Whether it’s to help drive workplace culture and innovation, improve workflow productivity, or to help deliver a competitive advantage, enterprises recognize the benefits of high quality voice and video collaboration when an in-person meeting is not feasible.

As IT leaders build best-of-breed UC environments from a variety of providers, what isn’t so clear is how to achieve the user adoption and satisfaction required to realize a healthy ROI on these investments.

Polycom’s latest collaboration solutions for Microsoft Office 365 environments make a statement about the three elements of a video deployment that drive success.

Familiarity

With more than 350 million devices running Windows 10, there’s no arguing that the Office interface is inherently understood by most enterprise employees today. By integrating new technology into the programs and workflows that users are already leveraging, adoption rates soar while training costs are minimized.

If you are one of the millions of customers who have deployed Skype for Business, for example, opting for solutions that include the Skype for Business user interface – such as the Polycom Group Series video endpoints, Polycom VVX Series Business Media phones and the Polycom RealPresence Trio conference phone – means your users will know how to schedule, join, and manage a collaboration solution without enduring training or bogging down the helpdesk.

Ubiquity

IT pros have long understood that in order to get users to adopt a collaboration technology, it needs to be accessible to every user. Fortunately, as workers move out of traditional offices and workspaces, collaboration technology providers have responded with desktop and mobile applications that connect users to voice and video meetings as quickly as their office-based counterparts. Solutions like Skype for Business (with >1.1 billion app downloads) and Polycom RealPresence Mobile are essential tools for keeping a remote workforce connected.

Connection

For some organizations, video conferencing is still a resource to be scheduled in advance and a meeting room they have to leave their desk to access. Desktop video conferencing clients remove these physical barriers to video collaboration, but legacy video room systems and best-of-breed UC environments have left the pieces of these heterogeneous environments in silos, unable to connect with each other.

Even when IT has managed to break the silos with work-arounds, the requirements on the end users are too cumbersome to drive any widespread use. Seven, nine even twelve-digit codes scribbled on scraps of paper and brought into the conference room only to spend 10 minutes or more to get the video call successfully started. What user would tolerate that unless required to?

While being able to join a video call from any device with a camera and an internet connection by simply clicking on a link in an Outlook meeting invite is a start, true connection comes when all video endpoints – regardless of manufacturer – can be brought into the same simple meeting experience.

When organizations leverage Polycom RealConnect Service for Office 365, for example, standards-based video endpoints are seamlessly connected into a Skype for Business video call within Office 365. For the user, this means the video endpoint being used to join the meeting is irrelevant. Scheduling meetings, adding participants and sharing content can happen with just a touch on a familiar interface.

 

When these three factors are taken into consideration, organizations can see a significant and swift return on their investment. For Microsoft Office 365 users, there will soon be a way to start collaborating with any video-enabled user or room using an interface that they are already familiar with.

“There is an expectation today that enterprise technology be as intuitive and simple-to-use as the devices and interfaces we use in our personal lives. Only when the workflow for scheduling, joining or managing a virtual meeting is as intuitive will organizations see widespread adoption. Pairing Office 365 with these new offerings from Polycom helps companies protect their existing collaboration investments while delivering incredible value to the users and the organization as a whole.” – Laura Marx, Sr. Director Alliances Marketing at Polycom.

All the latest Polycom solutions for Office 365 are being demonstrated at Microsoft Ignite (booth #1624). Check out Gurdeep Singh Pall’s session on Skype for Business to see these solutions in action.