Cisco UCM Cloud - Don’t Forget the Management!
Bill Dellara, VP Product, VOSS Solutions
Cisco has recently launched their Cisco UCM Cloud offer to the market in North America and coming soon to other regions. It promises the advantage of a hosted and integrated Cisco UC stack with the advantages of the cloud, while retaining the flexibility and feature capabilities of a dedicated Cisco UC stack. The go-to-market approach through partners means you can get an experienced integrator to help with the design and deployment as you might traditionally with on-prem. This gives enterprises an additional option on their journey to the cloud, as they try to thread the needle between the advantages of the cloud without the traditional trade-offs of losing functionality, flexibility and control.
In our eyes, this is an exciting move from Cisco. However, don’t forget that Cisco UCM Cloud - like many other cloud-based UC solutions that are on the market today - will benefit enormously from a specialist third party UC automation and management tool such as VOSS-4-UC to optimize the implementation and to unlock the full range of benefits that UCaaS offers. Read on to understand why.
By partially or fully moving to Cisco UCM Cloud you will be able to control some of the operational costs of a UC platform; such as infrastructure, maintaining applications, and upgrades. These will all be taken care of for you, allowing you to focus on using the collaboration toolset to add business value rather than operating it. Cisco UCM Cloud gives you access to the full suite of Cisco UC applications including both the on-prem apps like Cisco UCM, CUC as well as the cloud-based Webex suite. The options on PSTN connectivity allow you to include it in the service or to retain and bring your own PSTN, giving you additional functionality and the commercial flexibility to meet your needs.
The ability to resolve some of the operational headaches and costs of running a Cisco UC suite will certainly be welcome. This is one of the primary drivers for enterprises looking at existing managed solutions or cloud offerings based around Cisco UC applications from a wide range of existing providers.
While Cisco UCM Cloud delivers the benefits of operational savings related to infrastructure and managing applications, there are other operational costs and business challenges around a UC solution that it is not solving. What are some of these additional costs and challenges?
- The complexity of a UC platform with the multitude of applications, interfaces, and configuration to ensure users’ services work, leads to complex and error-prone processes which require highly skilled engineers for even simple business MACD tasks.
- The need to integrate additional vendors or third party solutions into the architecture to meet more sophisticated business needs.
- The desire to integrate these UC workloads into wider business processes to drive end-to-end “zero touch” process automation.
- Ever changing business requirements that demand the solution to be able to evolve in an agile and dynamic way.
- Troubleshooting and monitoring the overall service complexity to ensure quality of service and issues are resolved quickly to minimize the business impact.
These are factors to consider when looking at the various managed or hosted UC offering out there based around the Cisco UC stack. All these offers arguably provide the operational benefits of the infrastructure and maintenance costs, however they vary considerably in how well they help you address the challenges listed above. So, how can you maximize the business benefit from your hosted or managed UC solution by solving these challenges and further reducing your operational costs?
UC management solutions like the VOSS-4-UC integrated management stack solve these challenges. VOSS-4-UC offers a full suite of solutions to address these challenges, enabling you to maximize your business benefit and minimize you operational and deployment costs.
VOSS-4-UC plays an integral role in many of the managed and hosted provider offers on the market today, helping you solve these business challenges. Alternatively, if you are looking at an offer that doesn’t include integrated UC management capabilities, such as Cisco’s UCM Cloud offer, you should plan to bring your own UC management stack. This will enable you to tailor the UC platform to your needs, maximizing your business benefit while also driving automation into your business processes to deliver the lowest cost of deployment and day-today operations.
For more on how VOSS-4-UC can help you optimize the value of your UC platform, or to discuss other factors when choosing your cloud/managed provider, then please get in touch.