How Do You Know If Your UC Strategy Is Working?

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"One of the biggest hurdles on end-user adoption is the inability to discover who is and who is not using the new tools being provided.  Until you can determine that, you are unable to address potential issues such as technical problems, training, or culture.”— Mitchell Weiss, Director, Unified Communications Products for ISI

Your company has adopted a Unified Communications (UC) strategy and you’ve deployed your new platform. You have introduced your new UC strategy company-wide but you still aren’t sure if it was a good investment, or more importantly, if your employees have grasped on to the new communication tools at their disposal.

Every company is different, just implementing your new collaboration solutions isn’t the end of the story. Here are a few ways to assess the success of your exciting new technologies.

  1. Make sure you implement a training program for employees on how to use their collaboration applications. Give specific training to those managers who will be charged with pulling data from the UC applications on your platform – whether they are recordings, reports, or usage files.
  2. Monitor your help desk for pain points in your software as a method for supporting the deployment, with additional training in particularly troublesome spots. Although usage of the help desk is not the definitive metric, it can be a helpful tactic in determining adoption.
  3. If employees aren’t utilizing the help desk, don’t assume it’s because they understand the new technology, they may be overwhelmed and not bothering with it at all. Perhaps they have created their own work-arounds. Be sure to check in with employees.
  4. Hopefully, you did an organizational analysis as part of developing your UC strategy to determine what users will communicate with each other and what features would enhance their communication. For example, if users will employ mobile devices to collaborate, plan a UC strategy that includes mobile endpoints. Studies show higher adoption rates when users are consulted as well. Do your best to extract their ideas prior to the deployment.

The Bottom Line

Many companies find it helpful to know things such as adoption rates of devices involved in their UC implementation. UC Device Level Reporting provides information on what technologies are being adopted by what users. It’s the only way to really know if your strategy is successful.

Mitchell Weiss adds, “You can determine exactly who is, and is not, using the new tools such as mobility, soft phones, etc. Once you know that, you can then dig deeper to determine why they are not using it.”

UC Reporting provides useful data surrounding your company’s operations and will give you insight as to whether your UC strategy is working. Once you’ve assessed what applications employees have embraced, (or not embraced), tailoring your UC strategy based on the information gleaned from your reports should help you see increased adoption and ROI.

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Darlene Jackson is a published writer with many years of experience in digital publishing, advertising, and public relations. Her diverse assignments include stints with Chicago Public Media, The Chicago Tribune, and various print and online media and communication outlets. She is currently pursuing a master's degree at Northwestern University.

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