Some enterprises are starting to explore deploying Unified Communications in a Hybrid capacity – that is, one site (say the headquarters site) deploying an on-premise system, with satellite offices being on a cloud UC deployment. All on the same overall company Unified Communication system, so employees all have the same look and feel with the system, and have the same directory to use, same dialing plan, etc. In effect, one extensive company phone / UC system deployed in different ways for the various sites.
First of all, why would a company want to do this and not just put everyone on the cloud? There are many benefits of going cloud; not needing dedicated IT staff for the phone system, not having to deal with updates, not having to layout CAPEX to purchase the system); many companies still deploy premise because it makes sense for them.
They may want to use a CAPEX model to put in a system because they intend to keep this system for a long time or because that’s how their budgeting works, or they may want more “control” over the phone system because they don’t want everything in a cloud, or they want to still have some PSTN connectivity just in case of internet outages from the big providers (which are also possible), and they want to do this just from one site. Whatever the reason, it makes sense for that business to deploy premise at that one site.
But let’s say that business is growing and now has sales offices scattered across the country. I’ve been part of companies like this. And each office would have a different PBX. When we dialed them from the HQ office, we’d need to do the complete nine-digit dialing, and I’d need to use a phonebook to find their numbers. In other words, these systems weren’t connected in any way. It was like calling a partner or customer.
There are other benefits to moving from cloud to satellite offices. I’ll explore that next week.