Choosing the Right Unified Communications as a Service Platform: Top 10 Features to Consider

Unified communications and networking concept illustration showing silhouettes of people against a blue background with circles connected with lines over them. After relying on us for IT network management and strategic consulting services for a couple of years, one of our clients decided it was time to make some big changes, including replacing their phone system. Our team determined it would be advantageous for them to migrate from an on-prem phone system to a Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) platform.

Drawing on our extensive partner network and their experience working with various UCaaS solutions, our trusted technology advisors helped the client compare and review their options. After they selected a cloud phone system from Vonage, our team handled the migration in June 2019.

The client’s new highly accessible phone system turned out to be a huge advantage when COVID-19 led everyone to switch to working from home. In addition to easily accommodating remote workers, it increased efficiency and ensured the organization would never need to invest time or money in phone system upgrades again.

The Pandemic and the Growing Popularity of UCaaS

That client is one of many businesses that have implemented a UCaaS solution for greater productivity, flexibility and scalability, as well as cost containment. Particularly in today’s world of widespread working from home, cloud-based UC platforms have become a no-brainer for companies across all industries.

In 2020, the Unified Communication & Collaboration market saw revenue growth of 24.9 percent to $47.2 billion, as stated in the article “Worldwide Unified Communications & Collaboration (UC&C) Market Soars in 2020, According to IDC.”

The article notes that the way we do business “changed dramatically in 2020 due to COVID-19, driving companies of all sizes to consider and adopt scalable, flexible, cloud-based digital technology solutions (e.g., Unified Communications as a Service or UCaaS) as part of their overall integrated UC&C solution.”

10 Things to Look for in a Cloud Phone System

If you’re considering replacing your on-prem phone system with UCaaS or swapping your current cloud phone system for a new one, it’s important to carefully consider your options and find a solution capable of meeting all of your company’s specific requirements. Here are some of the key aspects our advisors look at when identifying the best product for a client.

1. Security features: Cyberattacks are still a significant threat to all kinds of businesses, so be sure to review each UCaaS supplier’s data security capabilities.

2. Compliance: If your company needs to follow industry-specific regulations such as HIPAA, be sure to check that the UCaaS platform you choose is compliant as well.

3. Compatible hardware: If you already have phone system hardware (e.g., headsets) that you’d like to utilize with the new system, you’ll need to select a UCaaS solution that works with your pre-existing equipment.

4. Contact center solutions from the supplier: If you’re also in need of a Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS) solution, it’s ideal if your UCaaS provider offers that type of product as well for easy integration. If you already have a contact center solution in place, you’ll want to find a UC platform that meshes with it or has a direct connection to it in their data center to avoid additional fees.

5. CRM/ERP/ticketing app integration: Make sure that your cloud phone system can maximize efficiency by pulling in data from your other business apps.

6. Productivity app integrations: This is important to assess if you rely on Google Workspace, Microsoft 365, or any other productivity applications.

7. On-site implementation and training services: Does the supplier offer these, and do they charge extra for them?

8. Their data center footprint compared to your location: Evaluating this factor is crucial to ensure optimal call flow and avoid issues like latency, jitter and dropped calls.

9. SIP trunking: Consider whether the provider in question offers SIP trunking services for on-prem PBXs.

10. The platform it’s built on: What underlying technology serves as the foundation for this UCaaS solution?

Streamline Shopping for a UCaaS Platform With Our Trusted Advisor Services

At the end of the day, before investing in a UCaaS solution, it’s vital to ensure you select a product that’s compatible with your company’s needs and will help you achieve your organizational goals. However, thoroughly evaluating cloud phone system offerings from all of the leading suppliers in the market can be incredibly time-consuming and labor-intensive. That’s where our advisors come in.

We have plenty of experience assisting companies shopping for the best cloud phone system and can save you money and simplify the process for you by vetting your options, producing side-by-side comparison matrices, setting up demos, negotiating contracts and more. Additionally, our price parity guarantee means that working with us won’t cost you more than going directly to the UCaaS supplier.

Take the first step toward a more accessible and cost-effective phone system today by calling 877-599-3999 or emailing

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