Frost & Sullivan: Finding the Value in Unified Communications -- Understanding the Hierarchy of Return
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Overview: To stay competitive in an increasingly global workplace, companies today must find ways to allow and encourage their employees to communicate and collaborate anytime, anywhere, and from any device. Unified communications and collaboration—an integrated set of voice, video and Web collaboration applications—can enable advanced communications among employees, customers and business partners. But as is true with any technology deployment, IT and telecom executives must be able to justify the necessary investment—and demonstrating a clear ROI is especially critical in these uncertain economic times.
For many companies, the value of UCC can be found in a hierarchy of return, similar to Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Just as people must meet certain basic needs (hunger, thirst, shelter) before they can enjoy more advanced rights (freedom, education, self-actualization, etc.), companies must ensure first and foremost that the technology they deploy is cost-effective and utilitarian. Once that basic requirement is met, they can start looking for ways to leverage technology for more advanced benefits, including improved productivity and revenue acceleration.
This paper examines the four stages of return companies can see from their UC investments: Lower communications costs are followed by lower operational costs, then better productivity, and finally a true competitive advantage. By deploying a cost-effective, open solution that’s fast to deploy and easy to use and manage, companies can move along the hierarchy, so that they quickly experience the highest-value return.