The New World of Unified Communications
Between the patent collection said to be a driver of Google's interest in Motorola and a post defining a new role for unified communications — as a focal point to squeeze usable data out of the exploding world of social media — it has become clear that things have irrevocably changed.
Instead of being a set of tools linked by presence and escalation capabilities — one of several perfectly good elevator-pitch explanations — unified communications now is broadening to become synonymous, more or less, with business communications as a whole.
Another example of this can be found in a very good post written by Jim Burton, founder and CEO for CT Link and the co-founder of UCStrategies. UCStrategies divided the first waves of unified communications into two groups: UC-user and UC-business (UC-U and UC-B). The first focuses on giving employees better ways to communicate. The second integrates those tools into business processes in order to drive efficiencies and improve ROI.
The next wave, Burton writes, is UC-analytics (UC-A). Essentially, UC-A is the mining of social networking for information and data that is valuable to the user and/or the company. Here is how he describes it:
Real-time analytics will add a new level of value to UC. Keeping with a contact center example--we are starting to see calls being monitored in real time for key words and phrases. During an interaction (call), a system looks for phrases such as "cancel service" or "let me talk to a supervisor" to indicate that a caller is dissatisfied. A supervisor can be advised of the problem call and a series of problem resolutions could be presented to the agent while the caller is still engaged with an agent.
Aspect's approach addresses the complete business issue of routing the right issue at the right time to the right resource, managing the resources needed for an effective social media response, and measuring the efficacy of the social media strategy.