Do You Understand these 5 Critical Considerations for Successful Unified Messaging Deployment?
As mentioned in Tom Minifie’s "Message Archive for Compliance" blog post, compliance, electronic discovery, regulatory inquiries, and retention policies have become common topics within the business environment over the last few years. Existing Federal and State regulations regarding the retention and storage of electronic information means that it is critical to pay close attention to corporate compliance issues when considering the various Unified Messaging solution architectures.
AVST’s Recommendation: Consult with your corporate compliance officer or legal counsel to ensure you pick the Unified Messaging architecture that best meets your organization’s compliance requirements. If you haven’t already done so, make sure you read up on the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) that impact electronically stored information (ESI).
Preventing the external distribution of confidential corporate voice, e-mail and fax messages is, in many cases, as critical a consideration as compliance when evaluating Unified Messaging solutions.
AVST’s Recommendation: Thoroughly understand your organization’s requirements for protecting the confidentiality of corporate data to ensure you select the correct Unified Messaging architecture for your business.
Selecting a Unified Messaging solution that has the architectural flexibility to future proof your investment is another critical consideration. AVST uniquely offers four different architectural options in its Unified Messaging solution to ensure your organization has the maximum deployment flexibility today and, just as importantly, the ability to change the configuration of your Unified Messaging solution in the future based upon the evolving needs of your organization.
AVST’s Recommendation: Attend an AVST webinar on Unified Messaging to ensure that you fully understand the implications of deploying each different Unified Messaging architecture. We recommend the following recorded webinars: "Four Flavors of Unified Messaging" and "Defining the Right Path to Unified Messaging".
Understanding the capabilities of each Unified Messaging solution you are evaluating is another critical consideration. What are the features and flexibility of the solution? Does it meet the requirements of your users that will be accessing the solution via the desktop, web, phone and/or mobile device? Can you deploy different feature sets for different users?
AVST’s Recommendation: Complete the Unified Messaging checklist to ensure that the Unified Messaging solutions you are evaluating have the features and flexibility your organization demands.
Understanding the total cost of ownership (TCO) for each Unified Messaging solution you are evaluating is another key consideration. Some questions to consider (and quantify) are:
- Do I have to buy licenses for all employees in my organization?
- How much will it cost me to add additional users in the future?
- How much is the annual maintenance?
- What additional hardware and software is required to deploy?
- Do I need to upgrade or replace my groupware solution to get Unified Messaging?
- Will the Unified Messaging solution integrate with my existing and future telephony infrastructure?
- How much additional cost is involved if I decide to switch groupware solutions in the future?
- How much will it cost to implement the Unified Messaging solution?
AVST’s Recommendation: Develop a clear set of pricing, configuration and support guidelines and apply it to each Unified Messaging solution you are evaluating. Consider a five year TCO timeframe to ensure that you have the whole picture