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Employers need to realign their unified communications strategies

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New research suggests that businesses embracing mobile workforces may not be doing enough to improve productivity in their organisations. The survey, commissioned by Barco, and conducted by Censuswide, unveiled that many companies have conflicting strategies that may not lead to more effective collaboration amongst colleagues.

In fact, 86 percent of organisations indicated a remote working approach was being used within their business. Yet, rather than that leading to a reduction in desk space further results revealed a conflicting picture, with 73 percent of organisations saying that they still have allocated desks.IT decision makers across a range of businesses were questioned on whether “A mobile workforce and multi-device environment requires new approaches to effective collaboration.” Remote working was high on the agenda, and ranked in the top three areas of priority for IT departments, behind data security and network management.

Continuing on with the remote working theme, the BYOD trend is clearly continuing, with half (50 percent) saying personal laptops and personal tablets (45.2 percent) are being used in the workplace. However, 82 percent of those surveyed said that laptops are still company issued, perhaps an indication that businesses are not fully embracing the BYOD trend and making use of these devices in the workplace. Companies certainly recognise the potential of a unified communication strategy, as more than half (52 percent) have a dedicated budget for unified communication and collaboration technologies and that budget is either increasing or remaining the same. The top three drivers for UC&C implementations are to increase productivity (51 percent), reduce costs (44 percent) and increase collaboration (27 percent). A Barco spokesperson said: “What is clear from the results is that most companies are on the right track and realise the multiple benefits of having unified communications and a more collaborative workforce, yet there is still much more work to be done for businesses to be able to tap into its full potential.

“It’s time for companies to put more unification into their unifications strategy. There is an appetite for it, and in the future organisations need to tie all aspects of unified communications together. In our experience, selecting the right technology can be key to improving collaboration amongst colleagues – and by harnessing the many advantages of mobile workers and BYOD there can be greater productivity, better staff morale and a far more effective workforce.” When asked specifically about unified communications and collaboration technologies, those surveyed felt it was crucial that any technology is user friendly, cost effective and easy to install. Capabilities that have the most impact on effective meeting collaboration are video conferencing quality (38 percent), wireless access to the company network (31 percent) and the use of multiple screen (27 percent).

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