The Quick and Easy Guide to Hosted UCaaS
There’s a reason the market for UCaaS is predicted to have double-digit growth through 2028. Hosted UCaaS – unified communications hosted in the cloud – became a pivotal tool for businesses that needed more flexibility during the pandemic.
And as we move into a post-pandemic business landscape, companies are looking for ways to prepare for the next disruption, thrive in a changed environment, and remain competitive. Hosted UCaaS ticks all of these boxes. It’s also cost-effective, easy to use, and fast to implement.
But if you’re new to cloud-based communications technology, you’re probably wondering how one platform could have such a significant impact on so many organizations and the way they operate. We’re answering all your questions about cloud-based unified communications in this quick and easy guide to hosted UCaaS. Read on to learn what it is and why it’s become a must-have tool for many companies.
What Is Hosted UCaaS?
Hosted UCaaS is unified communications software that’s hosted in the cloud and delivered as a software as a service (SaaS) solution. Because it’s cloud-hosted, your provider maintains it. That means you don’t have to use up available IT resources to monitor, store, protect, and update the platform.
As a result, you can save on hardware costs, and your IT staff has more time to focus on mission-critical tasks.
How Does SaaS Work?
With SaaS, which is a type of cloud model, your business pays a regular fee as long as you use the software. Often with SaaS solutions, you pay a monthly subscription fee that reflects the number of users you have.
Each user will have a secure log-in. And, if you’re scaling your business and want to add users, you simply expand your subscription.
One of the key advantages of SaaS solutions is they are location agnostic. Your employees don’t need to be in the office to log on. As long as the application is downloaded on their device and they have a secure internet connection, they can access your UC solution. Essentially, with SaaS software such as UCaaS, work can happen from anywhere.
What Is Unified Communications (UC) Software?
Unified communications is a type of business software that brings together important communication tools under one umbrella.
- Business phone
- Video conferencing
- File management
What Are the Main Advantages of UC?
By unifying all your communication tools, your teams can be more productive. Employees have more control over how they interact, and switching gears is seamless.
An all-in-one platform also promotes better team collaboration because your users have a variety of ways to connect. From quick team chats to video meetings, everything is available from one platform.
And with an advanced cloud-based solution, all your data is synced and updated in real-time, making it even easier to collaborate and to deliver an exceptional customer experience. Industry-leading UCaaS solutions will integrate with other business tools, such as your contact center software and popular business apps like Salesforce, Slack, Outlook, and Google Workspace.
What Types of Businesses Can Benefit from UCaaS?
Because you get consolidated communication tools and more flexibility, UCaaS is a win for all industries and all business sizes. From healthcare research to energy, a cloud-based unified solution helps your teams stay connected, no matter what’s going on in the world. Global pandemic, natural disaster, or the rise of remote work – with hosted UCaaS, your organization can keep moving forward.
Why Was Hosted UCaaS Important During COVID?
COVID-19 revealed how reliant businesses are on their physical locations. Traditionally, that’s where work happens.
But, when teams couldn’t come into the office because of COVID safety concerns, companies had to find a way to keep everyone connected. For many companies, cost was also a big concern. They needed to go through a technological leap, without increasing their IT expenses.
Because UCaaS is hosted in the cloud on public cloud servers, adopting this technology is accessible to even the most budget-focused businesses. And, switching over is easy.
So to keep their teams connected, businesses started using UCaaS during the pandemic. It’s estimated that today, nearly half of companies globally use UCaaS. And with the persistence of remote work post-pandemic, that number is expected to rise to 70 percent by 2023.
How Secure Is Cloud-Based Unified Communications?
One of the biggest concerns companies have with switching to cloud technology is security. You are relying on your cloud provider to keep your data safe.
But, as providers have to ensure top-notch security to remain competitive, you can count on more layers of security than your company could probably afford.
What Security Controls Should Your UCaaS Provider Use?
To ensure your UC solution is secure, and to make sure your company is living up to compliance standards in your industry, you’ll want to choose a cloud provider that goes above and beyond when it comes to securing their networks and data centers. Here’s what you should look for:
- SSAE 16 Type II-audited data centers
- Processes should be designed to meet HIPAA, PCI-DSS, and financial regulatory compliance standards
- Email encryption and file sharing and backup
- Endpoint protection measures, including device encryption, two-factor authentication, and endpoint detection
- Robust physical security with secure access policies and security guards
- Network security, including network access control, intrusion prevention and detection, and enterprise-class firewalls
What About Reliability?
As with security, you can count on better performance and reliability than you’d get with on-premises software. Look for a cloud provider that offers 99.999% uptime and a financially backed service level agreement and take downtime off your list of worries.
Do You Have to Migrate Your Data to the Cloud to Use Hosted UCaaS?
Your provider can migrate your data for you. Choose a hosted UCaaS provider that offers expert onboarding services, and your teams will be able to start using your UC services right away.
Learn More About Unified Communications as a Service
Secure, flexible, and cost-effective, hosted UCaaS will continue to be a core communications technology solution for businesses. If you’re looking for a leading unified communications solution, explore Intermedia Unite. Find out how your business can experience wherever, whenever communications with budget-friendly, full-featured UCaaS.