Business Calls Without Disruption
Circumstances today have most business leaders scrambling to consider how they can expand their work from home policies quickly. One area of primary concern is ensuring remote employees can continue to make and receive all of their business calls, without disruption or degraded performance, when not in the office.
If you have upgraded your PBX system to support unified communications (UC), then you should have what you need to begin, or expand your use of a broad remote work model. Workforce mobility, including support for mobile and remote workers, has always been one of the core value propositions for UC solutions. That is certainly true for businesses using Cisco Unified Communications Manager (UCM).
Cisco UCM offers many ways to keep your mobile workforce connected and productive from anywhere.
Single Number Reach
Let’s start with the Single Number Reach feature, which enables users to route calls to their business phone number to both their desk phone and their cellular phone simultaneously and answer on the most convenient device. Single Number Reach ensures you never miss an important business call.
Soft Client Apps
Another important feature for mobile workers is the soft client, which brings your UCM business calling, messaging, meeting and team collaboration functions to all your computing devices, such as laptops, smartphones, and tablets. The soft client allows you to take all your office communications anywhere. UCM supports both Cisco Jabber and Cisco Webex Teams.
User-Installable Desk Phones
For users who will be primarily working from home for an extended period, UCM makes it easy to offer the convenience and audio quality of a Cisco IP desk phone that employees can install at home. Ship the phone to the user with a system-generated QR code, or activation code. When the phone is received, your employee simply plugs the phone into the network, enters the code and their phone boots up and is ready to use. Not only is the QR code phone activation simple to use, but it is also OAuth based, making it extremely secure as well.
Performance With Security
Your UCM system has been engineered, using media and bandwidth optimization features that ensure all system voice and video traffic are of the highest quality possible. Media flow is optimized, so that your voice and video media traverse the shortest possible path between endpoints, to minimize bandwidth consumption and latency.
When people are working from home, it’s important that broadband network connectivity remains secure and network bandwidth is available and prioritized to support high-quality audio and video performance.
Cisco UCM keeps your data safe, with secure, single sign-on (SSO) and end-to-end encryption of media and signaling data. We recommend the use of Cisco Mobile Remote Access (MRA), which provides secure firewall traversal to support provisioning, registration, call control, messaging and presence services to your endpoints outside the Cisco network. Read more here, in the MRA deployment guide.
Personalize Your Experience
Once you have the technical details covered, you can focus on the finer points to make your work from home experience the most enjoyable. Set yourself up in a well-lighted, comfortable location, conducive to work and away from the distractions of home.
If you have kids at home or live in an otherwise noisy area, you will want to invest in a set of high quality, noise-reducing headphones to use during your calls and meetings. A great headset helps you avoid embarrassing interruptions during business calls and improves your overall mental state throughout the day. You will notice the difference. Check out the Cisco Headset 730 here. The Headset 730 offers an exceptionally crafted audio experience for your calling and music pleasure.
How to Work Efficiently From Home
As in all situations, be sure to equip yourself with the tools that give you the best foundation for working from home. Cisco offers a complete selection of endpoints for all your audio, video, meetings and co-creation needs, for home and office.
Many of the Cisco IP phones have WiFi capability making connecting even easier. Find the right choice for yourself here.
While working from home may be a new experience for many of your users, it doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice on quality, security, or even the professional appearance your workforce delivers when away from the office.
Cisco has been supporting our customers in developing and executing their remote work strategies for twenty plus years now. Cisco UCM licensing allows administrators to immediately configure additional work from home users. And for our customers convenience, as you deal with the COVID-19 situation, Cisco is offering 90/180 day temporary licenses, so your system licensing is ready to support your work from home plans. To take advantage of this offer, click here.
Talk to your Cisco account team about how we can help you build a successful work from home model for your business.