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Modernize Communications and Collaboration Infrastructure


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Read this Executive Brief to understand why your team should make the case to modernize your communications and collaboration infrastructure.

Understand why it's time to move forward with modernizing your communications infrastructure.
Discover the productivity and efficiency gains you can achieve.
Redefine how you think about communications.
Learn how to build a strategy that addresses both unified communications and collaboration.
Understand Info-Tech's methodology and approach to modernizing communications and collaboration infrastructure.

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Modernize Communications and Collaboration Infrastructure

  1. 1. Info-Tech Research Group 1Info-Tech Research Group 1 Info-Tech Research Group, Inc. is a global leader in providing IT research and advice. Info-Tech’s products and services combine actionable insight and relevant advice with ready-to-use tools and templates that cover the full spectrum of IT concerns. © 1997-2016 Info-Tech Research Group Inc. V4 Modernize Communications and Collaboration Infrastructure Your legacy telephony infrastructure is dragging you down – modern communications and collaboration technology can dramatically improve productivity.
  2. 2. Info-Tech Research Group 2Info-Tech Research Group 2 The ability to work anytime from anywhere on any device is now the norm, not the exception – unless you’re still relying on legacy telephony infrastructure. In our personal lives, technology is seamless, and we expect it to be. If it’s not, we upgrade to the shiniest next best thing. Why doesn’t this happen in the workplace? Plain and simple, the lack of modern communications in your environment is reducing the effectiveness of your people and business processes. VoIP and UC are 15+ year old technologies. Both are mature. It’s no longer a topic for discussion. VoIP and UC are the proven way forward, and they’re just the first step. What’s stopping you from moving forward? Brad Wells, Research Director, Infrastructure Info-Tech Research Group Employees expect more flexibility in the workplace. ANALYST PERSPECTIVE
  3. 3. Info-Tech Research Group 3Info-Tech Research Group 3 This Research is Designed For: This Research Will Help You: This Research Will Assist: This Research Will Help You: This Research Is Designed For: This Research Will Help You: This Research Will Also Assist: This Research Will Help Them: Our understanding of the problem IT Managers Network/Infrastructure Managers Develop a clear snapshot of the current state of communications infrastructure Understand your business and technical requirements Define a desired target state that aligns with business needs, goals, and end-user needs Build an RFP for a UC solution. Develop a communications deck to pitch modernization to senior management CIOs IT Directors Ensure their organization’s IT capabilities support the evolving business needs Understand and articulate the need and benefit of implementing or refreshing communications-related infrastructure
  4. 4. Info-Tech Research Group 4Info-Tech Research Group 4 Resolution Situation Complication Info-Tech Insight Executive summary • Poorly-defined technical requirements can result in failure to meet the needs of the business. • A wide range of deployment options (on-premises to managed cloud services) makes it difficult to find the best solution. • Modernizing your communications infrastructure can be an expensive project and getting business buy-in may be tough. • Organizations are losing productivity from managing the limitations of yesterday’s technology. The business is changing and the current solution no longer adequately connects end users. • You need a solution that meets budgetary requirements and improves internal and external communication, productivity, and the ability to work together. • Define a comprehensive set of requirements (across people, process, and technology) at the start of the project. Communication solutions are long-term commitments and mistakes in planning will be amplified during implementation. • Analyze the pros and cons of each deployment option and identify a communications solution that balances your budget and communications objectives and requirements. • Create an effective RFP by outlining your specific business and technical needs and goals. • Make the case for your communications infrastructure modernization project and be prepared to support it. 1. Project scope and assessment take more time than you think. Defining project scope and assessing the existing solution make up 60% of project time. Being thorough here will make the difference moving forward. 2. It’s not about the technology. Don’t focus solely on tech without considering the requirements of your people and process. 3. Business first. IT second. Ensure your IT team communicates with the business throughout the process and establishes business requirements.
  5. 5. Info-Tech Research Group 5Info-Tech Research Group 5 Failure to modernize wastes an opportunity for significant productivity and efficiency gains Productivity Efficiency gains Collaboration Employee demand Employee well- being Opex savings Drivers of UC Adoption Expected Benefits Realized Benefits Source: PwC 6.75x more! 5x more! Unified communications (UC), for example, is an increasingly mature technology that businesses are using to achieve real benefits. For every business driver of UC adoption, the actual benefits realized are greater than expected. Most businesses make the decision to adopt UC based on business reasons (as they should), such as: • Productivity • Opex Savings • Efficiency gains What most organizations don’t expect is that UC significantly benefits a business’ employee-base too. While collaboration, employee demand, and well-being were initially less highly prized, 62%, 57%, and 54%, respectively, of all UC buyers reported realization of these soft benefits post-deployment.
