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UCaaS Plus CCaaS: What are the Use Cases, Where are the Hurdles?

Individually, Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) and Contact Centers as a Service (CCaaS) are hot topics in the enterprise communications space.Put them together and they become even hotter: integrated UCaaS and CCaaS offerings are all the rage thanks to their promise of helping workers both inside and outside of the contact center be more productive.

In the past few years, most UCaaS vendors have worked hard to bring together unified communications offerings and contact center capabilities – either on a single platform or through tight integrations. In fact, it's hard to think of a UCaaS vendor that doesn’t offer some kind of integrated CCaaS offering. Zoom, the most recent UCaaS player, introduced Zoom Contact Center last year. Microsoft, which was relatively late to the contact center game, introduced its own Digital Contact

Center Platform (although it’s not a native Teams contact center solution), and forged partnerships with Genesys, NICE, Anywhere365, and several other CCaaS providers. 8x8, Cisco, Dialpad, GoTo, Intermedia, Nextiva, RingCentral, Vonage, and others all have integrated UCaaS and CCaaS offerings. For their part, several CCaaS vendors have been working closely with the UCaaS vendors to ensure that their solutions can be part of a tightly integrated best-of-breed offerings, while Talkdesk and Edify offer their own UCaaS capabilities.

While some vendors promote their single vendor/single platform approach, others highlight the value of a best-of-breed solution, focusing on seamless integration. Whether a single vendor or an all-in-one best-of-breed solution makes more sense depends on customer need. In general, large enterprises may prefer a best-of-breed approach, while smaller organizations may prefer a single vendor solution. There’s no one right answer.

Rather than focusing on whether a single vendor or a best-of-breed solution is the best approach, organizations should focus on the use cases and how they can get the most out of UCaaS/CCaaS solutions. To date, the primary use case has been the ability for contact center agents to reach out to subject matter experts (SMEs) throughout the organization to help get the information they need to solve a customer’s issue. Some vendors introduced offerings for these “expert agent” capabilities many years ago, but we didn’t have the right technology or mindset until recently. With today’s cloud solutions freeing workers from being tied down, agents and SMEs can be located anywhere and easily communicate and collaborate to effectively service customers.

Another use case gaining momentum is the informal contact center. With basic contact center capabilities integrated with their UC capabilities, teams and workgroups outside of the contact center, such as sales, tech support, marketing, HR/benefits, finance, and others, can better connect and interact internally or externally. For example, IT help desks may get overwhelmed with calls, texts, and emails when new software is deployed or there’s a security breach. HR and benefits departments get inundated with inquiries during open enrollment, while the public relations department may get an influx of calls when there’s a new press release or a PR disaster. With access to contact center capabilities such as routing and queueing, screen pop, call recording, and analytics, these workers and teams can be more effective and productive, improving the customer and employee experience.

While integrated UCaaS/CCaaS is great in theory, there are practical limitations to consider:

  • Should non-contact center agents without the proper training or skills interact with customers?
  • What’s the right pricing and packaging model for these solutions?
  • Is a rip and replace approach needed to get the right technology?
  • How can organizations get buy-in from the purchasing decision makers?
  • What are the security and privacy implications?
  • Is a cloud solution necessary?

Learn More at Enterprise Connect

Enterprise Connect is where enterprise customers can learn about the most important topics impacting the business communications world, and in my humble opinion, there’s no more important topic than the integration of UCaaS and CCaaS (ok, maybe ChatGPT). Once again I have the privilege of moderating a panel of leading vendors on a session entitled UCaaS Plus CCaaS: What are the Use Cases, Where are the Hurdles?

During this session we’ll discuss issues such as:

  • What are the most likely use cases for UCaaS + CCaaS? Is it still built around expanding CX capabilities beyond the agents?
  • How can a UCaaS + CCaaS solution benefit workers outside of the contact center and impact their productivity?
  • What’s the business case for going with a service that integrates UCaaS and CCaaS capabilities?
  • What specific challenges would an enterprise face in deploying an integrated UCaaS + CCaaS service?
  • Best of breed or single vendor – does it matter?

We’ll discuss how customers are actually using and benefitting from integrated UCaaS and CCaaS, some of the challenges, and what to think about going forward. I hope you can join me on Wednesday, March 29 from 3:00 - 3:45 to learn more about why you should consider integrated UCaaS and CCaaS solutions to enhance employee and customer experiences. Be sure to get there early – this is what the line looked like for last year’s session