With the 4th of July holiday upon us we here at RingCentral are excited to spend this 3-day weekend filled with barbecuing, watching fireworks, and spending quality time with friends and family. We are taking advantage of this time to lay back and enjoy a few days soaking up the sun and the red, white and blue. Five of our employees from different departments share their plans for this celebratory day in America and also reflected on some of their favorite holiday memories from past 4th of July weekends.
What are you doing on the Fourth of July?
Picnic Day: Brian Chiosi (Marketing Ops/Demand Generation), is planning on having a picnic with food and a few drinks with friends at San Francisco’s iconic Dolores Park. He then plans to head down to Pier 39 to watch the firework display. He also has plans to see the movie Independence Day 2 at Alamo Drafthouse during the weekend, and will be going to Raven Bar in the city.
Getaway to the Lake: Carolyn Shmunis (Corporate Communications/Social Media), every year she goes to Lake Tahoe for the 4th of July. Growing up she used to go with her family but now she goes with her fiancé and friends. She’ll be staying at a house on the lake in the South Shore for the weekend, boating and barbecuing. Then at night, she’ll be watching the beautiful fireworks show they have on the lake.
Fun-filled: Lovlani Nguyen (Human Resources), on the 4th she is going to have brunch with family in downtown Campbell at a place called Mo’s, then she will head up to San Francisco city at night dressed in her 4th of July gear. She plans on eating dinner at on of her favorite ramen restaurants near Market St., then finishing off the night watching fireworks near Pier 39 and Embarcadero and exploring San Francisco with friends.
Grill & Chill: Deji Odujinrin (Business Services), he also has plans to be staying in a cabin at Lake Tahoe for the whole weekend, hanging out and partying with friends. He’ll be chilling by the lake and grilling good food all weekend long. Later, him and his friends will watch the fireworks near the lake.
Family First: Nimerta Grewal (Customer Marketing), she will be attending a get-together at her parents’ house with the entire family, which for her is around 15-20 people! Her nephews, nieces and younger cousins enjoy swimming in the pool and she likes to join them for some good old-fashioned splashing around. At the house they plan on barbecuing, making jokes, and playing with the dogs. At night they set off fireworks in the cul-de-sac of her neighborhood.
What is your favorite Fourth of July memory?
Brian: My favorite memory is getting pulled by our speedboat while on the flotation device with my cousin. For some reason, I had an uncontrollable laughter the entire time.
Carolyn: Two years ago for the 4th of July in Tahoe, a big group of people (around 20) and I rented a party bus to Zephyr Cove. There were big pool floats on the lake people could sit on. After that, we went to a private beach near the house we were at and saw a firework show with no one around, just our friends.
Lovlani: I was at my friend’s house last 4th of July and she lives in Communication Hills. From there, we watched fireworks at night and were able to see the fireworks for all of the Bay Area because there was such a nice view.
Deji: My favorite 4th of July memory was from when I was younger and lived in Washington DC. One time we were at a park near the Washington Monument and were able to see the fireworks very clearly. All day, there were families grilling at the park and we all stayed until night to watch the fireworks together.
Nimerta: I don’t think I have a particular favorite memory because every 4th of July is great. In general, I enjoy this day off because I can spend the day with my family and it turns into a big event. A few members of my family set off the fireworks and people all around the neighborhood gather around to watch the show.
What is your favorite Fourth of July food?
Carolyn: Corn of the cob, potato salad, and all the BBQ sides.
Lovlani: Hot links and macaroni salad.
Deji: Burgers and hot dogs.
Nimerta: Ribs and Kobe steaks.
So whether it’s staying cool by the lake or traversing around the city, we here at RingCentral wish you the best on this special day. Even during this fun filled holiday, we are still working hard to integrate and simplify your business communications so you can be free to operate your business remotely. Happy Independence Day from the RingCentral Family to yours!
Share your favorite 4th of July memories with us in the comments below.
Publish Date: July 4, 2016 5:00 AM
Every year on the fourth day in July, one nation gathers for a unified anniversary celebration. Grills ignite; fireworks pop and boom in the distance while footballs and cold American beers are tossed around picnic blankets at lake beaches. July Fourth is a day of blissful nostalgia, sensory elation, and warm company, but, above all, it is a day of memorial. Each year, Americans commemorate the day that the founders of the nation gathered together and declared their independence from a system that limited and inhibited their potential to grow and thrive upon their own prowess. The early colonies were under the control of a government that was across an ocean and only had access to very basic forms of communication. The American leadership knew that they didn’t need to be run by a government 3,000 miles away when they could operate themselves more efficiently at the local level. Modern day businesses are similarly burdened by unconnected and outdated structures. No, not by a domineering monocratic authority, rather, a communications structure that is limited and out of date: their phone systems. In recognition of American independence, observe the various ways to become independent from your phone system.
