Benefits of Converged Voice & Data
Flexible, effective communications can increase productivity in a variety of work environments. In an office, associates can make critical contacts with customers, suppliers and other departments immediately regardless of where they are. Instant communication accelerates workflow and can also help to keep bad situations from getting worse.
Mobile access will also allow busy associates to be productive during what were formerly “dead times” in their schedules—when moving between meetings or walking to a work location. They can now use that time to check voicemail, follow-up on tasks and return less-pressing calls.
Closely tied to productivity is accessibility. In a fast-moving organization, business can’t stop simply because someone is away from their desk. Voicemail is useful, but when a situation needs to be addressed immediately, direct contact is a necessity. Customer relationships can deteriorate quickly if a critical person with the necessary information is in a meeting or unreachable because no one knows where they are. And that critical person doesn’t have to be a manager; it may be a sales associate, an engineer, a production worker, a nurse or a technician—essentially anyone who is in contact with the business process.
Mobile access allows companies to respond more quickly and more effectively. Not only can customers and suppliers reach their contacts more dependably, those contacts can in turn reach out to their internal resources immediately without having to wait for those parties to return to their desks. A quick conference among the members of the support staff can fix the situation, while demonstrating the advantage of dealing with a responsive, customer-focused organization.
This type of responsiveness can have particular relevance in retail environments. With a WLAN- based mobile voice network, salespeople on the floor can be summoned to assist customers more quickly. Once there, they can contact managers, access product or credit specialists, and confirm stock locally or in other stores all without having to leave the customer’s side.
The wireless LAN may be one of several radio-based communications systems that are used within an organization. Push-to-talk private radio systems and wide-area walkie-talkie services like the iDEN-based Sprint/Nextel network are widely used in the construction, manufacturing, retail and hospitality industries. Adding another wireless voice solution that does not connect with those systems will result in a dysfunctional set of wireless islands, or worse, force people to carry multiple wireless devices so they can access all of the wireless communities they need to do their jobs. Improving productivity should make it easier, not harder, for people to communicate.