Here we go again! The Taoiseach has directed people to work from home unless it is absolutely necessary. For many businesses, it is reminiscent of the directive given in March 2020 by the government, encouraging a remote-first work arrangement to combat the pandemic. Amidst the several disruptions and challenges instigated by lockdowns, fear of the unknown, and race to implement social distancing protocols, businesses have made significant progress in adopting modern tech to ensure business continuity - a positive outcome from a challenging year.
The global outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has shaken businesses out of their complacent attitude to disaster planning. With the tech advancements accelerated by the shift in work practices and ways of doing businesses at your disposal, your business can tackle any business continuity challenges. Cloud technology has been a godsend in these times. The very nature of cloud-tech means that your business can power any business app and streamline processes from anywhere - all you need is an internet connection.
As you begin to file away your return-to-work plan and replace it with a business continuity strategy, it's important to incorporate the learnings from the previous lockdowns and restrictions. One issue that was commonplace in previous lockdowns was the communication gaps that appeared as teams became dispersed as businesses shifted to remote working. For example, employees used to making business calls from their desks and collaborating in in-person meetings were at a disadvantage working from home with no tools to support them. Problems that were solved with a quick meeting in the boardroom or confidential files that could be dropped at a desk, quick business calls and other daily tasks became difficult. Disruptions to communication were a major challenge for streamlining business processes. Many businesses have learnt that the right tech can bridge the communication gaps and eradicate silos - this is why there has been an increase in the adoption of tech that tackles the communications crisis.
Leading the pack is Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams has become the destination app for modern businesses. And why not? Microsoft Teams is a single app that lets you collaborate, share files, message and make video and voice calls - everything you need to connect and collaborate from anywhere. With global users increasing from 75 million in April last year to 145 million this year, it's clear that Microsoft Teams will remain a leading business app in our modern business environment.
While Microsoft Teams gives you the capabilities of a unified communications solution with its out-of-box features that address many communications issues businesses face, it has its limitation in giving you the peace of mind you need in your business continuity plan. For instance, Microsoft calling Plans are only available in a few countries, making it hard for businesses with a global workforce to obtain local phone numbers - and frankly, they are confusing to set up and expensive. When you factor restrictions with call recording, call routing and integration with other apps - it becomes apparent that Microsoft Teams on its own is not a fix for all your communications challenges - this is why we created IPT for Teams.
IPT for Teams takes your Microsoft Teams app beyond collaboration by integrating it with IP Telecom's hosted phone solution, giving you a truly unified communications solution, one without limitations, that fits seamlessly with the way your business functions. As a result, you get to keep all the features you love about your Microsoft Teams app and add IPT Phone's features that ensure your business stay connected from anywhere. So when you are putting your business continuity plans in place, you know you can rely on the many benefits of IPT for Teams, which include:
BYOD - meaning you can turn any device into your work phone
For many switching to remote working, the challenge is replicating their work environment at home. Top of the list of impediments is the inability to make business calls from any device. IPT for Teams enables any user to make external calls from their Teams dialer, using any device. With no limit to the number of devices, all you need to do is download the app to your device of choice, and off you go making business calls. This is a dream for office managers - as they don't need to provide new devices to enable employees to work away from the office. Your finance manager will be well pleased too - utilising existing tools means there is no need for new hardware investment.
CRM Integrations to improve customer experience
When businesses make changes in processes and operations, customers often suffer - and it shouldn't be. IPT for Teams allows you to integrate your business app and CRM systems with your communication systems. As a result, you can give your customers a personalised user experience. All interactions are recorded with all your business systems speaking to each other - allowing you to deliver services better. The communication silos and gaps mentioned earlier are bridged with the availability of accurate customer data - this will improve employee engagement and boost productivity. For your employees, all the information to serve your customers better is available with just one click.
Communicate better with no restrictions
IPT for Teams gives you the full functionality of a hosted PBX in your Microsoft Teams platform. No need for app-switching, you can make external calls anywhere, and each user can avail of a direct number (DID), making them reachable no matter where they are. Employees can make internal calls to each other for free with individual extension numbers. So no more high mobile bills incurred from calling employees mobiles - and your employees can maintain your company's business image with business numbers for external calls to customers.
Onboarding users or making changes? The power is in your hands.
IT Managers have had their work cut out in the last few months. Onboarding users remotely, ensuring security and creating failover options are among the many things IT leaders are tasked with in this environment. With IPT for Teams, there's no need for extra training with users utilising their familiar Microsoft Teams platform. IP Telecom provides a simple web portal for all administrators to manage their phone systems. Users can be added as easy as creating a Facebook profile. And changes can be made with a few clicks. IPT for Teams comes with useful features such as out-of-hours settings and call routing that is easy to activate, ensuring your business stays connected no matter the disruption.
Availability, reliability and security with IP Telecom
As many users continue to use Microsoft Teams, outages become more commonplace. Microsoft Teams experienced 42 outages in 2020. The last thing you need when your employees are dispersed is a service outage of your major communications solution. IPT for Teams gives you a distinct advantage as you can rely on multiple failover options of IPT Hosted Phone powered by the IP Telcom's network. IP Telecom's network is housed in multiple data centres, which gives you the peace of mind that in all but the most catastrophic disaster, there is always an avenue for you to continue communications.
Go beyond Microsoft Teams
IPT for Teams is the single integrated cloud platform that your business needs to avoid any disruptions. This powerful solution gives all your employees a single experience - enabling them to communicate, collaborate and meet virtually at ease. It is designed to solve your communications challenges and bridge gaps.
Ready to learn more? Contact IP Telecom's business communications advisor for a demo of the solution here: book a demo.