1) Independence from geographical constraints
Although our world can sometimes feel small, as we can travel to almost every part of it in a manner of hours, we must consider how vast this planet is. To run a successful global, or even national, business you must have a seamless and integrated communications platform that can operate quickly and efficiently. Cloud-based communications systems offer release from geographical constraints and boundaries that a physical phone system can tie you to. The ability to access and manage your phone system from any point allows you the freedom to be available to your clients and co-workers even while you’re relaxing on a blanket, watching fireworks in an open field, or roasting marshmallows at the beach. Voice over internet protocol (VoIP) services place all of your contact outlets in the palm of your hand on your preferred mobile devices. Most standard phone system can confine you to your office and leave you with limited access to email or fax (as you likely receive those services through other vendors).
2) Independence from multiple vendors
Dealing with multiple vendors can place unnecessary burden on the modern business. When you switch your company to a cloud-based communications system, the overwhelming stress of having several different vendors performing all of your communication tasks disappears. Instead, when you run your business communications through the cloud, there is no longer a need for multiple providers of different solutions as you now have one provider that does it all. When you’re paying for one service that solves all of your communication needs, you will also simplify your billing, as you no longer have to pay for numerous vendors that offer one service each. You can make your bills more predictable by acquiring your communication outlets through one integrated service.
3) Independence from unpredictable bills
When America was still being formed, the population refused to adhere to taxation without representation. The citizens of the young nation would not tolerate paying for a government that they did not want or need. Cloud-based communications offers independence from unpredictable billing by developing simple and consistent pricing so that you always know what you’re paying for.
This Fourth of July weekend when you’re at a baseball game or waiting to flip the burgers, you can be equipped to run your business right from where you’re standing. When America was founded, it was on the idea that all peoples would have unlimited opportunity and uninhibited potential. Help your business reach its full potential by setting it free from a limited and inhibiting communications platform and incorporate it into a system that will help you and your company grow into the clouds!
How has switching to a cloud phone system helped you gain independence from managing a PBX system? Share your favorite benefits with us in the comments below.
Publish Date: July 1, 2016 5:00 AM
All thanks to the digital marketing age – marketers don’t need to execute marketing strategies blindly anymore. You can measure the metrics and other analytical data in real-time on the go! Every digital marketing tool today comes with some sort of associated metric that can help you in measuring your success.
However, with the easy availability of tools and metrics comes a bigger responsibility. Responsibility to choose the metrics and success measuring tools properly. Marketers can simply end up wasting their time with the wrong choice of metrics. To aid you, we are here with just the right collection of metrics that play an influential role in measuring your growth and revenue generation on the whole.
Traffic Acquisition Metrics
These are the metrics that determine the ways which traffic can be acquired. These metrics are thus mainly measured during the traffic generation stage. These metrics play an important role while working on SEO and PPC campaigns.
1) Click through rate
Pay per click helps you attract the potential traffic in return of a certain amount, and thus the name – Pay Per Click. The best way to figure out the success of your PPC campaign is by tracking the number of clicks your ad received compared to the total number of impressions received. An impression is made every time your ad is viewed. But it is just not about viewing. Your PPC campaign is successful only when your targeted audiences land over the associated landing page. And this is when; click through rate comes into the picture. CTR measures how many people viewed your ad, but in addition, clicked on it.
It goes without saying, the higher the CTR, the better your quality scores are and the lower PPC costs would be. The more the clicks, the higher are your chances to earn pricing discounts from your search engine marketing platform.
2) Cost per Click
Cost per Click, CPC is the cost associated with every click on your PPC ad. CPC is variable and depends on a number of factors. It might vary depending on your keywords – how popular they are, the quality score you have which depends on CTR and the standard prices that your chosen search engine has.
3) New visitors versus returning visitors
This is very useful metric in order to determine the success of your campaign. This serves as a quality parameter and reveals if your ad was luring enough to attract multiple visits. This helps you track how many new visitors are coming to your website day after day, and how many out of them are returning ones. Consider a case when you have a high number of new visitors coming to your website as compared to the previous month. This simply reveals that the new content on your PPC ad is attractive enough to attract audiences, but the rest of the website isn’t performing well enough to lure customers in further in order to make a purchase, or whatever you are dealing with.
