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2015: The Year of the User

May 01, 2015 by

2015 is the Year of the User, according to No Jitter. While unified communications solutions aid businesses in staying connected with their clients, they need to be streamlined to increase collaboration and communication among coworkers. This year is bringing companies user-friendly platforms that will allow for easy teamwork.

UC Promoting Collaboration

Providers are working to make UCaaS more social, paving the way for collaboration between coworkers and departments. Improved UC solutions will combine instant messaging, file sharing, and video and audio conference to allow for easier communication between employees. While UC provides these tools for businesses, the goal is to tailor them to fit interoffice needs, TechTarget explained.

"Users are no longer at the mercy of IT," Bill Haskins, partner and senior analyst at Wainhouse Research, LLC, told the source. "Employees now have the knowledge and access to cost-effective and free services that can provide most, if not all, of the services that IT can provide, and they'll just go out and get the tools they want themselves."

While there is a plethora of UC tools that can be used with an on-premise system, the cloud offers easier collaboration while freeing up server space. Now that businesses know what UCaaS is and how it will benefit them, the goals have shifted to provide a worker-friendly system that will allow for mobility without hindering their responsibilities, No Jitter explained. Cloud-based services allow for everything related to the business to be accessed from any device and any location,  providing flexibility for workers. At the end of 2014, 63 percent of businesses had at least one UC app in the cloud, while approximately 33 percent utilized the hosted service for email and calendars, according to TechTarget. The transition to the cloud allows for easy access for all employees.

Increased UC Usage By 2022

A recent Transparency Market Research study showed that the UCaaS market, which is already worth $5.68 billion, is expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate of 23.4 percent by 2022. With that amount of progress, the need for easy-to-use tools for employees rises. The implementation of UC solutions in more and more companies will require many employees to learn how to use the technology in order to communicate with clients and their peers. Simplified tools allow for workers to easily integrate the system into their everyday affairs.

Making staff members part of the decision-making process allows them to feel included while warming them up to a new system. A survey in TechTarget reported that 18 percent of employees are more likely to feel like new technology will increase efficiency if they are consulted while 23 percent are more likely to be happier at their jobs. Since they are the ones who will be using UC solutions, it's important to ensure that they'll be comfortable with the software.

With the continued shift to UC solutions, the new technology has to be geared toward the user. By adding and simplifying communication and collaboration tools, employees will more easily be able to work with one another to increase the productivity of the business.

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