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What’s Your Opinion of UCaaS and CCaaS?

If you have aging on-premises UC and contact center systems, and want better solutions, you can’t avoid looking at cloud-based services.
By buying UC and contact center software as cloud-based subscription services, you can reduce costs, improve operational efficiencies, and increase employee and agent productivity. As is oft-touted, cloud communications allows businesses the opportunity to:
  • Quickly implement advanced features and functions with low CAPEX
  • Reduce the risk of technology obsolescence
  • Gain access to expert outsourcing organizations, avoiding ownership and operation
  • Change IT staff assignments to more important projects
  • Scale resources up and down as the business changes
  • Businesses can remotely manage systems, users, and agents
The Frost & Sullivan brief, “Learn How Modern Businesses are Thriving with the Cloud,” points out that there are still challenges when moving to cloud-based services. These include: security, multivendor management, and network stability and reliability.
What’s Important?
As discussed in the Masergy-sponsored IDG report, “2020 UCaaS and CCaaS Market Trends Report," UC and contact centers are mission-critical and important to digital transformation. When these don’t work well, they can directly impact daily business operations by impairing productivity and delivering poor customer experience.
Businesses must address the challenges with UCaaS and CCaaS deployments, as well as security and network performance. As IDG noted in the report, 70% of respondents to its survey on cloud communications reported discovering data security challenging, especially considering the domestic and European regulatory mandates around the sensitive or private client data that they’re collecting, generating, and storing via UCaaS and CCaaS (see IDG graphic below). The difficulty is consistently delivering data security in global services (95% of the respondents see this as critical or very important) while producing high levels of network performance and reliability (91% see this as critical or very important).
IDG survey data
Source: IDG
The ability to integrate UCaaS and CCaaS into existing enterprise applications such as CRM and workforce management is critical or very important to 91% of the survey respondents. I think once an organization begins such integration, it should find it more critical than reported.
Bundle or Not
When addressing possible barriers, many businesses are considering managed service providers and bundled solutions, as discussed recently on No Jitter by UC consultant Tim Proctor. Organizations might consider UCaaS and CCaaS from the same provider or a hybrid solution from a third-party provider.
Most (93%) IDG survey respondents reported that it is highly important that their UCaaS/CCaaS solutions come bundled with network services from a single provider. Slightly fewer respondents, at 90%, identified a fully managed service with 24/7 monitoring as highly important. Enterprises are looking for proactive more than reactive performance problem resolution.
When it comes to security, 93% of respondents find it critical or highly important that security features and services are bundled in UCaaS/CCaaS solutions. Additionally, 90% of respondents said support for software-defined networking (SDN or SD-WAN) is another important criterion, while slightly more than half of respondents said they use SIP trunking with their UCaaS/CCaaS solutions (51%). About half of the respondents indicated they prefer a pre-integrated UCaaS/CCaaS solution from a single provider.
A bundled solution reduced friction and can:
  • Deliver improved global service visibility
  • Improve security protection
  • Be easier to implement, manage, and integrate
  • Reduce the number of vendors
  • Create a single point of contact for the network
IDG survey data
Source: IDG
As we’ve learned during our current COVID-19 crisis, UCaaS and CCaaS have proven essential for business continuity in allowing business users and contact center agents to work from home.