User behavior Metrics
So, your PPC ad is done with its part. It brought an appreciable number of users to your website. Now, what? How will you determine the behavior of people after they entered onto your website? Did they make a purchase? After how many seconds (or minutes), did they called it quits? And so on. This is what is revealed by
4) Number of page views
This tells a lot about how many people landed on the page and how many views you received on a particular day. For example, if you changed the PPC ad discount offering the next month and want to calculate how effective the discount was. The best way is to check the page views count that particular ad received. Page views, thus, serve as one of the parameters on which the success of your PPC ad can be determined.
5) Landing page conversion rate
Landing page conversion rate, as the name suggests, studies the effectiveness of your landing page. It reveals the number of customers that were converted into sales or leads from being just site visitors. More the conversion, more the customers and thus better prospects for your business ahead! Click here to find out how you can leverage technology to increase conversion rates by 700%!
6) Bounce rate and exit rate
Let’s face it. Not all visitors who visit your website can be converted into sales. Nor will all remain hooked to your website for a long period of time. There are cases when visitors leave the website as soon as they arrive. Bounce rate is thus a parameter to check how you can provide better experiences to your customers. Bounce rate can be defined as the percentage of visitors who left your website after going through a single page. A high bounce rate is therefore an indication that the landing page was not captivating enough to hold the users for an extended period of time, or convince them to browse further on your website. It thus gives you a chance to make your landing page more effective.
The exit rate, on the other hand, is specific to each page. Exit rate reveals information about the last page your users visited before calling it quits. For example, if your ‘how it works’ page has an exceptionally high exit rate as compared to other pages, it simply means that you’re not connecting well with your audiences.
After Acquisition Metrics
So you have conquered the customer, converted them from a mere visitor to sales, but what did it cost you? What was the exact cost involved in acquiring and retaining a customer? And now that you have acquired the customer, what effect will this have on your business? These are best studied through ‘After Acquisition Metrics’.
7) Cost per customer vs. revenue per customer
This is a simple formula that determines your marketing success. If revenue per visitor is more than the cost per visitor, you are on right track! The greater the output, and lesser the input – it simply means that all your marketing efforts are on track and yielded handsome results.
8) Lead to close ratio
This is another simple metric. You simply need to divide the total number of generated leads by the total number of sales that you did. This greatly defines your sales efficiency.
To sum up, it is wise to understand and take advantage of each of these metrics defined above in order to make your landing page effective. Marketing efforts are nothing without proper tools and metrics that could measure the success. The key here is to make the best use of the extracted data from various metrics and work in the right direction, making the well-informed decisions.
Which of these marketing metrics do you rely on most heavily to evaluate the success of a new marketing campaign or initiative?
Publish Date: June 24, 2016 5:00 AM
You’ve depended on Gmail for your personal email for a long time, and now you’re thinking about setting up Google Apps to support the needs of your business. At the same time, you need a cost-effective and flexible business communications solution. Now there’s a new offering from RingCentral and Google that gives you exactly what you’ve been looking for.
Introducing RingCentral Office® Google Edition
The new offering, RingCentral Office Google Edition, provides a unique and cost-efficient integrated solution for enterprises. Priced at $30 USD per user per month, it includes Google Apps Unlimited with unlimited storage and a new edition of RingCentral Office® that integrates with Google Apps and Google Hangouts. This solution provides much richer and more robust enterprise communication capabilities compared to alternative industry solutions like Skype for Business and Office 365.
Functionality-wise, users will be able to make calls right from their browser, send text messages from their work numbers directly in Google, schedule RingCentral web meetings in Gmail that integrate with Google calendar, and a host of other time-saving tasks that leverage the integration. Essentially, office workers can rely on the solution as a hub for all their business communication.
Meeting the need for a future-proofed solution
At RingCentral, where we provide business cloud communication and collaboration applications, we’ve been excited about the transformational capabilities of the cloud since the earliest days of our business in 1999. Now we’re at a point where we are witnessing business communications fundamentally changing. More and more, businesses are turning away from point solutions and towards a rich, cloud-based ecosystem for getting work done. To meet these emerging and complex needs, cloud providers need to deliver more flexible, robust and cost-efficient solutions than ever before.
As enterprises increasingly employ large, globally distributed workforces, we’re seeing greater reliance on cloud productivity and communications tools like Google Apps and RingCentral Office, respectively. As these efficiency-boosting tools become the norm, business workers expect the technologies available to them both to work together seamlessly and to fit the way they work across all the devices they use—from desktop to tablet to mobile phone. Meanwhile, the enterprises that employ these professionals want to protect their investment with a “future-proofed” solution—a solution that can change as fast as their needs do. This is an important component of what the cloud offers: a platform that is continually enhanced, via software release, to add new features, capabilities and integrations.
Changing the way we work and stay productive
In a recent survey of North American enterprises, 69 percent of companies surveyed placed high importance on the ability to integrate voice with business applications within their UC solutions. More and more, workers want to launch chat, voice and video sessions directly from their email, address books, or other productivity tools.
