Frequently Missing the IT Point

Michael Vizard
Slide Show

Six Unified Communications Application Benefits

UC users experience both time and financial savings.

One of the things that vendors commonly do when trying promote the adoption of any given product or technology is emphasize the benefits their offerings will bring to the organization and the people who work there.

But what many of them fail to take into account is what's in it for the IT staff if they take on such a project. It's not like the IT staff doesn't have plenty of existing work to do; each new project generally puts more, not less, work on their plates. And yet, vendors very rarely emphasize the benefit their products might actually bring to IT staffs who generally spend their days holding IT systems together with tools that often are the digital equivalent of rubber bands and baling wire.

A good example of missing the IT point is unified communications. Just about everyone talks about the costs savings that can be derived by reducing travel and the productivity gains for the employees. But David Tan, CTO for Chips Technology Group, an IT services provider, says one of the biggest benefits of unified communications is that it makes the job of the IT administrator easier. Instead of having to support a myriad of communications applications, all the communications functions of the company are now easily managed through one central console. In the case of the Lync offering from Microsoft, Tan notes that the fact that Lync can be managed as part of the overall Windows environment makes it just that much easier for IT administrators who spend most of their days working in that environment.

There are probably hundreds of instances where the benefits to the IT staff are undervalued by vendors. It's almost as if the assumption is that IT staff are just standing around waiting for an opportunity to do something. In reality, the IT environment has never been more complex. That means that if vendors hope to gain any traction in 2012, they better start putting more emphasis on what's in it for the IT staff who has to support their product on a daily basis, especially when you consider that just about everything the IT staff does benefits the business and the people who work there.

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