Unified Communications – Bringing it All Together

What is UCaaS

What is UC (Unified Communications)?

Better communication isn’t just important from an efficiency standpoint – it improves team satisfaction, boosts decision-making, enhances collaboration and saves a whole lot of time and money in the process.

Sounds dreamy, but how does the average business go about improving their comms? A comprehensive solution that brings all your communication tools into a single, cohesive system is a good start. Say hello to Unified Communications (or UC).

UC combines voice, video, messaging and collaboration tools on a single platform, allowing for an easy user flow between devices, locations and applications. Effortlessly switching between communication methods, users can connect and collaborate with colleagues and clients faster and more effectively.

We’re going to take a look at this tech and how it can help your business enhance productivity, improve customer service, and reduce operational costs. That’s a trifecta of wins you want a piece of!

UC – Built on VoIP

There’s often confusion surrounding VoIP and UC, with businesses assuming they’re already on the UC bandwagon if they have a VoIP phone system in place. This isn’t necessarily the case.

VoIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol, a technology that converts voice signals into digital data packets which can be transmitted over the internet. It’s an upgrade to the traditional telephony services that serviced most businesses of the last few decades and allows for features like voicemail-to-email, call forwarding, and video conferencing.

VoIP paved the way for Unified Communications and forms the foundation on which a UC platform is built. It’s the cornerstone of the integrated services modern UC offers, essential to the instant messaging, crystal clear voice channels, presence information and collaboration tools. So, while UC is built on VoIP, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have UC if your business has VoIP set up.

What Unified Communications Can Do for You

When you have your business phone system, productivity suite and all communication tools in a single platform, you unlock a powerhouse of benefits. Let’s take a look at what they are.

Enhanced Mobility

Businesses today demand mobile solutions, with the need for employee availability both inside and outside the office gaining importance. Similarly important is the secure availability of corporate resources and information. UC is mobile-first, covering both of these requirements. Team members can work from anywhere on their authorised devices, communicating and collaborating with ease provided they have an internet connection.  

Improved Collaboration

Better collaboration is a huge driver for businesses looking to upgrade their communication platforms. Having good collaboration tools on a single platform saves time and saves you buying equipment or software you don’t need. Working on documents together in real time, sharing screens in an online video conference, easily sharing files and projects while having everything at your fingertips. It’s a perfect recipe for staying organised, focused and productive.

Cost Savings

Consolidating multiple communication services into a single platform means less maintenance and management, simply because you’re dealing with less systems. Physical infrastructure is reduced because the application is hosted in the cloud. Updates are applied automatically, and there are no maintenance expenditure spikes. Additionally, VoIP technology lowers the cost of long-distance and international calls.


Your UC system is highly scalable and will grow with your business. You can remove or add services and users as you need, giving you the flexibility to progress without being held back by your tools.

Better Customer Service

We all want to treat our customers to the very best of our abilities, right? UC allows you to provide a more efficient and responsive customer experience. Enquiries can be handled promptly thanks to advanced features like call queueing, skills-based routing and voicemail to email. Availability to customers is improved, and you can provide them with better information, faster.


It may seem like a security risk to have multiple devices connected to company information both in and out of the office. But modern UC systems come with robust security features to keep your business safe, including encryption, authentication, and access controls. Not only does this protect your sensitive information, but it also keeps you compliant with industry regulations.

What is UCaaS?

UCaaS, or Unified Communications as a Service, is the supply of UC services by a third-party provider. You sign your business up with a UCaaS provider, and they deliver a cloud-based UC solution over the internet.

The provider maintains ownership and operation of the contingent infrastructure like data centres and networks, while offering you a wide range of communication and collaboration tools through a subscription-based service. For a monthly fee, you enjoy the benefits we spoke about above without any huge upfront costs. UCaaS providers also handle the maintenance, updates, and security of the system, bringing simplicity and peace of mind to your communication management.

How to Choose the Right UCaaS Platform and Provider

smiletel UCaaS

An essential step in your journey towards improved business communications is selecting the right UCaaS provider. Every business is unique, and you want your provider to be able to cater to the specific communication requirements of your company. There are questions you can ask of potential candidates that will help you settle on the right one. These include:

Service Offerings: You need to double check they offer the tools your business needs. Go through their voice, video, messaging and collaboration services and see how they will enhance your internal and external communications.

Scalability: One of the standout benefits of UC is that it’s easily scalable. Make sure you have a provider that can leverage that scalability for your business as you grow.

Reliability and Performance: Check out their uptime guarantees, network redundancy, and overall performance. If they have excessive downtime issues, that’ll translate to trouble for your business.

Security: Are they compliant with industry standards when it comes to data encryption and authentication protocols? Are they committed to going above and beyond to protect your business information?

Integration: You already have existing systems and applications in place, and you want your UC to seamlessly integrate with them. Compatibility with your CRM, ERP or other tools will make the transition easier.

Support and Service Level Agreements (SLAs): What is the availability and responsiveness of their support service? You want issues to be resolved quickly so downtime is minimised.

Cost: Bottom line is always going to be a factor in your decision making. Evaluate whether there are any upfront costs, and what the ongoing subscription fees are. Look for transparent pricing and a clear understanding of what’s included in the service.

SmileTel – Brisbane UCaaS Providers

SmileTel is a business telco and UCaaS provider based in Brisbane and helping out businesses across Australia improve their communications. Unified Communications represents a transformative approach to business communication, and we’d love to help you harness the mobility, collaboration and productivity on offer.

Embracing UC will unlock the potential for a workplace where productivity reigns supreme, your team is more fulfilled and your communication tools align with your strategic goals.

Let’s talk about achieving that! Get in touch and a member of our team who will answer all your questions about UC.