RingCentral and Google together deliver big benefits to enterprises by equipping workers to do just that. RingCentral Office Google Edition enables them to spend more time communicating with customers and less time toggling between apps, dialing and recording all types of communications into the profile. It eliminates the need for customers to use a separate communications application, instead promoting a holistic cloud solution that adds up to significant productivity gains.
More than five million businesses currently use Google Apps. Together and by leveraging joint channel partnerships, Google and RingCentral will bring a powerful new offering to hundreds of thousands of businesses looking to shift to the cloud.
Google has always embraced the multi-cloud ecosystem in order to bring together best-in-class partners to deliver valuable solutions to businesses. We’re proud to be joining with such a forward-looking and influential partner to enable more enterprises to take advantage of all that the cloud has to offer.
Publish Date: June 22, 2016 5:00 AM
The rapid evolution of the internet has been an enormously powerful business enabler for organizations looking to the global marketplace for growth opportunities. In combination with speedy, reliable and affordable transportation, which has effectively eliminated distance as an obstacle, the internet has made it possible for nearly any company, regardless of size, to market and distribute its products and services internationally.
Beyond dispatching road warriors to sell and service products abroad, it’s made it feasible for companies to establish actual physical presences in international markets in order to be truly local everywhere.
Of course, challenges remain for companies that want to operate on a global scale but feel local in every location.
Topping the list of challenges for many companies is the need for easy to implement and manage, cost-effective, secure, reliable and regulatory compliant business communications systems. Many organizations that have gone global have deployed on-premise PBX systems in each location to connect their global offices and mobile workers worldwide. But installing and managing local, on-premise PBXs is terribly inefficient and quite costly. It requires that organizations piece together global business communications systems by dealing with multiple equipment vendors and carriers, and to negotiate and manage office-based and mobile calling plans in each region.
In the meantime, both company employees and customers who expect a consistent, high-quality voice, messaging and collaboration experience that reinforces the local feel and experience of the company brand regardless of location are often disappointed or frustrated.
Legacy PBX systems, still used by so many companies, were not designed with globalization in mind. As a consequence, instead of delivering the high-quality, local experience employees and customers want, they tend to deliver headaches.
It’s possible, however, for your organization to deliver a local presence on a global scale and eliminate those headaches. The key is to leverage the efficiency, reliability and ubiquity of the cloud.
We built RingCentral Global Office from the ground up to be a single, integrated, feature-rich, cloud communications system. There was never any discussion of a platform other than the cloud. After all, RingCentral was born in the cloud and is a pure cloud business communications solution company.
Our intention in creating RingCentral Global Office was to make your global business communications system as easy to implement and manage, and as reliable and affordable as possible.
Based on customer responses and on comments from industry experts including Gartner*, we feel we’ve succeeded.
I invite you to learn more about RingCentral Global Office and the numerous business benefits it delivers by downloading the business brief: Global Business Communications Made Simple, Reliable, and Affordable.
You’ll see that there’s no longer any reason to be locked in the PBX closet when your business could be soaring in the cloud.
[* Gartner recognized RingCentral as a leader in its Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) Worldwide report published on September 3, 2015. The report states among other things that “RingCentral is one of the largest global UCaaS providers, supporting more than 300,000 companies,” and that “Users report good customer satisfaction.”]
Publish Date: June 16, 2016 5:00 AM
We are pleased to announce our 8.1 update for RingCentral Office! This release brings our customers new capabilities that bolster administrative IT control, enhance workplace mobility and productivity, and broaden global reach.
Flexible and Intuitive Role-Based Access Control
With this release, we’ve introduced the new Roles & Permissions feature for all Office customers to help them enforce their company security policies through flexible role-based access control. The Roles & Permissions feature enables IT administrators to delegate access in select areas of the RingCentral system while still retaining overall control of the system. The feature comes with seven pre-defined out-of-the-box roles that cover most use cases within an organization. Office Premium and Enterprise customers can also customize roles. An administrator can easily create a template that efficiently applies roles among groups of users, departments or locations.
Cost-Effective Hot Desking
To keep pace with a growing trend to adopt shared workspaces, this new Hot Desking feature provides companies with a cost-efficient solution to reduce hardware and facility investment and optimize the usage of phone devices without losing users’ productivity. Hot Desking enables any employee to log in to a shared phone device while keeping his/her own extension profile, configuration and voicemail access. It is ideal for traveling employees visiting remote offices and shifted employees who don’t have dedicated cubicles. Hot Desking is available for Office Premium and Enterprise Edition customers.