  6. 6. Info-Tech Research Group 6Info-Tech Research Group 6 First, redefine how you think about communications Communications infrastructure is the foundation for your employees and business to function, interact, and produce quality content, ideas, and end results. • End-to-end tools • Call quality • Instant messaging • Presence • Video conferencing • Document management Enable your team to work together anywhere, anytime, and in any way to benefit from: Immediate access and availability to coworkers Better and more fluid productivity Accurate and real-time representation and relation of ideas It isn’t simply about having a better phone. It is about building a holistic network that brings business and people together. Communications infrastructure is not just:
  7. 7. Info-Tech Research Group 7Info-Tech Research Group 7 Failure to address technical debt by continuing with legacy communications infrastructure constrains people and process. Most think tech debt is just about dumping old technology and they forget the interconnected nature of people, process, and technology. Remember: 1. People are either limited or enabled by the right tools. 2. Effective technology enables the processes in place to better serve the business. People, process, technology all performing strongly Something isn’t working... Deep in technical debt End-of-life system problems Lack of call routing functionality Lack of scalability The top reasons businesses with legacy PBX solutions are now evaluating VoIP are: Source: Harris, Daniel. “VoIP Software Small Business Buyer Report - 2015.” 26% 52% 13% If you are experiencing these problems or other reoccurring problems and limitations, you are probably deep in technical debt. Mitigate technical debt to power business agility
  8. 8. Info-Tech Research Group 8Info-Tech Research Group 8 Prioritize investments in technology that earn your business the highest reward 1. Unified Communications 2. IaaS 3. Desktop Virtualization 4. PaaS 5. Mobile Apps 6. Software-Defined Storage 7. Human Capital Management 8. Social/Collaboration 9. SaaS 10. CRM 11. Tablets 12. Supply Chain Management 13. Data Warehouse 14. ERP CostSuccess(Risk) ROI Success (Reward) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 High Reward Low Risk Source: Computer Economics UC was rated the #1 technology investment choice in 2015! For the enterprise, no other technology has better cost success and ROI success than UC. It’s tested, proven, and mature.
  9. 9. Info-Tech Research Group 9Info-Tech Research Group 9 Unified communications & collaboration go hand-in-hand: build a strategy that addresses both • Focus on enabling knowledge sharing and team-based productivity. • Allows employees to efficiently share ideas. • Business value derived from creation of high-performing knowledge workers and project teams. Collaboration • Focus on optimizing employee-to-employee and team-based collaboration through enhanced use of real-time communication tools and presence. Communication-Enabled Collaboration • Focus on enabling individual productivity. • Allows employees to efficiently communicate whenever/wherever/ however makes the most sense. • Business value derived from reduced impediments to communication. Unified Communications Unified Communications Collaboration Unified communications and enterprise collaboration strategies are complementary, not mutually exclusive. Implementation strategy for one impacts the other. For more about collaboration-centric implementation and optimization, see Info-Tech’s solution set, Implement a Collaboration Platform.
  10. 10. Info-Tech Research Group 10Info-Tech Research Group 10 Leverage a hybrid solution model to invest in your communications infrastructure and avoid a “rip and replace” Sixty-five percent of UC deployments are on-premises, but demand for cloud solutions will likely result in hybrid UC solutions emerging as the go-forward standard. Instead of having to rip and replace, an overlay may be far more effective for your business. Hold onto your PBX until its end of life and get the framework you need as a bridge to tie the systems together. Then this also gives you leverage to use more than one vendor and you’re not locked in. – Brendan Ziolo, Head of Large Enterprise Strategy, Alcatel-Lucent Deployment Models: On-Premises: Internal IP PBX/Solution Hosted: External IP PBX/Solution; Private cloud with dedicated infrastructure Cloud: External IP PBX/Solution; Shared infrastructure with other clients accessible online Hybrid: Combine any aspect of the above deployment models and movement can occur in any direction. The deployment model that best fits your business is dependent on your current and future business needs. On- Premises CloudHosted Hybrid Hybrid Hybrid Source: Sonus
  11. 11. Info-Tech Research Group 11Info-Tech Research Group 11 Follow Info-Tech’s methodology to modernize communications and collaboration infrastructure Phase 1: Assess Infrastructure Phase 2: Define the Target State Phase 3: Advance the Project Build the roadmap and compare option costs Assess people, process, and technology Preliminary assessment 1.2 2.3 1.1 Evaluate the deployment options Align business needs and goals 2.2 2.1 Gain project approval Draft the RFP 3.2 3.1 Communications Infrastructure Roadmap Tool – Tech Debt Team Skills Inventory Tool Stakeholder Engagement Workbook Short- and Long-Term Initiative Timelines TCO Tool Request for Proposal Template Executive Presentation Deck Business Requirements Document Template Phases Steps Tools and Templates MACDs Workflows Template Platform Assessment
