So your company has invested in Unified Communications and collaboration technologies like Office 365 or Skype for Business in hopes of achieving added functionality and flexibility. But as expectations for improved efficiency, reduced costs and better customer service rise, so does pressure on the IT team to ensure reliable and consistent application performance.
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In this blog we will discuss 5 facts every IT team should know in order to deliver an exceptional Quality of Experience (QoE) and achieve true ROI of their UC deployment.
1. Most Companies Fail to Achieve UC ROI Objectives – But You Don’t Have To
In a recent survey, we discovered that 60% of IT professionals attribute Quality of Experience issues as the main factor impacting ROI of their UC deployment. The whole point of Unified Communications is to help employees communicate and collaborate across the enterprise in hopes of boosting productivity and driving business success. But as I’m sure you can relate, when the tool you’re using to make your job easier, ends up making your job more difficult, it’s easy to throw it to the wayside.
Dropped calls, choppy audio, that annoying little echo during a videoconference, are all contributing factors that impede employee adoption. In fact, 1 in 4 end users will not use their UC platform because of QoE. And as any organization will tell you, employee adoption is essential to realizing ROI for any UC deployment. Why invest thousands of dollars in a tool if no one is able to use it successfully?
2. Underlying Network Issues Cause the Majority of QoE Problems
While it would be easier to blame quality of experience issues on user error, the reality is, the majority of QoE problems are due to an inadequate or misconfigured network infrastructure. Network Quality of Service factors like bandwidth, jitter, packet loss and latency have a direct bearing on VoIP and video performance.
Seventy three percent of network teams are responsible for troubleshooting these UC issues. Delivering a high quality of experience is the new driving force for network managers. However, delivering a high quality of experience is both more difficult and more expensive to deliver as a result of network complexity, bandwidth cost and content expansion. The only solution is to proactively monitor and manage the issues that compromise UC performance.
3. You Don’t Need a Bandwidth Upgrade to Guarantee Service
Since real-time UC applications require significant network resources to perform, when QoE issues arise the traditional reaction has been to throw more bandwidth at the problem. But the fact of the matter is that bandwidth upgrades are not only costly, they’re unnecessary.
What you need is to invest in a solution that will allow you to set dynamic policies that control how bandwidth is allocated to each user or application at any given time. This way voice, video and collaboration applications can be prioritized, and less important application traffic can be minimized or throttled completely.
4. A Comprehensive Network View Can Prevent User Complaints
A picture is worth a 1000 words and so is real-time monitoring of all your network activity. Sixty eight percent of IT professionals have indicated that monitoring and alerts on the health of their network would be the most valuable capability for managing QoE. For optimal performance of all your voice, video and UC collaboration tools, you need insight into how these applications are performing and which applications they’re competing with for network resources.
Is Johnny’s incessant video streaming preventing the CEO from successfully hosting a web conference? It’s time to stop guessing. With proactive monitoring of usage patterns and user experience, you can pinpoint, respond and fix issues quickly – and often before most end users notice.
5. UC Doesn’t Have to Impact Performance of Other Applications
Yes, your Unified Communications apps must run smoothly at all times, but it shouldn’t be at the expense of other business critical applications. With the right solution, you can create policies that provide sufficient bandwidth for the day’s web conference and still gives employees reliable access to other business critical applications. Or you can strategically time when your employees can use file-sharing applications like SharePoint and reschedule data transfers outside of business hours. Throttling bandwidth-hungry UC when required will guarantee your other essential applications are available and perform well across the enterprise.
See how Exinda can help you ensure a successful UC deployment in our next live technical demo! Register today.