The Time is Now

The Time is Now

There is more urgency than ever to make your move to cloud communications

This chapter examines ROI factors and business benefits of moving to cloud communications on a single platform. It is the summer of 2020. Leaders must act boldly to invest in these services that can keep their businesses open in normal times and in crises like we are in today. Jobs and businesses are at stake. The time is now to make that transformation.

With few exceptions, on-premises business telephony is headed to the island of cassette tapes, compact-disc players, VCRs, and flip phones. Gartner Research has predicted that “by 2022, four cloud-based UCaaS seat licenses will be sold for every premises-based UC license, driven by an expanding list of cloud communications capabilities in UCaaS solutions. (Source: Top 3 Considerations When Moving From Premises-Based Unified Communications to Cloud-Based UCaaS, 4/3/2020)” That is a quadruple number of licenses for cloud, and the disparity will only grow. This does not mean certain hardware such as handsets cannot be reused. It just means that all infrastructure innovation is happening in the cloud.

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Cloud services pay for themselves through elimination and consolidation.

If you say you have no budget to add cloud communications— like telephony, video conferencing, or chat— ask yourself what you could do with extra funds from reducing reliance on other services. What if you could dramatically cut on-premises maintenance costs and reduce global phone bills, all while consolidating licensing agreements? Many of 8×8’s customers start realizing positive ROI during their first year of implementation. We see an average of a 30% drop in total cost of ownership over three years compared to premises-based, siloed legacy solutions.

If this latest transformation caught you unprepared, another key advantage of cloud-based communications is that new innovations and updates are delivered automatically so you’ll be ready for future challenges and opportunities. And thanks to automated and remote support and administration, no more 4-hour scheduling windows waiting for a field technician.

As you transform more aspects of your business, a unified communications platform positions you to take advantage of the next big thing: embedding communications channels directly into your enterprise applications. We’ll learn more about Communications Platform as a Service in subsequent chapters, along with potential for even more ROI thanks to personalized customer interactions.

We would argue that consolidating all business communications—phone, video, fax, SMS, and contact center—to a single vendor can generate the highest, fastest ROI. Cloud communications have evolved to offer an all-in-one platform enabling employees to operate from anywhere, increasing potential productivity, innovation and revenue.

Calculating ROI.

Because ROI is such an important part of discussions about whether and how to migrate to a cloud communications solution, we have created the 8×8 ROI Calculator to give you confidence about what you can save and from where. This tool is a companion to our VoIP Speed Test service that tells you how fast your Internet connection is to the nearest 8×8 server. Having employees use this service can help you plan your networking requirements.

>Using the Web-based tool, you enter profile information like the number of main and branch offices plus any contact centers. After you plug in information about your current phone and online collaboration costs, the tool generates a report that estimates your potential monthly and annual cost savings.

Why does single-platform cloud communications beat individual cloud apps?

This is a common early question when beginning to evaluate vendors. Naturally, we believe a unified platform offers customers more flexibility, cost savings, innovation and other benefits over the a-la-carte approach.

While people often say a unified cloud platform offers the benefits of a single vendor, what does that really mean? In reality, those benefits go far beyond volume discounts, licensing consolidation, and streamlined tech support.

Things like:

  • Capturing analytics across multiple apps like video conferencing, contact center and voice to gain better insights that can improve operations and performance
  • Transitioning seamlessly between multiple channels — for instance, when users are in a voice call and want to switch to a video meeting, to perhaps share a screen, they can do so in a click
  • Making a new world of data available across apps, facilitating AI/machine learning
  • Giving users a unified mobile communications app covering voice, video conferencing, chat, SMS, and fax

The 8×8 Open Communication Platform was designed to extend the value of our core communications and collaboration tools through services like our new direct routing solution for Microsoft Teams. It follows a raft of other app integrations like Salesforce, ServiceNow and Office 365. The Open Communications Platform is a clear path to realize the full potential of cloud communications.

“Our research finds significant ROI, on the order of double digits in many cases, across the spectrum of benefits in offering workers a more integrated communications experience. The key is in ensuring that as many communications channels are integrated as native, first-class citizens in a primary hub or in existing communications/meeting solutions.”

Dion Hinchcliffe
VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research

Going beyond cost and time savings.

Each organization has its own transformation business objectives. Where we see cloud platforms helping customers the most is with speed and scale. Speed is important because you need to adapt quickly to changing conditions. How quickly can you onboard new employees, open new offices or initiate a remote work program when needed? Beyond hard dollar savings, these are important considerations when evaluating cloud communications.

The cloud was made for scaling benefits regionally and globally—even if most of the administration is based out of headquarters. Combining speed with scale leads to:

  • Setting up new offices faster
  • Reducing product time-to-market
  • Improving employee collaboration by breaking down communications and data silos
  • Simpler user administration
  • Making and receiving lower latency, higher quality calls
  • Paying less money for international calling
  • Integrating quickly with business apps and CRM tools
  • Safeguarding business communications
  • Giving employees the flexibility to work from anywhere
  • Reducing office space as more staff opt to work remotely

Your organization can accrue these benefits for office employees and contact center workers. Combining cloud-based unified communications with contact center solutions enables even more benefits and ROI opportunities. To get a deeper view of these benefits, check out our eBook, The ROI of Uniting Unified Communications and Contact Center.

Especially now, ROI goes beyond saving money. It is about keeping your business open and continuing to innovate, providing great customer service and generating revenue as much as it is about saving money.

Download the Operate From Anywhere eBook.

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View other chapters from our Operate From Anywhere eBook

View other chapters from our Operate From Anywhere eBook

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