  12. 12. Info-Tech Research Group 12Info-Tech Research Group 12 Tech Debt and Platform Assessment (Excel) Team Skills Inventory Tool (PowerPoint) Communication Infrastructure Roadmap Tool (Excel) Stakeholder Engagement Workbook (Excel) Info-Tech delivers: Use our tools and templates to accelerate your modernization project to completion Business Requirements Document (Word) Communications TCO-ROI Comparison Calculator (Excel) UC Solution RFP Template (Word) Modernize Communications Infrastructure Executive Presentation (PowerPoint)
  13. 13. Info-Tech Research Group 13Info-Tech Research Group 13 Phase 1 Insight Insight breakdown It’s not about the tech. Non-technical and technical staff will need to use the technology – their experience, ability to use the tech, the process that will change and result from the technology migration – these are the factors governing migration success. Involve input from the user base in the discovery process and use this to inform how different deployment models or vendor systems could affect IT’s and the average user’s daily tasks. Business first. IT second. Typically, IT thinks in an IT first, business second way. “I have a list of problems and if I solve them, the business will benefit.” This is the wrong way of thinking. There are IT capabilities to consider throughout the discovery process. The IT capabilities should not define your decision, but they can help the business make the decision. The business’ needs and wants come first, then IT’s. Project scope and assessment take more time than you think. A detailed current state assessment is a necessary first step for a modernization project, but determining the right level of detail to include in the evaluation can be challenging. IT’s ability to accurately define the desired target state is heavily dependent on how well it can leverage its resources on the ground to understand the current state and how the business aligns to that understanding. Leverage the Communications Infrastructure Roadmap Tool to gather the data you need to evaluate your existing platforms. How we can help Phase 2 Insight How we can help Phase 3 Insight How we can help Leverage the Team Skills Inventory Tool, the Stakeholder Workbook, and the Focus Group Guide to analyze the needs of your people in and outside IT. Leverage the results of the Focus Group Activity and the BRD Template to inform your Executive Presentation to business stakeholders.
  14. 14. Info-Tech Research Group 14Info-Tech Research Group 14 Background Insura Holdings (IH) is a not-for-profit insurance provider. The combination of aging equipment, maintenance costs, performance, and aging technology has led IH to look for a new IPT and UC solution. UC Solution Replacement IH is looking for a unified communications solution that will allow it to better collaborate at the office location and improve productivity of remote workers and employees in the field. Complication The last few years of the current communication solution led to headaches for both the business and IT team. Some promised features, such as speech recognition, simply didn’t work. Insura Holdings successfully undertook a replacement project of legacy communications for a UC solution CASE STUDY Industry Source Insurance Member, IT Director (Anonymous Organization) Insura Holdings IT at a Glance • Approximately 150 users. Growth rate of 12% per year. Predominantly growing remote worker base. • Contact center processes 70,000 calls per month. • State’s leading benefits company for specific insurance area with one million members. My manager told me, you should call Info-Tech, and it’s been my best resource throughout this project. An advisor is really helpful. The service that Info-Tech provided was very valuable and helped me with the RFP and gave me suggestions that I wouldn’t have otherwise considered. That’s really the only resource I used throughout this project other then what I know from my own experience on the implementation side of the house. – Network VoIP Admin, Insurance Part 1/4 Keys to Project Success: • User involvement • Clearly identified stakeholder and business needs What is one key insight you could not do without going through a project like replacing a UC solution?
  15. 15. Info-Tech Research Group 15Info-Tech Research Group 15 Follow the Info-Tech communications infrastructure roadmap to modernization Make a Data-Driven Decision on Unified Communications Quantify the real value and need for UC to make the business case and build a realistic roadmap. • Develop an end-user survey for UC • Analyze and apply UC survey results Develop a Telephony and UC Strategy VoIP and UC are remaking telephony, but it’s still about dial tone. • Develop a business case • Develop use cases • Document your current infrastructure in a system map • Determine UC fit • Design your target infrastructure • Develop an implementation plan Modernize Communications and Collaboration Infrastructure • Assess infrastructure • Align business needs and goals • Evaluate the deployment options • Build the roadmap • Draft the RFP • Gain project approval
  16. 16. Info-Tech Research Group 16Info-Tech Research Group 16 Use these icons to help direct you as you navigate this research This icon denotes a slide where a supporting Info-Tech tool or template will help you perform the activity or step associated with the slide. Refer to the supporting tool or template to get the best results and proceed to the next step of the project. This icon denotes a slide with an associated activity. The activity can be performed either as part of your project or with the support of Info-Tech team members, who will come onsite to facilitate a workshop for your organization. Use these icons to help guide you through each step of the blueprint and direct you to content related to the recommended activities.
