Unified Communications can hypercharge the enterprise workforce

Look for 4 key attributes when considering a UC environment

Distributed offices, mobile workforces, and work-from-home policies are changing how employees collaborate and accomplish their goals. Chat, email, file sharing, and other collaboration facilities provide adequate channels to work together. However, connecting those channels and other utilities into a Unified Communications (UC) environment creates a product that is greater than its individual parts.

Putting advanced tools in the hands of your distributed workforce can increase productivity and improve the work experience across the board. Just be sure to keep these four key attributes in mind as you consider your implementation:

1. Flexible environments

UC environments are comprised of multiple communications vehicles including voice, chat, screen sharing, shared editing, and video. It’s important that participants can easily switch between modes at will, and even participate in multiple types of communication as mandated by their needs and those of other participants.

2. Shared mental space

Distributed workforces by definition work apart from one another. While there are benefits to such arrangements, they can lead to lack of team spirit and an absence of common projects and goals. UC, when properly deployed, can help bring people together by providing seamless connectivity. Video chats mimic an office space where fellow staff are easily available. Some companies are experimenting with “always-on” teleconferencing that brings shared experiences to remote employees. As Travis Beck, an engineer at Shutterstock, explained in an article published on Inc.com,”Having it on all day creates a community. We can joke around, but most importantly we’re all on the same page in one shared space and culture.”

3. Collaborative technology

Working at a desk in the same office may allow staff to interact, but it doesn’t simplify the editing process when only one person can work on a project at a time. Screen sharing and simultaneous document editing deliver different but important ways to elevate the collaborative experience beyond simply sitting alongside another worker. The addition of video and voice collaboration to live editing should become part of the UC implementation.

4. Documented discussions

Recording of important conversations is a good way to document meetings, whether they are planned or impromptu, and whether they are between two people or in a group setting. UC platforms typically include the option to record all types of interactions from simple voice to video conferences and screen sharing presentations. Team members who are not able to attend an event can be provided the option to access and replay the meeting in its entirety or to skip to important sections for quick reference. In addition, transcription services can be granted access to recordings to produce written transcripts for a variety of purposes.

UC environments can change the way organizations work together and bring globally distributed workforces together to accomplish complex tasks on tight deadlines. Find out how Unified Communications solutions from AT&T can help you meet these goals.

Scott Koegler Writer Sponsored Post About Scott

Scott Koegler is a technology journalist with a specialization on the intersection of business and technology. All opinions are his own. AT&T has sponsored this blog post.