3 Reasons UC Deployments Fail

Peter : On Rad's Radar?
| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

3 Reasons UC Deployments Fail

Just getting ink on a Unified Communications deal is just the beginning. So many deployments go wrong or worse the company doesn't leverage the value of the platform enough to justify the purchase. The users aren't using it!

One reason that UC deployments fail is that "It was sold wrong." Customer expectations were not set properly. It was not clearly explained to the customer - and the customer's employees - that some changes would be required to take advantage of the new comm platform. And we know how much folks like change! Look for the person who says, "We've always done it this way."


During the discovery process, the salesperson should be looking at workflow - or at least call flow - to identify power users who would be most affected by the deployment. How do they use the current system? How would they like the new system to perform?

Failure happens when the system is designed wrong. Not only is discovery important in pre-sales, but in post-sales discovery information is used for the design. On a panel yesterday about UC failures, the VP of Allworx suggested that the system should be designed to look like the old system. In other words, replace what they have now but in the cloud. WRONG! The promise of cloud cannot be realized if you give them a copy of what they have now. The definition of Insanity is doing the same thing but expecting a different result. That applies here.

The third way a deployment will fail is if there isn't enough training. And training can't be just once (because employees churn) - and it can't just be self-service. The power users needed to be trainied one-on-one -- and turned into evangelists.

The expectation to the customer has to be that it will take 3-60 days to tweak the system in order for it to flow - and that users will need training and follow up in order to realize the benefits and quirks of the new system.

Some of the failure is wrapped around the price compression - no charge for install, no charge for training, free phones, etc. All of this means that the service provider has to cut corners in order to be profitable. Tough to do when, instead of selling a cookie cutter system, you sell a customized system with each sale. This makes design, deployment and support expensive.

Another point made during the panel was that cheap bandwidth and cheap SIP trunking can sink a deal. Well, that IS how we sell telecom: I'll save you money! Cheap, Cheap, Cheaper!

Design, Discovery, Network, Training and Expectations contribute to UC deployment failure.

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