25 April 2018
Unified Comms

Skype for Business is increasingly becoming an integral part of business communications. Instant Messaging (IM), conference calls, and availability status ease communication between colleagues and clients.

Whilst Skype for Business on its own is a great product, VIA Hosted Skype for Business expands on this by integrating new features and technologies, taking it to another level to offer a complete Unified Comms as a Service (UCaaS) solution.

Whilst Skype for Business comes free with Office 365, in order to use it as a complete telephony system, you need a Phone System add-on. You will also need a calling plan that provides you with a set number of minutes to use. If you use up these minutes, you have the option of buying more or sacrificing making outbound calls. Whilst there are systems in place to ensure that you don’t exceed your budget, your monthly costs might fluctuate.

VIA simplifies this by having a ‘one-cost for all’ payment model. You will pay one inclusive fee each month for a 30-day rolling contract that includes free calls to UK landlines and mobiles.

Compared with Skype for Business, a Hosted solution provides two main additional features: Premium Customer Service, and the Management Portal.

Customer Service

VIA prides itself on its customer service; one of the company’s core objectives is to ensure that their customer service and communication is considerably better than the rest of the telephony industry. VIA ensures that premium service is built into every step of their solution, offering pre-launch planning, fast implication, and inclusive UK support. VIA also have a financially backed 100% uptime guarantee which they have achieved for four years running.

Management Portal

VIA offer a complete management portal. You’re able to view your accounts and users in one easy-to-use portal. All calls are logged allowing you to keep track of calls per user, per department, or per destination. Further to this, adding users is easy as VIA automatically syncs your users from Azure Active directory which comes as standard within Office 365.

Managing call flows and ring groups is easy with VIA’s unique visual call flow designer and, from an end user perspective, each user can login with their Office 365 single sign-on credentials.

Skype for Business on its own is an excellent product and one that will revolutionise communication for your business. However, VIA takes this one step further and makes a great product better.