important for reducing dropped balls and mistakes. Find out how you can set up a productive and unified UCaaS solution for your Chicago business.
Schedule a free phone consultation today! Call 312-600-8357 or reach us online.