Global Business Communications with RingCentral Global Office
We’ve expanded our Global Office services to new countries—Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia and Sweden. Now customers can easily connect their global workforce with a single, secure communications solution. In addition, RingCentral supports affordable international virtual numbers for over 70 countries, so customers can easily expand their local virtual presence without a physical office. The calls can be routed seamlessly to any of the extensions within an organization, or to any phone or mobile device. Customers can also bundle with RingCentral’s international calling credits, a capability that enables making international calls without paying premium international rates. RingCentral Global Office is available for all Office customers with two or more users.
Greater Phone Selection
We’re now offering a select quality yet affordable Polycom VVX 101 and VVX 201 Business Media desk phones among various other RingCentral phone offers. These VVX models provide unsurpassed voice clarity with advanced echo cancellation and background noise suppression. These 1-line and 2-line SIP phones, respectively, are ideal for home office and retail environments.
RingCentral for Desktop – Beyond Softphone
We’ve also introduced a new multiple-way conference call that supports up to seven callers directly from the RingCentral for Desktop app. Users can easily add or disconnect any caller, any time without the need to set up a conference bridge. In addition, users can now manage their calls directly from their Plantronics headsets – answer, mute, hold or terminate calls with just one touch right from the selecting Plantronics headsets. Other enhancements include fax templates, caller ID display and new UI language support.
Stay Connected with RingCentral Mobile App
We continue to provide a better user experience with the RingCentral mobile app. Users can now import personal contacts from RingCentral’s mobile app to RingCentral Cloud and automatically sync across RingCentral apps. Users can also search and connect to a contact with ease from any RingCentral app. Other enhancements include intuitive notifications, voice delay and echo cancellation. The mobile app is free for all RingCentral customers and available to download on the App Store and Google Play.
Let us know what you think of the latest updates in the comments section below or send us a tweet to @RingCentral. You can also contact our sales office to learn more.
Publish Date: June 15, 2016 5:00 AM
Unified communications are gaining more and more ground in the enterprise market as business needs evolve and push unified communications (UC) to the cloud. UCaaS brings more flexibility, enhanced collaboration and greater responsiveness. In this blog, we will explore five things shifting UCaaS needs for the enterprise.
1) A Younger Workforce
The influx of millennials in the workplace and the desire for multi-channel communications is causing UCaaS to thrive. From messaging, team workspaces and screen sharing to video and voice, businesses need to keep the connected workforce more connected. As employees become more and more tech savvy, they want the same level of communication at work that they utilize at home. Enterprises need to be constantly up to date with unified communications in order to attract the right talent. Demands will only continue to grow with a new generation of workers.
2) Collaboration Tools
Cloud-based UC solutions help enhance collaboration between employees and improve productivity within an organization. Data can be shared instantly between employees, across departments and locations. Enterprise-level businesses value consistency throughout an organization. Having the same information accessible by all employees makes it easier for everyone to be on the same page and operate more efficiently, especially when it comes to onboarding, training, product or service launches and company updates.
As each business tries to grow their footprint and reach, UCaaS allows for greater expansion through the cloud. Cloud-based UC lets businesses remain competitive and save on costs for travel and in-person meetings, increasing accessibility and productivity. On-demand access can be available across any device. Connecting through conferencing, messaging, voice and shared workspaces helps employees work in real-time and easily update other systems without business interruptions.
4) Mobile-first Environment
The growing trend of BYOD contributes to the popularity of UCaaS in the enterprise space. Smart devices have replaced traditional computers as the primary means of business communications. Mobile devices now support UC, enabling employees to stay connected anytime, from anywhere. Employees no longer need to be tied to a desk but rather can work on-the-go. Gone are the days of enterprise favoring on-premises UC. Many recognize the demands of mobility – turning your everyday phone into your work phone, having access to desktop platforms that advance productivity and retain efficiency.
5) Video, Video, Video
Video conferencing plays a big role in how companies now conduct business and manage resources. Simple video solutions, like one touch dialing or set up, can reduce travel expenses while increasing productivity. Many enterprises find video conferencing to be an acceptable alternative to in-person meetings especially with features like multichannel capability, HD screens, advanced meeting controls and easy interoperability. Cloud-based solutions eliminate the need for complex hardware and require fewer technical components. In order to be effective, video solutions must be high quality – any lags or intermittent service disrupts productivity.
As communication needs continue to evolve, businesses will invest more into UCaaS solutions. According to Transparency Market Research Report, the global UCaaS market is expected to reach more than $37 billion by 2022. Gaining more and more ground in the enterprise market, many businesses have only scratched the surface of what’s possible with UCaaS. TBI recognizes the changing workforce dynamic and is proud to add RingCentral to our UCaaS portfolio. As an industry leader, RingCentral’s cloud communications platform offers our selling partners the opportunity to meet customers’ conferencing and collaboration demands with best in class integration and features.
