How video calls fit into a unified communications system
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How video calls fit into a unified communications system

4th October 2019
By Tom Ladle

First port of call, what is a unified communications system? Who doesn’t love a bit of context? A unified communications system is a unified communications system (just teasing). It’s a system that combines multiple communication channels, to create one holistic, bada$$ business channel that includes various platforms. Often the system will include instant messaging, voice, email, SMS and the star of the show – video calls.

So how does video fit into the infrastructure of a unified communications system? What role does it play? How does it rank in the pecking order? Does it truly belong? These riveting questions will all be answered in this post, so stay tuned.

The rock ‘n’ role of video (see what we did there?!)

If any of the platforms that comprise a unified communications system were rock n roll (they’re not btw), it would be video. It requires the most energy from people who are using it, it’s in your face (literally). Video is used when you want to get stuff done, it encourages productivity and engagement.

Don’t just take our word for it. In a survey of almost 5,000 users, 94% said it increased efficiency and productivity, 88% said it increased impact of discussions and 87% said it expedited decision-making[1]. Video plays a pivotal role in the unified communication ecosystem, often saved for the occasions where you need to make an important decision or simply a great first impression. If you wanted even more exciting stats around video, according to a recent survey we carried out, 61% of UK and 72% of US respondents believed webcams in online meetings will increase in the future.

And with a host of other features such as screen share, online chat, present document and more, now is the time to jump on the bandwagon. Video calling aren’t just a one hit wonder, they’re here to stay with endless tricks up their sleeve (will slow down on the personification).

Pecking order rankings (meeting solutions edition)

  1. Conference call
  2. Video conferencing
  3. Instant workplace messaging
  4. Cloud phone system
  5. Webinars
  6. Email
  7. SMS
  8. And the rest

As you can see from our definitive meeting solution rankings, video conferencing is way up there in terms of productivity, (disclaimer: this is opinion, not fact). Conference calling is still taking the crown as according to the same survey mentioned above, it looks like some of us brits are not yet ready to fully embrace video (boo)! 32% of UK respondents said that they only used video if they were asked, and 46% said using webcam makes them self-conscious.

On a more positive note, the future of video looks bright. The imminent arrival of 5G and developments in virtual reality (VR) will bring several techy, blow your mind innovations. 5G will bring better speed and bandwidth, improved quality, increased mobility and holographic conferencing capabilities. To discover more about what these changes will mean for video click here. It looks like video could potentially move up in the pecking order and rule the roost, roost being unified communication systems (just to be clear).

Does it belong?

Hell, yeah it does! Video is a key player in the word of unified communication systems and is as close as you can get to a face-to-face meeting without being, well, face-to-face. Don’t underestimate the power of putting a face to a name, creating a more open and effective communication channel. As tech advancements show no sign in slowing down, the platform will only improve leaps and bounds. If you’re looking to adopt a more unified approach, video should be high on your list.

[1] https://www.viewsonic.com/library/business/business-benefits-of-video-conferencing#targetText=Greater%20knowledge%20of%20the%20benefits,Better%20business%20relationships