Cloud collaboration is more than a cloud-based telephony platform, but also a framework in which enterprises can build a unified communications and collaboration (UCC) platform that is based on the way users actually work and collaborate. It is important for VARs to talk with customers about the way their users collaborate. By looking at some of the following use case examples, resellers can get an idea of things to discuss with businesses that are considering cloud UCC.
Use Case 1: Partner Coordination
Today, internal business functions work with a variety of outside partners. An example of this could be a project in which marketing collaborates with an outside firm on deliverables. Marketing must be able to collaborate and share files in real time, but without threatening confidential information such as a press release that could impact stock prices. Enterprise encryption, auditing, tracking, permission controls, and automatic backups keep information safe, all done in the cloud.
Use Case 2: Cultivating Sales Collaboration
Sales teams must often work under strict deadlines, such as when designing a comprehensive customer request for proposal—a process that involves rapidly evolving versions that must be instantly shared with both internal and external parties. Furthermore, the final output will most likely be connected back to an opportunity number in the organization’s CRM system. Cloud collaboration services can provide automatic versioning and syncing to ensure version integrity and to prevent lost opportunities.
Use Case 3: Support for Mobile Field Workers
Businesses must ensure that mobile or remote workers can quickly, easily, and safely access documents, even if they contain sensitive company information. Workers require access via a wide variety of devices including smartphones, tablets, and laptops. Cloud collaboration often provides that capability along with desktop synchronization and the ability to embed user interfaces in applications or sites.
Use Case 4: Project Management
Companies are looking for methods to manage projects more efficiently, beyond simply emailing around document attachments. Project management encompasses many different types of content for collaboration including document repositories, tasks, visibility over who needs to do what and when, project milestones and deadlines, project updates, reports, and wikis. Centralizing all this in one place means that everyone in the team has access to a repository of information; the cloud makes this access simple and secure.
Use Case 5: Enterprise Social Networking
Enterprise social networking in the cloud allows colleagues to share knowledge and best practices, break down organizational boundaries, and understand activity around the organization. Enterprise social networks help reduce inbox overload, move communication away from email, and prevent knowledge from getting trapped in silos such as inboxes and shared drives. Working social is about people and connections, and means ensuring that everything created is connected to people or groups. Companies that use cloud-based social systems to manage projects, share files, and collaborate externally are successful at capturing and sharing knowledge.
These case studies can be used by VARs to discuss business and user needs, and direct enterprises to the best and most valuable cloud-based collaboration services available for their requirements.
Are there additional cloud collaboration case study topics that should be addressed or added to this forum? Please comment below.