25 July 2017

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Unified Communication and Collaboration Tools: Make the Cloud Work For You

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

The average professional spends 19 percent of their time searching for information and trying to gather the right resources. If you're assuming these individuals all put in 40 hours each week, that's 7.6 hours or nearly an entire weekday spent trying to navigate technology that feels unnatural, confusing, or just not unified.

The most effective organizations in 2017 have likely figured out how to use the right technologies in the right ways. Social Technologies that support interactions between colleagues and aggregate information into convenient platforms, such as Unified Communications in the cloud, can revolutionize the way firms work. In fact, some research suggests that implementing tools for communicating and collaborating can increase productivity by 20 to 25 percent.

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11 July 2017

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How Unified Communications is Fueling Team Collaboration and Business Innovation

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

One of the most pressing and universal challenges in business today is communicating effectively. No matter what industry you're in, your success depends on your ability to relay messages internally, to vendors/partners and to your customers. Misunderstandings and lost information are incredibly costly to today's organizations, with experts estimating the impact of miscommunication in the US and UK at $37 billion each year.

While the science of effective business communications isn't simple, it's important to avoid underestimating the value of the right communication technology. Today's cloud-based Unified Communications (UC) tools aren't just an effective way to prevent lost voicemail or phone system outages. They're a means to integrate your company's communications across platforms into a single system that's easy for your employees to use with confidence.

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5 July 2017

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5 Crucial Things to Consider Before Choosing a Unified Communications Provider

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

Finally, everyone in your organization is on board with adopting Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). After learning all the valuable business benefits they are ready to make it happen.

Now what?

Should you call the UCaaS vendor whom you think has the best deal?

Should you opt for a provider who has been touted as the best vendor in your area?

As we’ve written before in this quick list of pitfalls in choosing the wrong Unified Communications provider— there are good UCaaS vendors, and there are also good vendors who just aren't the right fit for your company.

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22 June 2017

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What to Expect When Upgrading to a Unified Communications System

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

When it comes to technical transition, change can be an intimidating thing. The risks associated with any technology implementation can cause fears of disruption, and when it comes to something as crucial as your organization's phones, data, and other communication tools, the risks of service interruption can affect the bottom line.

One-third of organizations today are currently planning to adopt Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). The cost, integration, and convenience benefits of hosted UCaaS are clear. However, the idea of any technology changeover can still feel like a headache waiting to happen. For IT pros in highly-regulated industries or at organizations with complex technical requirements, the idea of implementation planning is particularly scary.

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20 June 2017

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9 Steps to Adopting Unified Communications Solutions

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

Organizations realize the time is right to break up with their clunky old phone systems and make a move to seamless, integrated Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) tools.

UCaaS can allow your company to operate without communication hangups, giving all of your employees access to the data and applications they need from anywhere in the world to get their work done.

It's common for IT to feel apprehension about any technical change and the potential risk of failure. Fortunately, with the right vendor, UCaaS adoption can be truly pain-free. Failing to understand your UC needs or properly train your administrators is a risk that could lead to unsatisfactory results. However, an implementation plan that addresses all of these risks and controls against failure can help you unlock the benefits of UC without fear.

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25 May 2017

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Are You Paying Too Much for Unified Communications Services?

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

Does your monthly UCaaS bill seem a little different than what you expected during initial talks with your vendor? Does it also seem a bit expensive for what you're actually receiving?

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23 May 2017

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How Washington DC Businesses are Putting Cloud Communications to Work

Today's IT pros are focused on optimizing costs and increasing efficiency while conducting low-risk pilot programs on how to innovate with technology. In Washington D.C., cloud communication tools may lend a particular flexibility and security to highly-regulated firms. Currently, 85% of organizations have a multi-cloud strategy in place, which accounts for an estimated 79% of enterprise workloads.

Cloud communication tools are a method of delivering business communications, typically unified communications as a service (UCaaS). Instead of hosting your voice-over-IP (VOIP) telephones and apps on-site, you can take advantage of direct connectivity to a cloud vendor for more agile, integrated, and fast communications.

The benefits range from cost-savings to the ability to change your apps and phone lines in near real-time.

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25 April 2017

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Why Washington D.C. Companies are Finally Combining Their Voice and Data Networks

There's one bill for your Internet connectivity.

There's another bill for phone service. And the phone bill may be split between two vendors... one for local calling and another for long distance calls.

Your business has used multiple service providers for so long, you may not even remember why you chose them in the first place.

This is a common scenario for most Washington D.C. businesses, and one that leads to a growing number of concerns. When your business starts to grow, it can consume more time of your staff.

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12 April 2017

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The 9 Critical Roles Unified Communications Plays in School Crisis Situations

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

Communications are a major component of crisis preparedness for schools. IT directors at colleges and other educational institutions are responsible for helping plan for emergencies that can impact students, families, and staff. The US Office of Justice Programs recommends that organizations have a specific model for response to the four main categories of crisis, which they define as follows:

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5 April 2017

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7 Mistakes Companies Make When Transitioning to Unified Communications

Unified Communications by Tom Collins

Email, voice-over-IP (VoIP) phones, and customer relationship management tools (CRM) have become increasingly popular communication platforms for businesses of all sizes. However, organizations are starting to make the leap to unified communications as a service (UCaaS), choosing a single vendor to handle their VoIP, data, Internet, cloud backup, and other communication needs.

One recent survey of 250 IT managers revealed that 68% are using UC tools beyond email and voice. The most popular UCaaS services mentioned in that survey include:

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