Category

Pick a topic

While new UCaaS capabilities abound, security and reliability should guide decisions

Ring Central Blog

Share

URL copied
3 min read

Cloud communications decision makers are often drawn in by the bells and whistles of the latest innovations. It can sometimes be difficult to evaluate what are likely the most critical factors in the provider selection process, specifically a provider’s historical service performance and security posture.

Approximately half of businesses currently using UCaaS in Frost & Sullivan’s 2018 US survey are considering replacing their providers, driven by a desire to improve security (45% of respondents), lower cost per seat (44% of respondents), and increase reliability (42% of respondents).

That IT/telecom decision makers highly value service reliability and security isn’t entirely surprising. Downtime from service failures can have severe consequences, including lost business opportunities and significant operational losses from decreased productivity and output. As we’ve seen with high-profile companies such as Equifax, security breaches can bring devastating consequences for brand and reputation, with potentially catastrophic long-term implications for customer churn, revenue, and competitive advantage.

Unfortunately, despite significant advancements in cloud communications technologies and service provider efforts to deliver an excellent customer experience, not all UCaaS solutions are at the same operational level. Providers and solutions differ in terms of service level agreements (SLAs), architectural design, data center management, security policies and practices, and customer service and support, which become critical when incidents take place or issues arise.

Many UCaaS providers are still struggling to consistently deliver the coveted 99.999% service availability. To make matters worse, the effects of an outage can persist long past restoring service. Customers affected by service outages also sometimes report poor service provider follow-up and remediation after the incident. Furthermore, not all providers can guarantee security all the way to the end-user devices.

Customer-focused UCaaS providers are placing an ever-stronger emphasis on improving service reliability and security to deliver a superior customer experience. Their efforts include: geo-redundancy, data center updates, network architecture improvements, fast auto failover, advanced quality monitoring tools, SD-WAN support, additional regulatory compliance certifications (e.g., HIPAA), and more robust security controls.

Best practices for UCaaS deployment success

To future-proof their UCaaS deployments and ensure a higher return on investment, businesses must perform robust due diligence prior to selecting their UCaaS provider. Key steps in that process must include the following:

Conclusion

Businesses must exercise caution when selecting a UCaaS provider. There is an old tailor’s saying: “Measure twice, cut once,” which can provide a good guiding principle for businesses in pursuit of a long-term partner. More specifically, decision makers evaluating solutions should focus on the most essential criteria, such as security and reliability, and avoid being distracted by the fancy features that many providers like to highlight in their marketing campaigns. Due diligence and a holistic assessment of the UCaaS solution and provider capabilities are critical to ensure long-term success.

Elka Popova is the Vice President and Senior Fellow, Digital Transformation at Frost & Sullivan.

Originally published Dec 13, 2018, updated Oct 19, 2020

Up next

Communication and collaboration

Breaking Down the Advantages of VoIP for SMBs

VoIP is undoubtedly one of the most groundbreaking technologies of the last 25 years. VoIP, voice over internet protocol, enables reliable, high-quality phone service anywhere you have internet access. It eliminates the need to use landlines for real-time conversations. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the advantages of VoIP ...

Share

URL copied

Related content

Communication and collaboration

5 Top Trends for Small Business Communications in 2018

Security

Cloud security and mobility: how safe are you in the cloud?

Communication and collaboration

Five Video Meeting Practices to Fuel Collaboration Among Remote Teams

Before you go...
Get our very best content for free and start working better from anywhere
You’re in! Thanks for signing up. Keep an eye out for our emails in your inbox.
Get the Remote Work Playbook
Everything you need to know in one place
Get the 2021 State of Hybrid Work Report
Learn how businesses are managing a partially remote workforce
You’re in! Thanks for signing up. Enjoy your copy of the Remote Work Playbook.