Over the past couple of years the growth of Skype for Business, in terms of both revenue and its user base has been a wild success for Microsoft. In fact, Skype for Business eclipsed $2 billion in sales in 2015 and has seen growth in its enterprise and small business adoption with a 42% and 33% increase since last year, respectively.

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Despite all of its success, Skype for Business comes with its own set of challenges. Forgoing traditional telecommunications, users are increasingly reliant on a high level of call quality performance and an overall top-notch user experience. Things like choppy audio, connection issues and delayed audio are not only frustrating, but can trigger lower satisfaction levels and potentially depress user adoption. In fact, 50% of IT professionals report not being able to fully resolve Quality of Experience issues resulting in a 60% lower employee adoption rate. And for companies that use Skype for Business to operate valuable pieces of the business like sales or call centers, even minor dips in performance can impact the business’s ROI.

For more cool Skype for Business stats, click here.

3 Steps for Awesome Skype for Business Performance

To get the most out of your Skype for Business investment, you need to guarantee reliable and consistent Skype for Business performance. This requires that you not only assess your environment prior to deployment, but you have continuous visibility into your network and Skype for Business to ensure the appropriate amount of resources are available to the app for optimal performance.

1. Assessment
Microsoft provides specific guidelines for bandwidth requirements needed for a successful deployment of its Skype for Business product. While this information is valuable, it doesn’t give network managers the full picture of their environment. What you need is a comprehensive network assessment to not only ensure there is enough bandwidth for a deployment, but also a complete view of your organization’s network traffic and application usage to pinpoint problem areas that might affect Skype for Business – both in the sanctioned form with business critical applications and unsanctioned for those that traverse the network as shadow IT.

2. Monitoring
The secret to top level performance is an ongoing view into the network. With how rapidly traffic patterns change and applications enter the network, a configuration you create today may not be valid tomorrow. What you need is a comprehensive view of your network activity at any given time. This allows you to know when Skype for Business performance is impacted and identify any unsanctioned devices, applications and users that may be draining your network resources.

3. Control
The most important step for a successful Skype for Business deployment is control. Knowing the requirements and understanding your network traffic is vital, but only useful if you can then limit the non-critical traffic and guarantee resources for your indispensable apps like Skype for Business. You need to guarantee the bandwidth and prioritization for Skype for Business to perform flawlessly as well as the ability to set limits on non-essential use of network resources. In short – you need to make sure that Skype for Business can always perform and not be impacted by the any noise on the network.

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