With exponentially more processing power than the NASA computers that guided the Apollo moon missions, today’s smartphones have helped reshape modern business by enabling a highly mobile workforce untethered from traditional office-based communications. IDC researchers have forecast that mobile workers will account for almost 75 percent of the total workforce in the U.S. by 2020.
However, business mobility isn’t without imperfections. Although we have more ways to stay in touch than ever before, it can be difficult to manage the proliferation of devices, apps and services. With all of these technologies working independently of one another, we’re left to juggle multiple phone numbers, email addresses, passwords and collaboration tools
In fact, ineffective communications can be incredibly costly. According to Webtorials’ 2017 Workplace Productivity and Communications Technology Report, the typical U.S. worker spends more than two-thirds of the workday on communications-based activities, including phone calls, emails and face-to-face meetings. However, the report notes that almost 15 percent of that time is wasted due to disconnected communications platforms and policies, resulting in an average loss of $11,000 per employee every year.
One way to change that is by leveraging cloud platforms to enable mobile unified communications (UC) solutions. It is a cost-effective way to “defrag” business communications by enabling users to access all key communications tools from a common dashboard that can be accessed on any device.
Mitel recently took a major step in that direction with the launch of Mitel OfficeLink, a custom-built, cloud-based application that delivers key UC features on a mobile device. Mitel OfficeLink is delivered through the Mitel CloudLink platform, a technology innovation that enables businesses to fully leverage existing assets while extending and adding new capabilities from the cloud.
OfficeLink primarily targets small to midsize businesses (SMBs) that lack the technical resources to implement and manage on-premises UC platforms. The application bundles together easy-to-use collaboration features into a single platform, and encourages a push to cloud PBX solutions through the CloudLink platform. Key OfficeLink features include:
- Business voice features such as transfer, swap, merge, park, group calling and hunt groups
- Secure chat for both one to one messaging and group chats
- Presence and status information of users and extensions
- Dynamic calling history
- Contact synchronization and management
- Simple administrative controls
With OfficeLink, Mitel is extending its overall strategy for helping customers migrate to the cloud. The CloudLink software underpins this strategy by creating a bridge for Mitel call-control platforms to access cloud-based applications. Users aren’t limited to Mitel apps, either. They can build their own apps with their own processes.
This flexibility separates Mitel’s approach from other attempts to deliver mobile UC. The native dialer functions in many mobile devices have been incompatible with UC apps, requiring complex workarounds to make the apps work.
By eliminating compatibility issues, providing expanded application access and simplifying workflows, CloudLink removes many barriers to mobile UC. Voice apps can be optimized for specialized requirements and natively integrated into the operating system to streamline workflows and power collaboration from anywhere.
These improvements will help drive a more fully realized mobile UC strategy. In a recent survey of global telecom service providers and industry leaders, BroadSoft found that 42 percent believe the majority of UC interactions for businesses of all sizes will occur via mobile devices by 2020.
UC and mobility are becoming synonymous for the communications and collaboration needs of an increasingly mobile workforce. From small businesses to multinational corporations, organizations today are eager for solutions that will allow them to connect seamlessly with colleagues, customers and partners through a single platform. Mitel OfficeLink delivers.