Author: Michael Cromwell

Enterprise models are changing, and your workforce may become more distributed for a long term than you ever anticipated. Instead of shouldering the burden of an expensive Network Operations Center (NOC) themselves, enterprises are choosing to outsource this work. The right third-party NOC can provide several key benefits to your organization. This article will explore six key benefits for using an outsourced NOC. Uptime and Network Reliability In computer networking, a reliable protocol provides notifications to the sender as to the delivery of the transmitted data as opposed to an unreliable protocol which does not provide assurance of the delivery…

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In these crazy times, there are companies that struggle, and some that were effectively made for such events. 2600hz is definitely in the latter category. 2600kz co-founder Patrick Sullivan speaks with Mike Cromwell and Dave Gilbert about the decade long journey of his business, their innovations, and some insight into the future of CPaaS and UCaaS Topics: The urgency of setting up home offices.New products from 2600hz.How the proper applications and tools can make working remote more efficient and effective.What to do about “Zoom fatigue”. Take a listen, and let us know what you think.

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When COVID-19 restrictive measures began to be enforced, working from home was a natural response to keep organizations running. Although there may be some challenges to this new mode of working, there are also many benefits for businesses and employees alike. Prominent IT support company, Computers In The City, has recently developed an infographic showing how this new trend has impacted business, as well as its benefits and useful advice.

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First Comm might be the oldest telco you’ve never heard of. Kevin Bartnicki, VP of Business Development and Miriam Bitton, Director of Marketing join Mike Cromwell and Dave Gilbert about how they built a business from an energy company to a communications company, their specific journey, and what they have planned for the future. Topics: First Comm’s business transformation.How to help new customers coming into UCaaS.Developing parallel training for employees as well as customers.Work from home and business continuity in a post-pandemic era. Take a listen, you’ll be happy you did.

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While the yellow pages may be a relic of a bygone era, telephones are still crucial to business. Almost two thirds of customers still prefer to make initial contact with a business by telephone, and almost 70% have used a click to call from a search engine result. Just a few years ago, the leading source driving phone calls was mobile searches, followed by desktop searches – together accounting for 65% of the total volume. For the most part, when a customer calls a business, they expect to be connected to the appropriate person or department with minimal wait. Unified Communications services can…

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Broadsoft was at the forefront of a revolution in enabling cloud services. One of its founders, Mike Tessler, talks with Mike Cromwell and Dave Gilbert about his journeys, successes, and learning opportunities. Topics: Broadsoft’s early vision.Being a UCaaS pioneer.Enabling workforce flexibility, mobility, and remote work.Utilization of the cloud. Take a listen, you’ll be happy you did.

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What will we see after the COVID-19 Pandemic? Even before the news cycle was dominated by terms like “stay at home order”, “social distancing”, and “flattening the curve”, the business world was opening up to the idea of remote work. A survey conducted by LinkedIn in late 2019 noted that the prospect of work from home is enticing for employers and employees, with benefits such as better work-life balance, increased productivity, and lower cost for buildings and infrastructure for the business itself. And while the trend was rising up, it has exploded due to the current environment. Remote services like Zoom, WebEx, and Twitch have…

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Even a remote workforce can be a dynamic and engaged one. Teams of employees have moved from cubicles to collaboration spaces, and now they are moving to a remote environment where many of them work separately from others. This could be the result of offshoring, building teams where you find the best talent even if they are not local, or because the pandemic du jour is driving the principle of social distancing. While software from Zoom and others can make it possible to hold virtual events with very little specialized equipment, there are manufacturers like Poly that will offer upgraded devices to make your meetings and…

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So the bill was mysterious for the last time, or customer service just isn’t how you wanted. Maybe you’re sick of surcharges and fees that seem to come out of nowhere. Maybe you have a sudden need for more remote workers and your current system just can’t handle it. You have decided to leave your phone company, but what should you do before that happens? You can ease the transition to a new telephony provider by performing some legwork up front. Below is a list of information you should gather before talking to a possible new provider. 1. Gather Your Inventory Take…

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Call recording has been a component of office phone lines for decades. Useful for gathering information about the calls themselves, and to do quality assurance checks on employees that represent your company, call recording provides a mechanism to go back in time and review an interaction. With a hosted PBX, the calls that are recorded are not housed on a server in a closet in your office, instead they are kept in the cloud. Depending on the particulars of your service, there are some parameters that can dictate which calls are recorded, who can access these recordings, and the level…

