When employees transitioned to remote work and geographically dispersed teams became more common, reliable communications rose to the top of businesses’ priority lists. This new way of working, along with technology advances, such as using artificial intelligence (AI), voice assistance, and machine learning (ML), is driving healthy growth in this market. Fortune Business Insights predicts the global Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) market to grow at a CAGR of 13.4 percent to reach $69.93 billion by 2028.
Make Sure UCaaS Solutions are the Right Fit
The UCaaS solutions you provide are likely to look somewhat different for each of your clients—and if you provide solutions and services to clients that range from enterprises to small businesses, they could look very different.
Unified communications can include telephony, video conferencing, messaging, mobile capabilities, and third-party integrations, such as Slack, Salesforce or Microsoft 365. However, not all clients will need all of the features that you can provide via your UCaaS solution.
David Goodwin, Managing Partner and Co-Founder of Advanced Technology Consulting (ATC), recommends performing an audit for each client before designing a new system. He suggests taking inventory of the customer’s locations, users and whether they’ll work on-premises or remotely. You also need to understand their workflows—do they video chat, share screens, or rely on voice or messaging? You also need to assess the company’s network to see if it can support the UC features they need.
What to Include in Your UCaaS Offering
Even though your clients may need different unified communication features, they will all demand specific features of your offering, including:
- Technical support: Whether your vendor partner or your team will provide support, ensure they receive prompt responses, knowledgeable help desk teams, and effective resolutions that close tickets quickly.
- Reliability: In an era of remote work, video sales meetings, and collaboration with teams that can span the globe, downtime will disrupt productivity. Choose a platform that ensures your clients always have the means to communicate.
- Time-Savings: Choosing UCaaS shouldn’t create a burden for your client’s IT team. Make sure the solution requires little intervention by end users.
Don’t Make These Mistakes
To provide the great customer experiences, reliability and time-savings that your clients expect, there are also a few UCaaS mistakes to avoid so you can deliver:
- Inadequate network: Ensure your client’s internet service, infrastructure, including firewalls and routers, and the business’ own network can support UCaaS.
- Wrong priorities: Your clients may focus on video but ensure that you optimize voice communications.
- Not creating a single user identity: Users aren’t only working from one computer at a desk. The optimal user experience is when users have the ability to connect however they want, from any device, and not have to think about how they’re logging in and where they’ll find information on those interactions later.
- Trying to fake it until you make it: UCaaS requires knowledgeable providers who can optimize solutions and support them. Educate yourself before launching an UCaaS offering. It’s vital to build strong vendor relationships, understand each solution they offer and have a skilled team of technicians.
The Importance of the Right UCaaS Vendor Partners
It doesn’t take long for managed services providers (MSPs) who offer UCaaS to realize there is a wide range of potential vendor partners, from established telcos that provide unified communications to newer, software-based solution providers. You need to form partnerships that will result in solutions that your market needs.
When you’re choosing a UCaaS vendor partner, remember to look for:
- Remote access: Ensure the solution allows you to pinpoint, troubleshoot and resolve issues remotely for the greatest efficiency and customer satisfaction.
- 24/7 support: Communications systems issues must be resolved immediately, not just during regular business hours.
- Vertical expertise: If your industry focus is healthcare, your UCaaS partner should have expertise in that area also. It’s not just a factor of providing the types of features that your clients need; it also ensures that the solution is compliant with regulations such as HIPAA or HITECH.
Also, make sure the UCaaS vendor’s channel program offers the product bundles, support, and margin that makes the partnership worthwhile for your business.
Make the Most of the Opportunity
Researching UCaaS vendors, educating yourself on their solutions and the industry, and staying focused on providing the best solution will result in the communications capabilities your customers need—and the greatest growth potential for your business.
Do you need a place to start? See our side-by-side UCaaS product comparison.