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Some Light on the UC Confusion Debate

An industry associate of mine wrote some really interesting comments about the first post, "...Looking for UC in All the Wrong Places?" Here are a few of his key points:

 

One of the great things about UC is that it broadens the use of communications and offers the ability to embed communications into business process formally or informally.

Contact centres were the first opportunity to drive some formal business process into what might be considered white collar work. But since then, not much had really changed. Manufacturing, on the other hand, had taken the whole Kaizan, six sigma think to heart, dramatically and constantly changing the way they worked. But I think UC is really changing that.

The challenge is that people want UC to be one 'thing', one way of doing things, to make it easier to think about or talk about. But it isn't. One of the great things about IP enabling communications is that it allowed us to break communications down into components of the whole and mix and match how they are used. It also allowed us to do things differently--no longer burdened by some of the physical constraints of TDM based systems.

But while customers, smart as they always are, see value in some element of UC that allows them to improve a process or way of doing business, the cognoscenti--the business analysts, consulting companies, et al--are trying to do what they always do and that is to define what has happened and why it happened. But because UC is simultaneously simpler and more complex than they think, they are having a hard time in grasping the potential.

Contact centres were the first opportunity to drive some formal business process into what might be considered white collar work. But since then, not much had really changed. Manufacturing, on the other hand, had taken the whole Kaizan, six sigma think to heart, dramatically and constantly changing the way they worked. But I think UC is really changing that.

The challenge is that people want UC to be one 'thing', one way of doing things, to make it easier to think about or talk about. But it isn't. One of the great things about IP enabling communications is that it allowed us to break communications down into components of the whole and mix and match how they are used. It also allowed us to do things differently--no longer burdened by some of the physical constraints of TDM based systems.

But while customers, smart as they always are, see value in some element of UC that allows them to improve a process or way of doing business, the cognoscenti--the business analysts, consulting companies, et al--are trying to do what they always do and that is to define what has happened and why it happened. But because UC is simultaneously simpler and more complex than they think, they are having a hard time in grasping the potential.

I think my correspondent's points are very powerful and very well made. I especially like his observation that we who observe and comment always want to boil it down to one "thing". Yet, as he says, the fact that UC is simultaneously simpler and more complex is going to keep us grasping for a while yet to come.

So far, I only have three comments for my associate:

1.) You're right on target. Keep the comments coming.

2.) That's why we at UCStrategies.com have defined two categories of UC: UC-U which is the simpler UC-User Productivity category; and UC-B which is the more complex UC-Business Process category. The latter, UC-B is the one that looks more like call centers and we all know how much money has been saved and made in call centers!

3.) The proof of all this is in how the customers actually choose to adopt the technology, which is why I continue to champion the user case studies from any source and the user panels at VoiceCon. Nothing speaks as loudly as the voice of a successful leader.