Four Market Trends That Show Unified Communications’ Role in the Remote Workplace

Four Market Trends That Show Unified Communications' Role in the Remote Workplace

Enhanced “teaming” and cross-functional collaboration

As workplace environments become more complex and markets grow more competitive, cross-functional collaboration is playing an increasingly vital role in the modern workplace. This strategy builds a “culture of continuous improvement” in corporate settings by allowing employees not only to take collective ownership of challenges, but also create opportunities for colleagues with complimentary talents and different perspectives to learn from each other, as opposed to pursuing work in a vacuum.

The need for adequate collaboration solutions is nothing new — 75% of employers claim collaboration is an essential part of their business, after all. But in an increasingly virtual world, the need for those tools to work seamlessly and efficiently is more critical than ever.

Videoconferencing is Here to Stay

Even before the pandemic, research from sources like Forbes Insights hailed video meetings as the “default setting for business communications.” In the company’s 2020 survey of 312 executives, 71% of respondents agreed that key business stakeholders are more geographically distributed than ever — including managers, employees, and external business partners.

With remote collaboration on the rise long-term, companies are rapidly realizing the need to make videoconferencing tools part of their daily operations. Forbes found that 79% of those surveyed called video conferencing significantly more effective than voice calls, and they overwhelmingly said this medium provides many of the same benefits of a face-to-face encounter.

Employees Are In for Long-term Remote Work

In the annual State of Remote Work 2020 Survey by social media brand-builder Buffer, one statistic remains consistent year over year: Once employees start working remotely, they don’t want to go back. 98% of respondents said they’d like to work remotely “for the rest of their careers,” while 97% also said they’d recommend remote work to others. It’s no wonder that much of the workforce is advocating to keep their work-from-home status now that COVID-19 restrictions are lifting.

That’s not to say that work-from-home environments are flawless, however. Even with an overwhelming amount of workers preferring their remote status, nearly 20% reveal they struggle with collaboration and communication. This underscores the importance of highly available, reliable, and richly functional tools that can deliver the same efficient experiences to both on-premises and home-based workers.

The Evolution of BYOD and Omni-channel Communications

As noted by several key communications surveys, employees are quickly developing a preference for utilizing their own devices in the workplace. Research shows that 59% of organizations allow employees to use their own devices for work purposes, with some sources claiming that business professionals use at least three different devices at the office.

Similarly, 87% of companies expect their employees to use those personal devices to access business applications. It is only natural then, as the channels between personal and professional use cross, that the use of text, chat, and video in business conversations has skyrocketed.

This wide-ranging adoption of the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) movement is a “double-edged sword,” however. While it increases the ease of communication for employees, it creates challenges for companies looking to manage and document those interactions. An effective solution will consolidate channels like text, social media, and video messaging across a single interface that can be accessed via the employee’s mobile phone or desktop. Those messages can then be managed by administrators and become part of the ongoing database of all company-wide communications.

As these market trends illustrate, unified communications solutions are here to stay — which means if you’re not offering them to your customers, you’re missing out on a rapidly-growing opportunity. To learn how to get started with cloud communications, download our essential guide to cloud communications. It covers everything you need to know to capitalize on the lucrative cloud communications market and help your customers stay productive, connected, and engaged, through 2020 and beyond.