[ITEXPO Panel] Using Unified Communications to Convert Wasted Time to Productive Work

Jim Machi
VP of Marketing, Sangoma

Last Thursday, I was on a UC panel at ITEXPO. This was an interesting panel because it was about us as employees being bombarded by all kinds of communication tools and whether these tools are really helping us, or whether are we just robotically utilizing these tools all day.  Like, are you really able to get anything done? By the way, this is not really a new topic. When email first came into business, these very kind of panels were formed to discuss the use of email and whether they were useful or not. At that time, some companies were turning off email for an hour a day. What goes around comes around!

Anyway, as readers of this blog know, the topic of quantifying UC productiveness has been top of mind for me. Sangoma sponsored two different studies into this in the last couple of years (one with Eastern Management Group, one with Frost and Sullivan).

Part of the panel, though, also delved into whether an organization has “too many” tools of the same ilk. Like marketing uses a different one from engineering who uses different UC tools from support and then it’s an issue to “talk” to that one group in their “language.” And that can be a problem in larger companies.

However, launching new products and services is also important. To me, this is about the entire UC value prop. There are many elements of UC, and it’s doubtful a user, during the initial deployment, utilizes all of them from the get-go. We frequently see customers who like 1 or 2 elements of UC and that’s why they buy it, yet over time they really like other functions that weren’t part of the purchasing decision. And these other functions enable new services that they hadn’t thought of before. For instance, with mobility, your office phone number can ring on your smartphone. And since your smartphone is with you at all times, maybe you can offer expanded service support times and charge more for that. 

Anyway, it was fun and productive.

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