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Use of unified communications grows: DiData and Ovum

About 78 per cent of businesses have a strategic plan and budget to implement some components of UC and collaboration (UCC) components, while 42 per cent of decision makers have a budget to proceed with investment in most aspects of UCC, according to a study conducted by Dimension Data. The study was commissioned by the ICT services and solutions vendor, Dimension Data, and conducted by research firm, Ovum. It surveyed 1320 enterprise ICT decision makers and 1390 technology users in 18 countries.

The Dimension Data 2013 Global UCC study also identified IT decision makers in large organisations intend to spend at least $50.8 million on UCC over the next two years as its uptake increases.

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Ovum enterprise telecoms senior analyst, Claudio Castelli, said Australia is a very mature market, especially when viewed as part of a global picture.

"Australian firms reported high levels of UCC technology uptake, with 96 per cent adoption rate as compared to a global average of about 75 per cent. It is among the highest penetration levels in our study. It is also bullish when it comes to investment," he said.

However, the study indicated UCC aims of organisations are unlike that of their employees.

According to Dimension Data, when the company analysed the strategic approach that enterprises are taking towards UCC -- the BYOD trend, the focus on mobilising UC and social collaboration, and goals to increase business agility -- only 38 per cent of them profiled their users.

Another key finding of the study is that by 2015, between 34 per cent and 42 per cent of large enterprises will consider procuring various unified communications (UC) applications as a premise-based but managed service.

Dimension Data Australia director of solutions, Neil Campbell, claimed that while businesses should not ignore Cloud options, they should also be looking for a services partner to manage changing UCC assets and investments.

"Despite the existence of private Cloud solutions for a number of years, enterprises are opting to take a cautious approach to Cloud adoption, with premise-based accounting for 88 per cent of IP-PBX systems and 83 per cent of audio-conferencing bridges," he said.

Campbell added that ICT decision makers who ignore internal barriers to the adoption of UCC are putting their company at a serious disadvantage.

Other findings from the study include:

  • 50 per cent of respondents said they benefit from some form of outsourced managed services and 70 per cent said they will consider a managed delivery option.
  • Organisational and decision making challenges present the biggest barriers to UCC investment.
  • Smart devices, such as smartphones and tablets, are factors to the UCC discussion, planning and management in enterprise ICT companies.
  • Obtaining stakeholder support for a UCC business is a challenge.
  • Standard unified communications, mobile unified communications clients and social collaboration are key to UCC strategies.

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