October 16, 2015
Yes, it’s true that UC adoption suffers due to lack of employee training. I remember in our company when we first deployed Microsoft Lync (now Skype for Business), the individuals more involved understood and were aware of all the great features that were available to them. However, not everyone did and there was a lot of pushback, complaints, etc. Being device specialists, we had our pick of devices. Initially, everyone had desk phones optimized for Lync. After about three months, the majority of employees had removed their desk phones and opted for wireless headsets (single and multi-connectivity) and/or USB speakerphones. And of course they have a USB webcam for video calls and we have conference cam in a conference room for voice/video calls.
As a communications and collaboration specialist, I encounter several scenarios daily where customers are simply unaware of all the feature/functionality their UC platform offers.
We often get calls from customers who have had a UC platform for months or longer and have just now discovered they can “click to call”. They thought all they had was Presence and IM capabilities. Of course, now they want a “USB Headset”. As we probe a little more to understand their daily routine, we come to find in many situations, customers need more than just a USB corded headset.
I say this because often times when organizations are budgeting for a UC platform, they tend to budget $30 for a USB corded headset. Unfortunately, in most cases, that isn’t the solution. Organizations need to take time to consult with a communications and collaboration devices specialist who can walk them through the various options.
Every organization has various use cases, employee types, environments, and applications. It’s important to develop employee profiles and understand how they work on a daily basis. Are they desk-centric meaning they spend 90% or more of their day at their desks. Are they office-mobile? Meaning they spend part of their day at their desks and the other part moving about the office. Are they mobile? These are your “road warriors” who spend their time in cars, lobbies, planes, trains, hotel rooms, etc. Additionally, there are different environments. You can’t use a $30 USB corded headset in a conference room. You need different devices. What about in a lobby or other common areas?
Then, of course, we need to understand if they have multiple devices i.e. Laptop/PC, Desk Phone and/or Mobile device. Would it be beneficial to connect to all three or any combination of the three or two? Device manufacturers today offer solutions that allow multi-connectivity.
Wait there’s more, which UC platform? There are multiple headsets, phone, audio conferencing, and video conferencing device manufacturers however only a select few offers Optimized, Certified, Interoperable, Compatible with the various UC platforms. A communications and collaboration device specialist can help customers navigate through the overwhelming options and narrow down the choices to the appropriate devices so their employees utilize the UC platform more effectively. Of course, it is important for the organization to do its best to provide training. Our organization has provided this type service in the past and is strongly considering making it a regular line item as we know from our own experience how challenging it can to get employees to utilize the new UC platform.