5 Things To Consider When Switching Your Cloud Communications Provider

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Many companies adopted UCaaS during the pandemic and were forced to make quick decisions about providers. Now, several years down the line, some of these companies are finding that the systems they adopted in haste, are not quite hitting the mark. Perhaps their vendor is performing poorly when it comes to uptime, or perhaps their UCaaS doesn’t have the latest AI features or CCaaS leadership to make employees’ jobs easier all while improving customer experience.

If your company is in this situation, don’t worry. Switching your UCaaS (or CCaaS) provider is a realistic option and there are plenty of great solutions out there. When you’re comparing new vendors, here are five aspects to consider.

1. Security and privacy 

More of us are relying on video conferencing to conduct confidential and sensitive meetings – staff appraisals, financial reviews, legal case reviews, and so on. It’s critical that these meetings remain secure and private, so when you’re evaluating UCaaS vendors, carefully consider the security options they provide.

End-to-end encryption (E2EE) is the latest evolution in security for online communications. With E2EE, the endpoints (sender and receiver) establish encryption keys without the involvement of any intermediaries. The endpoints can then use these keys to encrypt (and decrypt) data, as seen in this diagram:

What is end-to-end encryption

When E2EE is switched on, no unauthorised third party can access communication content, including the UC provider. E2EE offers both confidentiality (protection against eavesdropping) – because only participants can decrypt the communications – and integrity (protection against modification), because your communications won’t decrypt properly if someone has tried to modify or tamper with them.

The only downside of E2EE is that the UC provider won’t be able to offer enhanced features such as recordings, AI transcripts, whiteboards and more. For meetings where these features are essential, and confidentiality is not such an issue, traditional point-to-point (P2P) encryption is probably a better choice. Find out more about E2EE and P2P in this blog article.

E2EE is already an option in RingEX for video meetings, and will soon be an option for phone and messages too.

2. Innovation

There have been rapid advances in AI in recent years and some UCaaS providers have been capitalising on these, embedding them into their technology’s DNA. These automation features can improve productivity, enable more flexible working, and make meetings more accessible.

Take conversational AI. Automatically generated summaries and recording highlights, live transcriptions and closed captioning (in multiple languages): all these features enable users to catch up on missed meetings or review discussions, actions and decisions later on. They also really help non-native speakers or people with hearing difficulties.

RingCentral has been at the forefront of these innovations and has recently extended its conversational AI features.

AI call summaries-817

3. Reliability  

It’s all very well having a UCaaS with the latest innovations, but what about its reliability? In a world which increasingly demands companies to be ‘always on’, the availability of our communications is a critical factor.

When looking for a new provider, make sure you scrutinise their Service Level Agreement (SLA), especially their uptime guarantee. Small differences can have huge consequences here. For instance, a 99.9% uptime guarantee sounds great, but this actually equates to an expected downtime of more than 43 minutes a month (or >10 minutes a week.) That’s quite a lot of lost time!

Compare this with the 99.999% uptime guarantee that RingCentral offers. This equates to just over 26 seconds of downtime a month (6.05 seconds a week). Imagine the positive difference this would make to customer trust, staff productivity and frustration levels. As with most things, the devil is in the detail when it comes to promises about reliability.

4. Integrations

Does the UCaaS provider you’re considering have a fully integrated solution, with everything in one place? That’s a key question to ask. When all your communication tools are in one system (video, messages, phone) you can switch between them effortlessly – receive a call on your desktop and then flip it quickly to your mobile, for instance. This avoids the ‘app overload’ problem that reduces employee productivity and effectiveness.

The best systems also allow you to integrate business enterprise apps (like Microsoft 365, Salesforce and Google Workspace) for even greater workflow efficiency.

RingCentral integrates with hundreds of popular business apps, and as a result, our customers’ report a 32% increase in employee productivity.

5. Analytics

Getting insights from all your communication apps (including video, phone and webinar) can be a gamechanger. It enables you to make data-driven decisions, spot issues early, and gives your IT team the knowledge they need to fix issues proactively.

But many UCaaS platforms fall short when it comes to analytics. Some providers don’t retain enough history, while others don’t have enough flexibility to get meaningful insights, or require complex integrations with third party tools.

Always consider analytics features when you’re evaluating vendors, and look for important capabilities such as real-time and historical insights, customisable interfaces, data-driven alerts, and reporting tools that cater for every department.

RingCentral recently ranked #1 for analytics in a report by an independent agency, the Tolly Group. We scored particularly highly for our real-time, extensive quality-of-service (QoS) monitoring, simple yet powerful interface, and flexibility.

Is it time to switch providers?

So, how well is your current vendor doing in these five key areas? If you feel like they’re lagging behind, maybe it’s time to look for a new provider. By keeping all these factors in mind when you’re drawing up your shortlist, you will be well on your way to finding a best-in-class UCaaS and CCaaS solution.

Take a closer look at our unified communications solution, RingCentral EX, and consider putting us on your shortlist.

Originally published Apr 08, 2024


Samantha is RingCentral’s Content Manager for EMEA Marketing. Before joining the business, she worked in content and public relations roles. She has worked with companies in ed tech, marketing and advertising, connected home, telecoms and publishing.

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