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Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) offers a variety of benefits to companies interested in collaborative technology and a seamless customer experience, but knowing when it’s time to migrate to UCaaS can be challenging. Employees resisting change or a legacy phone system with an associated contract may muddle the decision further.

It’s best to approach the choice to migrate to UCaaS with a clear set of considerations:

Assess the current technology. If a company already has a UC system that’s on-site, it’s best to begin by talking with the provider about a hosted solution. It’s possible that the current technology can be upgraded to an as-a-Service option that has additional features and turns the management over to the provider.

Determine whether the company can afford to wait. If competitors are already using a UCaaS solution, they may be creating opportunities for collaborative innovation and streamlining processes in ways that will make others obsolete if they don’t match the pace.

Think about mobility. For companies prioritizing employee mobility, the decision to migrate to UCaaS becomes pretty clear. Through any device with Internet connectivity, employees are able to utilize collaboration tools and shared workspaces. This might seem like an initiative for a big corporation, but for small companies where employees wear a lot of hats, UCaaS provides access to increased agility in their roles.

Factor in both long- and short-term impact of the technology. Particularly for a small business, it may be more difficult to see cost savings and other benefits. It’s important, then, to draw out the return on investment through the expected life of the solution. A small business should not give up on UCaaS right away, even if the benefits aren’t immediately clear.

Consider the impact on existing infrastructure. While UCaaS doesn’t require its own network, it can put more pressure on the network, and cloud-based phone systems rely heavily on network reliability. If the network isn’t prepared for the heavy traffic that can come with UCaaS, there may be issues with latency or dropped packets.

Carefully document processes. Begin with your existing technology and how it’s being used in relation to critical business processes, documenting each step. Add in how it’s expected that the new technology will impact tasks, such as detailed estimates of how features like instant messaging and screen sharing could positively affect productivity and customer service.

Ask the provider what’s being offered. There are a lot of differences in managed services providers, and when it comes to UCaaS, there are many considerations that should be part of the conversation. Address areas like security, disaster recovery, scalability, and how the technology will fit into current business processes.

Build a strategy for buy-in and training. One of the more challenging aspects of implementing new technology is simply building momentum around the change. Be sure to include the contribution of key stakeholders when choosing between solutions. Schedule plenty of time for training and questions and get as many people involved in ownership of training modules as possible.

When it’s time to migrate to UCaaS, contact us at Access One. In addition to UCaaS, we offer a variety of managed services for businesses.