Today’s business environment is much different from 20 or even 10 years ago.
Employees are more productive and expect more from their business tools, while companies run a tighter, more streamlined work environment. As a result, every tool is utilized to its fullest capabilities, with little room for downtime.
SMBs, in particular, are looking to get the most productivity out of their technology. Most don’t have an IT staff—and some don’t even have an IT budget, to speak of—so every technology purchase must have a direct impact on the SMB’s bottom line.
That’s what makes cloud-based communications a smart investment for small businesses. Little to no upfront investment, low IT involvement and flexibility are a few of the benefits of cloud communications.
Indeed, more companies have adopted cloud communications as a way to save money and keep their employees on task: According to research firm Transparency Market Research, unified communications as a service (UCaaS) is expected to become a $38 billion market by the year 2022, representing a 20 percent increase over seven years. Technavio, meanwhile, predicts 28 percent growth in the global UCaaS market between 2015 and 2019.
Wondering how cloud communications might benefit your business? Cloud may be a good fit for you if:
Your IT staff is overloaded, or you don’t have an IT person at all — A cloud-based communications system is hosted offsite, eliminating the need for a dedicated IT or telecom person to manage your communication needs.
Your IT budget doesn’t allow for anything more than a basic phone system — For many businesses, communications consists of dial tone and voice mail. But customers want to be able to reach your company in multiple ways—over the phone, via web chat, click-to-call from your website—at any time. Cloud communications can give your customers the options they want at a price you need through a monthly subscription rather than a hardware upgrade.
Your employees work out of the office as much as they do in the office — Today’s employees demand the flexibility to work from anywhere, and to have access to the same functionality as they would if they were sitting at their desks. Does your communications system currently offer that? A cloud-based system can, providing a feature-rich work experience using any device. Cloud communications offers many of the same phone system features as an onsite system, as well as collaboration features such as instant messaging and screen share.
Small businesses must bridge the gap between limited budgets and equipping their employees with technology to keep them productive. The functionality and low cost of a cloud-based communications system makes it a smart investment.