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Mortality and Morbidity Reports are used in the medical field to analyze the underlying causes of a patient’s death. While UC deployments do not carry with them life and death consequences, the ability to review situations that were less than ideal is a great practice to utilize as a core process improvement step. After Action Reports are valuable for this industry for their own reasons.After a Unified Communications (UC) deployment is concluded, it’s good practice to look back at every stage in the process to see if there were any lessons that can be learned. This can naturally be time…

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When looking for a provider for your unified communications system, at some point you will be presented with some options for desktop phones or other devices. If you choose devices that can be taken with you in case you decide to go with another provider, you will get some benefits. We discussed the ideal equipment to set up your home office in a previous article, and now we can talk a little more about devices themselves in this article. One major brand of SIP enabled phone manufacturers is Poly (formerly Polycom), and their quality and reliability is considered among the best. Related Blog: Freshly Rebranded Poly is…

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The role of the UCaaS provider is frequently as a technology broker – to offer and provide a suite of services to the customer. To make the product catalog less intimidating, these features are bundled into packages. Each package may have dozens of features, such as voicemail, speed dial, call forwarding, etc. Michael Sterl of Cloud Optik notes that once installed, many providers immediately look to find the next customer, and the adoption of the entire service pack may not be complete. This leads to customers being unaware of what they are truly paying for, which can lead to dissatisfaction and churn. Similarly,…

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Within an organization that relies on salespeople to go out and present their products to others, you can find most of these professionals along an axis of loyalty that terminates with a complete company Advocate at one end, and a Mercenary salesperson at the other. These poles have specific characteristics, and this article with compare a few characteristics of each. Business Card A Mercenary will put his name at the top of the business card, because they are the business. An Advocate will have the company’s name and logo at the top. This is a crucial differentiation among them. While…

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Your cloud-based phone system works very well in the cloud, routing calls though auto attendants and voicemails. But at some point you need to precipitate (incoming call from the cloud) or evaporate (outgoing calls to the cloud). To do this you require an end-point of some type. Most commonly, these end-points are either a desktop phone or a soft phone client running on a wireless phone or a computer. Which is better for your small to medium business? What are the advantages and disadvantages of each? This article will explore and answer these questions. Desk Phones Desk phones, from…

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There are (at least) two ways of delivering blended training. That is to say, combining self service resources such as job aids and user guides in combination with live, recorded, or webinar training. Front-Loading The first way, and the seen more often, is referred to as front-loading: delivering extensive training followed by fewer resources after the training. This method presumes that the attendees are absorbing a great amount of the initial material and will only need the job aids later as a reminder. With a skilled and savvy instructor, the initial training session can be very productive, but in this…

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So the bill was mysterious for the last time, or customer service just isn’t how you wanted. Maybe you’re sick of surcharges and fees that seem to come out of nowhere. You have decided to leave your phone company, but what should you do before that happens? You can ease the transition to a new telephony provider by performing some legwork up front. Below is a list of information you should gather before talking to a possible new provider. Gather Your Inventory Take an inventory of the number of phones, their location, their extension number, and who uses them. You…

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Despite the constant barrage of emails you receive on a daily basis, businesses still need telephones. The ability to provide instant contact with a human voice in a two-way manner that telephones offer is still unbeatable by other communication forms. As phone systems evolve, more and more features become part of the package. How does a small to medium sized business fully utilize these Unified Communications features in a way that facilitates inter office communication to increase productivity and efficiency? Let’s explore some of the UC features and what they can do for your business and your customers. Busy Lamp Fields Most…

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Despite the constant barrage of emails you receive on a daily basis, businesses still need telephones. The ability to provide instant contact with a human voice in a two-way manner that telephones offer is still unbeatable by other communication forms. As phone systems evolve, more and more features become part of the package. How does a small to medium sized business fully utilize these Unified Communications features in a way that facilitates inter office communication to increase productivity and efficiency? Let’s explore some of the UC features and what they can do for your business and your customers. Busy Lamp Fields Most…

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Technology is pervasive, it is found in every corner of modern life. Technology is abundant, with ever changing systems and processes seemingly proceeding without end. Technology is difficult for some to learn, and each iteration of a new application or device earns another battle with the idea of adoption. Even the most technologically savvy staff will require some kind of training whenever a new piece of technology comes into play. This could be as simple as updating the appearance of their email system due to an upgrade or as complex as adding a new phone system to replace the one…

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