  17. 17. Info-Tech Research Group 17Info-Tech Research Group 17 Consulting “Our team does not have the time or the knowledge to take this project on. We need assistance through the entirety of this project.” Guided Implementation “Our team knows that we need to fix a process, but we need assistance to determine where to focus. Some check-ins along the way would help keep us on track.” DIY Toolkit “Our team has already made this critical project a priority, and we have the time and capability, but some guidance along the way would be helpful.” Workshop “We need to hit the ground running and get this project kicked off immediately. Our team has the ability to take this over once we get a framework and strategy in place.” Diagnostics and consistent frameworks used throughout all four options Info-Tech offers various levels of support to best suit your needs
  18. 18. Info-Tech Research Group 18Info-Tech Research Group 18 Measured value for Guided Implementations (GIs) Engaging in GIs doesn’t just offer valuable project advice, it also results in significant cost savings. GI Measured Value Phase 1: • Time, value, and resources saved by using Info-Tech’s methodology to inventory IT skills, build process flow diagrams, inventory and evaluate infrastructure, engage stakeholders, develop a project vision, and assess your current state. • For example, 2 FTEs * 10 days * $80,000/year = $6,200 Phase 2: • Time, value, and resources saved by using Info-Tech’s tools and templates to engage stakeholders, conduct a focus group, build a business requirements document, and evaluate project cost and benefit. • For example, 2 FTEs * 10 days * $80,000/year = $6,200 Phase 3: • Time, value, and resources saved by following Info-Tech’s tools and methodology to build an RFP, executive presentation, and project roadmap. • For example, 1 FTEs * 10 days * $80,000/year = $3,000 Total savings $15,400
  19. 19. Info-Tech Research Group 19Info-Tech Research Group 19 Best-Practice Toolkit 1.1 Preliminary assessment Communications Infrastructure Roadmap 1.2 People, process, technology IT Team Skills Inventory Process Map High-Level System Map Readiness Assessment Checklist Inventory Evaluation 2.1 Align business needs and goals Stakeholder Engagement Workbook Focus Group Sample Business Requirements Doc 2.2 Evaluate the options 2.3 Build the roadmap Communications Infrastructure Roadmap TCO-ROI Comparison 3.1 Draft the RFP Sample RFP 3.2 Gain management approval Executive Presentation Deck Guided Implementations Gain a notional picture of your “tech debt.” Determine methodology and goals for a deeper assessment. Check in with analyst on progress. Brainstorm solutions to any current or upcoming obstacles. Discuss and gain a clear picture of business needs and goals for documenting purposes. Gain a working knowledge of the deployment model options available and how they relate to your business. High-level gap analysis between current and future state; make plan to gather data for TCO/ROI. Gain expert insight from Info-Tech analysts on how to approach and draft your RFP. Leverage Info-Tech as a sounding board and ensure your RFP misses nothing critical to obtain a successful response. Ready to take this project to upper management? Let our analysts give you experienced and objective insight on how to present the case for modernization. Onsite Workshop Module 1: Communications Infrastructure Module 2: Evaluate the Options & Gap Analysis Module 3: Build the Deliverables Phase 1 Outcome: • Completed assessment of existing communications infrastructure Phase 2 Outcome: • BRD, gap analysis, technical requirements, project roadmap, TCO/ROI Phase 3 Outcome: • RFP, executive presentation deck 1. Assess communications infrastructure 2. Define the target state 3. Advance the project Modernize Communications and Collaboration Infrastructure – project overview
  20. 20. Info-Tech Research Group 20Info-Tech Research Group 20 Workshop overview Contact your account representative or email for more information. Workshop Day 1 Workshop Day 2 Workshop Day 3 Workshop Day 4 Activities Task – Assess the Communications Infrastructure 1.1 Identify pain points 1.2 Skills inventory 1.3 Define and rationalize template configuration needs 1.4 Define standard service requests – map workflow 1.5 Discuss/examine site type(s) and existing technology 1.6 Determine network state and readiness Task – Learn & Evaluate Options to Define Future 2.1 Focus group meeting 2.2 Define business needs and goals 2.3 Define solution options 2.4 Evaluate options 2.5 Discuss business value and readiness for options Task – Identify and Close the Gaps 3.1 Identify gaps 3.2 Examine and evaluate ways to remedy gaps 3.3 Introduce draft of BRD – determine specific business requirements Task – Build the Roadmap 4.1 Introduce RFP template 4.2 Develop statement of work 4.3 Document technical requirements 4.4 Cost benefit analysis 4.5 Money, effort, disruption analysis Deliverables 1. Documented IT skills 2. Documented process maps 3. Complete list of relevant communications and collaboration technologies 4. Completed readiness checklist 1. Assessment of business needs and goals 2. Understanding of potential future state solution options 1. Description of future state 2. Identification of gaps 3. Identification of key business requirements 1. First draft of RFP (including business requirements, technical/functional requirements, cost benefit analysis)
  21. 21. Info-Tech Research Group 21Info-Tech Research Group 21