Steps to Success with UC
Based on the UC Strategy you have developed, or which we have developed with you, there are some clear steps to success.
1. Decide on How You Want to Deploy UC
We see two major ways to deploy UC:
1. Boost personal productivity by helping individual users manage their communications
This approach focuses on the individual user by using UC to provide easy access to the tools most appropriate to their job or the task at hand. Communications become simpler and more efficient with functions such as presence indication and mobile access to information.
2. Optimize business processes by integrating new communications functions into business processes
This approach streamlines workflows by finding and eliminating the communications bottlenecks and inefficiencies that impact business processes. For example, bottlenecks occur when customers cannot reach their desired contact and go into a voice mail or email queue, or when a business process cannot proceed because a single person is unavailable to provide information or approval.
Application software can now automatically invoke UC capabilities to streamline business processes. For example, if an expert is needed to review a document, the software can automatically find someone who is available and has the appropriate credentials. This eliminates the back-and-forth messaging and multiple follow-up calls that can pile up and halt the business process or workflow.
UC solutions will deliver significant business improvements if they are appropriately designed and effectively implemented. UniComm clients have accelerated revenues, lowered carrying costs, reduced staffing requirements, and improved customer satisfaction. Some have realized end-to-end process time reductions of 30% or more.
While both UC deployment options can yield benefits, some of our ROI studies suggest that the benefits of using UC to optimize business processes can be up to ten times greater than the benefits of using UC for personal productivity alone.
It can be effective to begin implementing UC by introducing the new communications tools as personal productivity boosters. That approach builds understanding of the power of these new tools and gets people involved. But an enterprise gets the full value of UC by taking the next step and using UC technologies to optimize business processes. By analyzing business processes and finding the communications bottlenecks, you can see the opportunities and benefits for UC applications. Then you can prioritize the applications. By implementing the applications on a phased schedule, acceptance builds gradually, and you can use the payback from one implementation phase to fund the next.
2. Gather Information and Get Educated
- Visit UCStrategies.com, the leading UC Industry forum.
- Use the links on our Resources page to learn about UC applications, read white papers and blogs, and hear podcasts about UC.
- Follow the links on our Resources page to other UC websites and UC industry events.
- Visit the vendor sites and look for UC case studies.
- For UC education that is more customized to your specific situation, contact UniComm Consulting.
3. Assess UC Opportunities for Your Enterprise
Identify the major “user profiles” across your business processes. A “user profile” is a grouping of technology users according to their roles in the enterprise value chain. Almost all enterprises can be represented by 5 to 7 user profiles. Examples are insurance underwriters, field service organizations, sales professionals, and professional services teams.
Review the communications-intensive business processes for each user profile as they perform their roles in your organization and find the communications “hot spots” – those points in a process where communication inefficiencies create bottlenecks.
Identify the UC technology components that will remove or reduce those communication hot spots. Each user profile will most likely have different component requirements, and these will shape the optimal solution designs for your organization. For some user profiles, just a few enhancements are required. For others, a significant change may be indicated.
Prepare a preliminary UC business case and roadmap, which will be updated as technology is selected and vendors provide quotes. The business case is based on the efficiencies that can be created in each process. The roadmap is based on the logical sequencing of the investments based on strategic importance, ease of implementation, technology maturity, and other factors.
If you need assistance with these steps, consider inviting UniComm Consulting to meet with your stakeholders, key players, and / or line of business managers
4. Prepare a UC Business Case and Action Plan
- Convert the UC opportunities into specific technology requirements.
- Prepare an RFP, if needed, using the UniComm Consulting UC RFP Templates.
- Issue an RFP or RFQ and assess the responses for feasibility, cost, and timing.
- Finalize your UC Business Case, including an ROI analysis.
- For expert professional assistance with these steps, you can contact UniComm Consulting.
5. Execute Your UC Plan
- Follow your company’s standard implementation methods.
- Test, run and oversee a pilot for your new UC applications.
- Use feedback from the pilot test to tune the solution.
- Prepare the full launch plan with a change management component.
We welcome your request for a no-charge consultation to learn how UniComm Consulting can assist you with these steps and help you optimize your business processes with Unified Communications. To contact us, click here.