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Navigating the Paradigm Shift from Unified Communications to Unified Interactions

by Curtis Peterson, Vice President of Operations at RingCentral

Just a decade ago, all business communications were location based, making it impossible to carry on multiple conversations simultaneously. But today’s youngest workforce, unaware of anything but instant communication on the go, combined with unlimited bandwidth streaming technology, has initiated a perpetual shift in communication. Communication in the workplace is no longer static and formal—it is dynamic and dependent on interaction.

The evolution from unified communications to “unified interactions” has not happened overnight. A few key factors have been slowly driving this paradigm shift in the structure of the workforce. An increase in mobility, changes in the way workers communicate and an advance in the tools that support communication have brought us to where we are today. It is time to strategize using a few key advancements:

Bring Your Own Device

Unless you’re living under a rock, you are by now familiar with BYOD and understand the role it can play in enabling your mobile workforce. However, the businesses jumping on the BYOD bandwagon might be making a critical mistake. Most businesses that are “BYOD friendly” still consider the device a company asset and require the installation of a mobile device management system. Once employees are convinced to use what is actually now businesses equipment, it changes the nature of BYOD and can lead to bigger challenges down the road in terms of trust and privacy. This BYOD structure can backfire when employees rebel against it and begin using their own devices against company policy, forgoing the required security restraints. Companies need to offer assurances in their device policies that their Mobile Device Management strategies will not violate the personal privacy of the end user.

SMS in the workplace

Surveys show that 67% of professionals are texting for business. The problem with SMS in the workplace is that most businesses lack a tool to track this communication thread. Texts quickly become disconnected from other components of unified communication strategy, like phone and video calls. Turning to network-based or cloud-based solutions that index the interaction across multiple mediums allow companies to look at the conversation like an interaction thread instead of a bunch of disconnected conversations.

Removing the Silos from Your Platform

Decades ago, you could get away with purchasing source code and modifying it to fit your own unified communications platform and code. In order to integrate new applications that support a modern workforce, you must make sure the platforms you are choosing are open and standards-based so you can tie multiple systems together. Unified Communications Federation enables the merge of multiple communication platforms to achieve a collaborative workplace that lets employees work when they want, how they want.

The evolution of communication requires shifts away from traditional communication methods. Conversations across all mediums should be apart of the same interaction. If businesses remain resilient to unified communications changes, they will become increasingly difficult to support in today’s modern workforce. The current communication world requires more than utilizing several unified communication mediums. It is time to adopt telecommunication systems that support interaction and are up-to-date with the latest technology.

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