Publish Date: June 13, 2016 5:00 AM
Today, we have some exciting news, extending our RingCentral Meetings capabilities beyond smartphones, tablets, and desktops and now adding the support of conference rooms with the introduction of RingCentral Rooms and RingCentral Room Connector.
If you aren’t already familiar with RingCentral Meetings, it’s our popular and powerful conferencing solution that comes with every tier of our flagship offering. Every RingCentral Office end-user is empowered with their own audio conferencing bridge and web meeting capabilities by using RingCentral Meetings. It makes it easy to collaborate with colleagues, project teams, clients and partners from any location through high definition face-to-face online meetings. It allows you to share your screen, websites, or documents using any computer (PC or Mac), tablet (iPad or Android) or smartphone (iPhone or Android).
For organizations that have moved wholeheartedly into the new anywhere, anytime workplace, RingCentral Meetings has been a boon to their productivity, creativity and global reach, all while reducing costs related to travel and the acquisition of stand-alone video and web conferencing services.
The next generation of cloud-based room video conferencing
Now, RingCentral is introducing a next generation cloud-based room video conferencing solution that extends RingCentral Meetings’ capabilities to enterprise conference rooms with HD video, audio and web conferencing.
In a nutshell, RingCentral Rooms is a dedicated, software-based room video conferencing solution that works with off-the-shelf hardware (versus expensive proprietary hardware), and supports up to two monitors or TV screens so participants can see the materials being presented as well as the active speaker and gallery views to experience the feeling of truly being in a meeting together.
RingCentral Rooms was developed to be an affordable, easy-to-use alternative to more costly and cumbersome H.323/SIP-based video conference room systems that require the use of expensive legacy hardware and often the involvement of IT staff to properly configure the systems. RingCentral Rooms is a perfect solution for any size room, from huddle rooms to conference rooms with multiple monitors.
It’s incredibly easy to use, requiring only an iPad to schedule and initiate meetings and featuring touch controls that allow the meeting host to share content, control the camera, mute and unmute the microphone, start and stop video, and invite attendees via email (even in real time during the ongoing meeting). RingCentral Rooms also features seamless calendar integration for scheduling and a very simple click to join feature.
RingCentral Rooms works with your choice of off-the-shelf hardware and it’s so intuitive, IT involvement is not required. RingCentral, in fact, does not sell hardware for RingCentral Rooms. Its system requirements are such that you can simply and affordably purchase any off-the-shelf cameras, speakers, microphone and monitors, as well as an iPad and Mac machine (even a Mac Mini), if you don’t already have most or all of these at your site.
For organizations that have already invested in H.323/SIP conference room systems, RingCentral has developed RingCentral Room Connector, enabling them to connect and collaborate with RingCentral Meetings participants who are joining the conference from their mobile devices, desktop machines and telephones, or other RingCentral Rooms. RingCentral Room Connector is a cloud-based gateway that requires no additional software or hardware to work. Joining a meeting couldn’t be easier. Just dial in the meeting IP address and you’re there.
Both RingCentral Rooms and RingCentral Room Connector work with a wide range of legacy video conference systems including those from Polycom, Cisco, Lifesize, and others.
RingCentral Rooms and RingCentral Room Connector do require modest add-on licenses to your existing RingCentral account, which you can easily add and activate at our online account management site. You can also view and configure all RingCentral Rooms from our online account management site using the Meetings tool.
In today’s global business environment with customers, partners, and colleagues located in multiple locations – it’s essential to have reliable, easy-to-use, high quality video conferencing solutions that allow you work the way you want, on any device you choose. RingCentral is committed to providing these solutions to you and continuously making it better and easier to get work done and communicate more effectively than ever.
To learn more about RingCentral Rooms and RingCentral Room Connector, visit http://www.ringcentral.com/office/features/ringcentral-rooms/overview.html
Publish Date: June 9, 2016 5:00 AM
A Global Turning Point
The market demand for cloud-based business communications has reached a turning point. Now after several years of a gradual shift to the technology, we believe the battle between on-premise vs. cloud phone systems has finally been settled. Industry analysts are no longer questioning IF businesses will move their communications to the cloud, but HOW they can best accomplish that transition. This is the market scenario we envisioned when we launched RingCentral, and it certainly proves we’re on the right path.
The competitive landscape in cloud communications has been heating up recently, with both new and old players looking to position themselves as leaders in the space. It’s no surprise that many on-premise legacy vendors see inevitable disruption to the marketplace and are trying to pivot their own business models to accommodate the cloud. But one fact still holds true: RingCentral is today’s leading, pure-play cloud communications provider.
