The Seamless Enterprise

Comprehensive news and discussion of enterprise communications and converged network solutions.

Hero of the UC Revolution?

on September 11, 2012 by Editor

Wouldn’t we all like to be a hero? All that admiration and acclaim, the satisfaction of knowing we really accomplished something bold and daring. Not to mention what a great resume enhancer heroism can be.

While we’re dreaming, why not just make the leap to superhero? We all have a favorite superhero (I’ve always been partial to capes), and just imagine what we could accomplish in our work lives with superpowers. Cooling the data center with your breath could be a huge energy saver, for instance, and probably would at least earn you Employee of the Month honors and a reserved parking space.

But coming back to reality, heroism in the workplace is generally pretty hard to come by. That’s why the headline on a Webtorials article caught our attention. The title: How to be a Hero When You Roll Out UC.

Besides the catchiest headline we’ve seen in a while, this article by Michael Finneran has some useful insight on what it takes to deploy Unified Communications and come out in the end looking good in the eyes of management, your peers, and users. We’ll hit just a few of his highlights.

For example, the deployment doesn’t have to cover everybody, in every department, from the start. It should begin in those areas where, as Finneran says, the “capabilities will have the biggest impact with the least inconvenience.” A slow and steady campaign will work better than dropping the big bomb all at once.

Another focus should be on integrating communications with core business processes, with an applications-conscious approach. As Finneran says, “When you can start tying UC capabilities to top- and bottom-line performance metrics, you bolster your credibility.”

And then there’s something that we’ve talked about many times before, and that is the critical need to communicate with, and train, users. They won’t use capabilities and applications they don’t feel they understand. Finneran tells of one company that hoped UC would reduce its $12,000 monthly conferencing bill. Months later, they were still paying that much to the service. Even though UC made it far easier to set up conferences using the internal network, no one had ever taught the users how to do it. So they stuck with what they knew.

He has more to say, but it all comes down to thinking things through from beginning to end, anticipating what could go wrong and putting lots of Plan B’s in place, and learning from the successes and mistakes of others. Do all that, and you may just find yourself wearing a cape at the end of your UC deployment.

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About the Author

The editor of the Seamless Enterprise oversees the content of the blog, as well as writes individual posts on issues related to convergence, network management and security, collaboration, mobility and connectivity. Editorial duties are secondary to the editor's main job, which is engineering, designing, marketing, and managing network services for the enterprise.


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