You may have heard about how unified communications can save your business money on phone systems, collaboration apps, and more, but how do you make the case for your business? Calculating the ROI of unified communications can be difficult, as almost all UC solutions are unique and tailored to your company. But with a few tips, it’s easy to see for yourself how unified communications is just good for business:
1. Take stock of your current tools
The first step to calculating the ROI of deploying a unified communications platform in your business is figuring out what would be replaced. Ask yourself a few questions:
- What communication tools do my employees and I use the most?
- Am I satisfied with these channels, or could they be doing more?
- Where are there gaps in communication?
- Is time wasted waiting or looking for information from others?
If you can identify what communications systems are already working, as well as what could be improved, you can make knowledgeable and strategic decisions as to which unified communications tools you want to set up in your workplace, which in turn allows for a better ROI by not paying for redundant tools or fluff that you won’t use.
2. Calculate total cost of UC for one year
Once you’ve determined what it is that you will be getting from deploying unified communications, the next step is to come up with an estimate of how much UC will cost you for your first year. Include costs such as the installation and configuration of a better internet connection, purchasing handsets for VoIP communications, software licensing, and a monthly estimated bill from your UC provider. Monthly bills for hosted VoIP and unified communications as a service (UCaaS) are usually dependent upon the number of users, so use your projected number of employees for the year in determining this cost.
Your provider should be able to work with you on calculating your first-year cost, and keep in mind, many costs like handsets and routers are infrequent purchases, likely making your first year the most expensive of any deployment.
3. Figure out your hard savings
Hard savings are any savings that you can quantify with a dollar amount. For example, using VoIP communications instead of a landline phone system saves you money when you no longer need a technician to come to the office to perform maintenance on switchboards and phone lines. Things like lower monthly bills on phone service and long distance calling, lower IT maintenance and infrastructure costs, reduced need for business travel, and getting rid of redundant communication channels are all hard savings. Once you have your total hard savings and estimated cost for your first year, divide savings by cost, then multiply by 100 to find a basic percentage ROI.
4. Factor in your soft savings
Soft savings are a little harder to calculate, since they include things like greater employee productivity and empowerment, or increased customer satisfaction with service and response times. These costs can be calculated if you’re looking to put together a report on the ROI of your UC system, but if you’re trying to determine whether or not it’s worth it to make the switch, just keep them in mind as drivers of your business’s bottom line.
5. Calculate by department
For larger enterprises and companies, it can be helpful to break down ROI calculations by department. A sales department is likely going to use communications technology very differently from an IT department, and the ROI is going to look very different based on applications and responsibilities.
Want some help calculating the ROI of a unified communications solution for your company? Let us know! We’d be happy to help.