Accelerating Enterprise Transformation at Scale
Our market success is backed by hard data. Based on our Q1 results for 2016, monthly recurring software subscriptions for RingCentral Office are growing 45% annually. And our upmarket customer segment (which now boasts an average deal size of well over 100 users) has been growing by more than 100% year after year. When you compare these figures to the 25% service revenue growth reported by our nearest competitor in Q1, it’s easy to see that RingCentral is by far today’s fastest growing cloud communications provider.
With a dedicated workforce of more than 2,200 in 7 locations worldwide, we wake up every day with a passion for fulfilling our customers’ needs, implementing go-to-market strategies, and creating innovative, market-leading products.
Our Core Values
We have four core values that make us unique as a company:
Five Undeniable Truths
As we look toward the future, there are several key company beliefs that will continue to shape our product strategy. We believe that:
Enterprise Communications, Advanced
As we continue to expand further into the enterprise, it also creates the right moment for us to refresh our brand. A brand speaks to a company’s purpose and core differentiation. I believe a strong brand is rooted in delivering great products, an amazing customer experience—combined with the powerful stories of how customers are realizing great value. That’s why with our new brand campaign we’re shining a huge spotlight on the growth and success of our customers. For us, it’s always about the customer and enabling their digital workplace transformation so they can work more productively and communicate more efficiently. Our brand campaign, “Enterprise Communications, Advanced” speaks volumes about the journey of how our customers are transcending barriers, and innovating in their own unique ways to drive their own success. Here’s a sampling of our new digital ads that harnesses the story of customers while showcasing the power of the RingCentral platform.
Putting it all together, 2016 is an exciting time for the cloud communications industry. As we accelerate our strategy to expand into the enterprise, grow our indirect channels, double down on the customer experience, and scale globally, it’s even more exciting for RingCentral. The work we do here—advancing enterprise communications—will have great impact and lead the way for global enterprises looking to replace their legacy systems and move to the cloud.
Publish Date: June 9, 2016 5:00 AM
There is no worse frustration than being stifled by legacy technology, cumbersome and slow updates, and expensive maintenance. To make matters even worse, you want to take advantage of the latest capabilities in the cloud, but breaking out of your existing enterprise agreement is next to impossible, without a penalty price to pay.
Many businesses end up settling for less and staying handcuffed to their legacy systems along with the continued capital expense, difficult administrative duties, and lack of easy scalability. Do these drawbacks sound familiar?
Well, we’re doing something about it to help out the thousands of businesses that are ready to say, “Enough is enough.”
Together with Google for Work, we’re making it easier to break out of your existing enterprise agreements. Google is covering the cost of using Google Apps until the existing enterprise agreement runs out. We’re sweetening the deal too. Customers who participate in Google’s offer can benefit from RingCentral’s matching offer. Under this program, our new customers can experience up to six months of RingCentral for Google for Work at no cost.
Do the math. It’s a no brainer way to take advantage of what the cloud offers and experience the extraordinary benefits of Google Apps and RingCentral. If you don’t already know, RingCentral for Google for Work is a trusted solution selected by the Recommended for Google Apps for Work program for high security, reliability, and quality of integration with Google business tools. With this integration, you can experience all the functionality of RingCentral while staying in Gmail – make calls, send an SMS or fax, have a conference call or web meeting – without shifting back and forth between apps.
Joining forces with Google, we’re proud to help the multitude of businesses out there break free for the limitations of legacy technology and be part of a great program to help customers accelerate their move to the cloud, while saving them money and helping them become even more productive.
For more information about RingCentral for Google for Work, and this offer, visit the RingCentral for Google integration overview, and the RingCentral for Google mid-market offer.
Publish Date: June 8, 2016 5:00 AM
Good customer service is no longer just about providing a helpful solution; it’s now also a matter of speed. Response times are now a bigger factor than ever before even when it comes to choosing a new provider. In our age of information where it’s so easy to find new solutions in a few clicks, people are starting to think twice if they don’t get attended to quickly.
Of course, from your point of view, you take customer needs to heart and have pride in your service. It’s just those unscrupulous, money-grabbing companies out there that should be concerned about losing customers, right? Sadly not. The harsh truth is you may not even realise just how many opportunities can slip by you when going about your day-to-day business.
Firstly, there’s your traditional landline, which has always been the cornerstone of business communication. It’s often the first personal touch-point for new clients, from which relationships develop and grow. But what about the calls you miss? You can’t be at your desk all day and simply stepping away from it for a few moments or whenever you have a meeting can lead to an unanswered call and an opportunity missed.
