Growing businesses are reading the economic signs — and they like what they see. Indeed, optimism among middle market executives is at its highest level in eight years, according to the JP Morgan Chase 2018 Business Leaders Outlook Survey.
“Business optimism translates to business activity, which is why we’re seeing increased expectations across the board. For businesses that can hire and retain talent in today’s tight labor market, there are growth opportunities to capitalize on,” says Jim Glassman, Head Economist, Commercial Banking at JP Morgan Chase.
To fully take advantage of such opportunities, growing businesses need their IT teams focused on new business initiatives. Too often, though, these resources are stretched thin. Not only do they have to support the influx of new employees, but they’re usually tasked with the critical responsibility of supporting business initiatives. The pressure of these competing demands can derail the organization’s plans for growth.
One way to alleviate the challenge is to deploy unified communications as a service (UCaaS). For IT teams, its most compelling benefit is that the vendor handles day-to-day maintenance and support. Such a shift can be monumental. IT spends more time focused on business initiatives — and less on adding new employees to the platform or managing software updates. Consequently, the company is more agile.
Making it possible for businesses to jump on emerging opportunities is just one crucial competitive advantage unified communications offers. Another is access to state-of-the-art communications features. Companies look and act bigger than they are when they deploy collaboration, mobility and data tools. UC makes next-gen apps available to IT teams, who then provide employees with new features and collaboration tools as they become available. Since it doesn’t need to build these applications themselves, the tech team has more time to spend on initiatives that support growth.
These examples only scratch the surface. Here are a few additional ways growing companies can adapt to changing business conditions with UC.
Close the distance. Today’s workforce, especially at growing businesses, is frequently on the move. But if employees can’t reach key colleagues and subject matter experts in their moment of need, there’s a risk they’ll miss important opportunities. Take, for example, a car salesperson. He may be on the premises, but often he’s hard to find, as he moves from the showroom to the back lot to the manager’s office. With UC, however, the office staff can immediately reach him anywhere through a dedicated mobile app. In turn, he can click to call the sales manager and secure a discount for interested buyers. He closes deals faster and revenues rise.
Solve problems fast. In field services, it’s common for technicians to run into issues they can’t resolve on their own. With real-time collaboration features, they can locate a subject matter expert back in the office and start a video or audio conference with a tap, right from the customer location. Together, the tech and SME can troubleshoot the problem and resolve it on the first call.
Foster teamwork. It takes a team to keep major deals afloat and customers happy. Whether working on a significant proposal or troubleshooting an issue, collaborators need an efficient way to communicate. Group notifications and web chat ensure everyone is on the same page with little effort.
Take the office everywhere. The distributed workforce is fast becoming the norm for growing businesses. Even while on the road or working remotely, employees expect to have comprehensive access to everything in the office — people, files, even video conferencing. With cloud apps, IT can provide these capabilities in a flash, without undergoing a major technical effort.
The most attractive part about each of these capabilities? UC doesn’t require the full-time attention of your IT staff. Instead, they spend their time on business initiatives, not communications, allowing your organization to seize the moment and continue growing.