Businesses worldwide are switching from legacy communication systems to more efficient channels, like VoIP and UCaaS.
Companies have used VoIP — Voice over Internet Protocol — for years to help avoid long-distance costs, avoid high telecom fees, and get a faster, higher-quality service compared to landlines.
However, communications technology has advanced in recent years, leading to the rise of other telecom systems like UCaaS — Unified Communications as A service — that utilizes VoIP and other technologies.
These two telecom technologies changed how employees communicate within their companies and with their customers.
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What Is VoIP?
VoIP is a cost-effective solution for many businesses — you likely already have internet service; why should you pay for a phone line, too? With VoIP, you can use that internet service as a phone line to make and receive calls using your internet connection.
An added benefit of VoIP is that it allows you to make calls from any connected device — while a dedicated desk phone is nice, you can use a computer or smartphone with most VoIP services, too.
In addition, VoIP offers various features, depending on the service provider you choose. These features include sending voicemail messages directly to your company email address, forwarding calls to all of your devices, and routing calls to any number in the system.
Plus, VoIP has some benefits from an analytical point of view — you can use recordings and logs of each call to understand key metrics and gain insights into how your employees use each line.
Overall, VoIP has become almost a necessity for businesses looking for a single solution for a clear communication channel.
Related: RingCentral VoIP Services
When to Use VoIP
If you’re starting a new business or are an established small business that needs flexibility and more calling features, VoIP is an excellent fit.
Many call centers and similar companies use VoIP services; however, they can also benefit small businesses and help them increase their credibility. For example, a toll-free number can help your company seem more established, and features like call attendants can add some professionalism to your phone system.
VoIP services can also give you local numbers, which makes your customers feel more familiar with you — this also gives you and your employees more privacy.
And VoIP lines are helpful to remote workers and in-house employees, allowing your team to do business from anywhere. In addition, the features of a VoIP system can increase your customer satisfaction by giving them options like callbacks and making their wait times shorter.
What Is UCaaS?
Then we have UCaaS, which combines VoIP and other solutions (like video conferencing, messaging apps, etc. into a central platform. With this service, employees can seamlessly switch from one communication channel to another instantly.
UCaaS comes with some significant advantages. For example, you can switch from text to video and back to text in the middle of a discussion without ever having to change apps or platforms. It’s like having a VoIP service that integrates with apps like Slack, Discord, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and more.
UCaaS platforms also make exceptional collaboration workstations, allowing employees to access every file and message from any device. They can also create meeting rooms and set their status to let everyone know if they should contact them now or wait until later.
These platforms are also cloud-based, meaning that most UCaaS services support integrations with useful apps like Salesforce. They’re also customizable, so different employees can integrate their communications system with the apps they use more.
UCaaS is like VoIP with extra features.
When to Use UCaSS
Because UCaaS platforms offer more features and channels than VoIP alone, they have various uses for businesses of any size.
For example, healthcare organizations can use a UCaaS service for more than internal communication; they can use it for telehealth appointments, patient scheduling, file sharing, and more.
Marketing teams can also benefit from UCaaS platforms, allowing them to easily monitor campaigns, host presentations for prospects, and hold quick meetings instantly.
Other departments, like customer service, can use UCaaS to automate responses and requests, quickly access info from their CRM platform, and better personalize their conversations with long-time customers.
Any organization that can benefit from VoIP can also benefit from a UCaaS platform — and any organization can benefit (and often save money) from using these services.
Related: Microsoft Teams Phone for UCaaS
The Relevance of UCaaS In Modern Business
The primary benefit of UCaaS is that it promotes more collaboration between employees and teams. And in a workforce where remote work is becoming more mainstream, that collaboration is particularly crucial to the success of any business.
While 14% of the workforce worked remotely before the pandemic, that number increased to approximately 34% after orders to stay home became common. This change made many organizations have to make changes to facilitate remote work on the fly, and many of them were unprepared to do so.
The result was organizations using many different apps to provide solutions for conferencing, video chatting, messaging, etc. However, many employees ended up wasting a significant amount of time each day switching from app to app — it’s no wonder productivity dropped.
UCaaS helped alleviate this issue by combining VoIP calling with apps for video and conferencing, allowing employees to use the same app instead of multiple resources to work on various tasks.
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VoIP vs. UCaaS: Which Should Your Organization Use?
There’s no doubt that VoIP services are a necessity for organizations that want to keep up in a modern business landscape. And while VoIP is enough for smaller businesses that mainly use phone lines for communication, UCaaS can enable better collaboration necessary for larger organizations.
With the future trending toward work-from-home and hybrid setups, tools to enhance teamwork are more important than ever. UCaaS solutions are an excellent way to streamline communications within your company to ensure each team member has the necessary tools and apps at hand to work together.
Related: SE Telecom Voice Solutions
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