The days of forcing employees to travel into the office or commute to another location to attend a meeting are fading as newer communication solutions are making collaboration possible anywhere at any time. This is especially the case with Microsoft Lync - an instant messaging, video conferencing and Voice-over-Internet-Protocol suite that is helping organizations improve productivity, replace aging infrastructure and reduce operating costs.
StateTech magazine recently highlighted how Minnesota's Dakota County has experienced the difference of Microsoft Lync compared to its older communications model. The municipality has three office buildings separated by approximately 27 miles apiece, according to David Miland, IT infrastructure manager.
"People used to drive that distance to hold a meeting, but now we can run a video conference with Microsoft Lync," Miland said. "And some of our staff who occasionally work from home are surprised by how easy it is to remotely attend meetings back at the office using Lync with a PC webcam."
Sacramento County in California also relies on unified communications (UC) technologies from Microsoft and has experienced various benefits to the tools compared to older solutions. Debra Nadolna, IT division chief of the county, said the municipality saves $2 million annually using UC compared to maintaining legacy equipment and staff-related costs. She also explained telephone rates declined from nearly $35 monthly to less than $19 for all of its 14,000 phones that are operated via VoIP, the news source reported.
In addition to benefiting from the cost savings of VoIP, organizations still relying on traditional landlines should also consider the productivity advantages of the suites. For example, workers can now make and take calls through Internet-connected devices, providing customer service anywhere at any time, regardless of physical location. This level of flexibility can be a big competitive advantage over rivals forced to converse with clients predominantly from an office setting.
Microsoft Lync becoming bigger player in UC industry
Microsoft Lync is rapidly gaining significant traction in this important market, ComputerWeekly reported. Jon Arnold, principal analyst of a telecommunication consultancy, asserted Microsoft has a clear advantage over other vendors in this space, specifically in its integration with other Microsoft solutions.
"We all use Microsoft, and UC needs Microsoft integration to be effective," Arnold said, according to the report. "Lync will work seamlessly on the desktop by its nature, whereas UC vendors face challenges in getting their solutions to do the same."
The news provider concluded that Microsoft Lync may be a newcomer to the UC industry and took more than a decade to find its direction, but even the system's detractors have to realize the suite is a key player for the long haul.
Focus on the tools, not adoption process
Microsoft Lync delivers where older communication tools can't. Organizations interested in integrated VoIP capabilities, instant messaging and video conferencing all in one can do so without worrying about the implementation process on their own. At Beringer Associates, we assist clients with their IT product launches from start to finish by analyzing their operational needs to provide a roadmap that will support their growth over the long run.
As Arnold highlighted, Microsoft is known for integrating its tools, so it is important that firms have a service provider that understands all of these different parts. We are a Microsoft Partner and fully understand how products such as Lync function and how all of these suites work together. To learn more about how we can help your organization adopt any and all Microsoft products, do not hesitate to contact us today.