This is a guestpost by Sarah Brown, Director of Sales and Marketing at Momentum Telecom.
Our team has heard me say this at least a dozen times, work is no longer a destination – it’s an activity. In the world we live in today, working outside of the office is a reality for many. The proliferation of new communications technology and cloud-based solutions have allowed for this emergence of a truly virtual workplace. This isn’t necessarily news to most but the truth is, these technologies have not only made it possible for all employees to connect, collaborate and access information regardless of location, but they have also created benefits for businesses to have remote employees.
Some numbers to consider:
• In a study done by the Telework Research Network, it was discovered that 45% of the U.S. workforce hold jobs that could be executed from home on a part-time or full-time basis.
• An infographic from a 2012 Wrike survey on work habits said that 8 out of every 10 respondents currently spend at least part of the day working from home.
• The Wrike survey results show productivity increases by 29%, most people attributing that to being able to steer clear of office politics and better focus on work.
Voice-only phones are a thing of the past. Streamlined operations and a connected mobile workforce are the business pillars of the future. Widespread smartphone adoption over the past few years has led to an explosion of online self-service and mobile apps, which has transformed the work landscape. Businesses today need the flexibility to access information from any location and the freedom to communicate from any device. Tools like unified communications are optimizing the business process and shifting communications capabilities to the cloud. Unified communications is a one-stop platform that provides faster, flexible, more personalized access to information that delivers a collaboration experience from any device – mobile phone, tablet, laptop, desktop or desk phone.
The market for Unified Communications is expected to grow to $2.3 billion by 2016, according to ABI Research. With that growth, comes exciting advancements that allow greater flexibility and productivity for businesses. As you set new technology budgets for the year ahead, consider investing in UC-as-a-service so you don’t get left behind. Companies can already start to anticipate the following trends happening in 2013:
• Greater accessibility and ease of use will produce a seamless transition between any medium of communication.
• BYOD (Bring your own device) adoption will give employees their choice of device for work, giving way to the traditional desk phone.
• Vertical integration - UC software manufacturers will open APIs for vertical integration adoption, which will result in the production of more relevant business applications.
UC as a service offers a number of benefits for businesses. Communications solutions will need to remain a step ahead of the rapid pace of innovation in our industry and continually offer vetted features of the future; a platform that assures ongoing success and satisfaction for “doing business from anywhere”.
To read more about how unified communications is enabling the virtual workforce, checkout some of Sarah’s blog posts where she shares the latest and greatest tech trends.