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BizReport : Internet : August 18, 2017

Top 3 tips to move SMB comms to the cloud

Moving different areas of business to the cloud is nothing new, but successfully moving areas like communications into the cloud can be challenging. Here are three tips to start the journey.

by Kristina Knight

Align current needs with future business plans.

"By optimizing communications, small businesses benefit from improved employee productivity and collaboration, greater mobility and enhanced customer service. With cloud UC or Unified Communications as a Service, small businesses can deliver communication and collaboration services through a third-party service provider across the internet or other IP network," said Dennis Collins Senior Director of Marketing, West's Unified Communications Services. "With a single unified communications platform for tools like telephony, instant messaging, presence and videoconferencing, employees can enjoy a consistent user experience across location, device and role."

Look for vendors whose strengths support your top needs.

"Evaluate vendors not just on their technology, but also on the expertise they bring to the table and if they prioritize quality of service and a simple user experience. It's also worth noting that more established, financially stable providers are best positioned to be with you for the long-term," said Collins. "With cloud-based communication tools, companies also need to keep in mind service agreements, disaster recovery plans, security and quality controls and more must be evaluated before making a commitment. A handful of UC providers also specialize in supporting certain market segments and business sizes; examining a vendor's current client roster can help you determine if they have the experience and resources to meet your company's specific needs."

Reap the cloud UC rewards.

"There are many benefits to moving communication and collaboration tools to the Cloud. These include lower costs, improved security and redundancy, greater mobility for their workforce and more advanced, integrated features that frequently come with the unified communications as a service (UCaaS) delivery model," said Collins. "Small businesses are always looking for great ways to cut costs without sacrificing quality service and moving communication tools to the Cloud does just that. On top of cost savings, migrating communications to the Cloud takes the pressure off a small business IT team, allowing them to focus on more strategic projects."

Tags: cloud communications, cloud computing, SMB tips, West Unified Communications

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