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Skype for Business Advantages and Disadvantages
Skype for Business is a secure and reliable enterprise edition of the globally adopted consumer version Skype; the most popular voice communication service in the world. Skype for Business brings together all of the typically disparate ways to communicate into one platform, so employees can access and use multiple communication applications through a single interface, using any device and from any location.
Cross-platform Support – Skype for Business provides a connection with your employees from anywhere, and to millions of people on Skype, using Skype for Business apps on all devices, in browsers, and on compatible IP phones.
Reduction in Travel Costs – Using Skype for Business helps to cut down on non-essential business travel. A Skype for Business videoconference is a perfect replacement for a face-to-face meeting. Skype for Businesses Outlook integration also means you can schedule it into your normal work day, from anywhere, on any device.
Increase in Revenue and Opportunities – Revenues will increase, as people in business are often short of time and will choose the quickest and most efficient way of getting in touch, whether that be to purchase a service, request a consultation or to close a deal.
Cost Savings – Skype for Business enables you to replace or continue using your Legacy PBX until contract expiry, so phone bills are dramatically reduced.
Authentication – Ensures that only devices which are approved by the organisation are connected. By matching the device and user, you can limit employees to using only corporate devices or specific devices that meet the organisation’s security requirements.
Disadvantages – Poor Planning and Deployment Strategies:
Skype for Business involves a cultural change in the way users communicate and collaborate. You will be asking staff to change the way they work, so you must give them clear reasoning why they should. It also brings a range of new features and functionality that users are unfamiliar with. It comes down to the old adage ‘what’s in it for me?’ Freedom’s approach to a Skype for Business project ensures every user, no matter what their role, understands the benefits as much as you do.
Impact on Business Continuity – Throughout migration, your staff, partners, suppliers and customers will expect your organisation to continue to function without disruption. How will external services be delivered during the migration?
Increase in Hardware Requirements – Skype for Business migration could mean investing in new hardware in order to take advantage of all the applications available, such as IP telephone handsets and new laptops and tablet devices with built-in webcams, speakers and microphones. Will you provide these to all members of staff?
Impact on Network Performance – The data used across local area, wide area and mobile networks is increasing rapidly, as bandwidth-hungry applications and content such as high definition video become more prevalent. Skype for Business implementations must consider the impact that features like videoconferencing may have on the network’s performance and the ability to provide mission critical services alongside this.
Voice will Become ‘Always On’ – Review your current PBX system and infrastructure design requirements, as well as your service level agreements (SLAs), to ensure that voice can be supported as an ‘always on’ service. Also consider whether high availability is in line with current business continuity plans as it needs to be managed effectively.
Operational Structure Concerns – Ensure you have a complete picture of everybody who works in your organisation. It’s likely that you are managing a wide variety of different job roles, all with specific requirements, including full and part-time staff, sales teams and those with administrative functions. How many are there? Who do they need to communicate with? What kind of services will they need?