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5 Must-Have UC Tools

Unified Communications (UC) is becoming increasingly popular. Grand View Research attributed the rise in adoption of unified communications to a changing workforce dynamic.

More organizations are employing remote workers. Companies are also expanding their reach, setting up geographically diverse locations and satellite offices. Due to these changes in the way companies do business, the global UC market is predicted to rise to over $167 billion by 2025.

In addition to bridging the gap between company headquarters, satellite offices, and remote workers, UC empowers employees to collaborate on projects and stay in communication with clients and customers. Furthermore, UC makes it easier for employees to work at home, and has a positive impact on the environment: employees eliminate the need to drive to the workplace, reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Eliminating the office commute also improves employee satisfaction by eliminating frustrating commutes to the office and saves workers time and money on gas and auto wear and tear.

With the right UC tools, your company can explore the full potential of communication and collaboration. These tools include file sharing, web conferencing, single-number reach, instant messaging, and VoIP.

Here’s a closer look at the benefits of 5 desirable UC tools:

1) File Sharing

file-sharing-with-firstlightWhen workers collaborate, they drive innovation. Employees brainstorm together to develop new products and services, as well as to find better ways of accomplishing tasks.

File sharing makes it easier for employees to collaborate on projects, even if they work in separate locations. Employees can freely access files. Version control enables members of a team to stay current on the status of the project. Team members don’t need to worry about duplicating work. Everyone is on the same page.

2) Web Conferencing

Web conferencing makes it possible to hold live meetings between employees, customers, and vendors. A video conference creates the feeling of a face-to-face meeting. A web conference allows participants to ask questions and seamlessly engage in conversation as though they were in the room.

With web conferencing, companies can give presentations, perform demos, and conduct employee training. There is no need for workers or clients to travel, so meetings can be scheduled more easily. The need for a low-latency network is more critical than ever if organizations are to realize the full benefits of web conferencing and eliminate the annoyance of jitter, packet loss, and disconnects.

3) Single-Number Reach (SNR)

single-number-reach-with-firstlightSingle-number reach increases employee availability. Instead of calling a desk number only to reach voicemail, customers, clients, and other employees can dial one number and reach workers wherever they are located. The call can be automatically transferred to a mobile phone at a home office or in a remote location.

When customers and clients can reach an employee directly, they feel like they are being treated well and are receiving personal attention. This special treatment increases customer satisfaction and encourages loyalty. A survey conducted by PH Media Group revealed just how important a call to a customer service rep can be: 59% of participants said that if the first call to a company’s customer service line isn’t handled properly, they wouldn’t buy from that business (https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/270217).

4) Instant Messaging

The Global Work Connectivity Study found that employees spend 50% of their day communicating digitally, with 15% communicating through text messaging and 12% using instant messaging. Instant messaging allows employees to communicate in real time, creating the sense of having a conversation. Employees can have informal discussions and get quick feedback.

Coworkers can share ideas and resolve issues without being in the same place. With instant messaging, workers don’t end up playing telephone tag.

5) VoIP

voip-services-communications-with-firstlightVoice over IP (“VoIP”) is a cost-efficient way for companies to communicate. With VoIP, organizations can eliminate long-distance charges. Organizations no longer need to provision and upgrade telephones.

VoIP is the foundation for UC. For example, the IP creates a connection between a desktop phone and a mobile phone. Calls are automatically forwarded, so your business never misses a call. Customers are forwarded to the right person to answer their question or resolve a problem. 

Supporting Your Company’s UC Tools

Your UC tools are only as good as the network that supports them. It’s no use having web conferencing, IM, and VoIP if your video is choppy and cuts out, your messages won’t send, and your audio is filled with static.

FirstLight supports all its UC offerings with the most extensive high-speed fiber optic network in the Northeast. Our Cloud Communications offerings deliver voice, video, and messaging with low latency, jitter, and packet loss. Our customers benefit from a state-of-the-art phone system and a full suite of UC tools.

Learn more about how UC tools will enhance your workplace communication. Get a copy of our UCaaS Fact Sheet.

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