Perhaps you’ve thought about this already and have set up a voicemail system. Good job! But the more missed calls you receive, the more voicemails you’ll have to wade through and the slower your response time will be. There’s little point in getting back to that customer two days after they have moved on to another supplier. But what if there was a simpler way? A system which allows you to access and manage voice messages anytime, anywhere?
Making yourself available to calls even when you are not in the office is key to successful business communication these days. Having a mobile number for people to reach you on is a step in the right direction, but relying on customers to hang up and redial to contact you on a separate mobile number can create a real barrier.
Even if you have an answering system or redirect your calls, there is nothing more frustrating to a customer than being passed from pillar to post, getting left on hold for long periods of time or hearing that infernal busy tone. Ultimately, customers begin to connect the dots of this frustration with your business as a whole and that’s bad reputation that no company needs.
However, with a The phone system is not only the lifeblood of business communications, it also enables your company to strengthen its reputation every time you make it easier for customers to connect to the right person.
Publish Date: June 3, 2016 5:00 AM
I’m not exactly what you’d call a risk taker. However, I once stepped out of my comfort zone and took flying lessons.
I was nervous at the start. But my anxiety was quickly allayed by my flight instructor, whose experience and steady-handed guidance kept me safely aloft through the takeoffs, landings, and occasional turbulence. And when it came time for me to fly solo for the first time, memories of my instructor’s words helped me overcome my anxiety.
I look back on the flight lessons and solo flight as some of my most memorable experiences. By overcoming my trepidation and taking flight, I not only earned my pilot’s license, but I gained an experience of a lifetime and attained a sense of satisfaction that I never would have felt otherwise.
IT leaders I’ve spoken to who are considering a transition from a PBX to a cloud phone system face similar fears. They fret over the perceived risks of making a major change to a fundamental business function.
I tell them that moving to the cloud not only can be a low-risk endeavor, but it can fundamentally transform their business. However, before they depart on this journey, I tell them they need a good instructor.
And when it comes to transitioning to a cloud phone system, a proper partner should help your enterprise through all the stages, from assessment to implementation to training to service and support.
Before my solo flight, I had little inkling of what I would get out of the experience. It’s the same for many companies that aren’t aware of the all the pitfalls and benefits of a cloud system.
But just like my instructor helped me get ready to go solo, your cloud communications partner should start by helping your enterprise understand VoIP technology, assessing your network and making the required configuration changes. Your partner should learn about your company’s requirements early in the process to help avoid potential problems.
Just as importantly, a helpful guide will educate you about the various ways that cloud technology can enhance your business. Your partner should also assign an implementation advisor who will introduce you to the technology and walk you through the steps of a successful deployment.
Down to the last detail
Before I set off on my flight, my instructor worked with me to make sure my plane met all requirements for flight, from checking the flight controls to making sure the flaps were working properly. Similarly, your provider should work with your company to ensure your cloud phone system is ready for action.
Working with your team, your partner must craft a design and implementation test plan that evaluates features and functionality and tests new capabilities. Moving to the installation phase, you need an implementation advisor to guide you through a network-readiness assessment.
Joining the crew
During our lessons, my instructor made sure I was involved in every aspect of the flying experience, guaranteeing I had the knowledge and experience required to take the stick on my own. In the same way, a skilled partner can ensure every employee in a company gets on board when the cloud communications system is launched, by implementing a company-wide rollout methodology. Furthermore, a training program can promote user buy-in by training workers on how to manage their account settings.
After I earned my pilot’s license, I recommended my instructor to many friends; he’s simply the best, I tell them. When picking your partner for your move to the cloud, you should go with the best as well. And as far as cloud phone systems go, RingCentral stands out as the superior choice.
Market research firm Gartner has recognized RingCentral as a leader in its Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS), Worldwide, for RingCentral’s ability to execute and completeness of vision.
To learn more about how RingCentral can help your company make the change to cloud communications, read the white paper, “How to Ensure a Smooth Transition to a Cloud Phone System.”
Publish Date: June 2, 2016 5:00 AM
As your company grows in both size and number of locations, tried-and-true communication methods such as the phone simply aren’t enough. You need to formulate a long-term strategy that embraces the latest technologies to enhance communications across your entire organization.
Many companies have discovered that today’s advanced unified communications as a service (UCaaS) solutions can help. By seamlessly bringing together cloud business phone systems with powerful online meeting and collaboration tools, UCaaS provides a clear pathway to more powerful and productive communications for all.
This may seem perfectly logical and even exciting to IT folk out of the gate. But if your company is considering implementing a UCaaS solution, how do you help team members understand the benefits so they’ll embrace the technology and actually use these tools in their day-to-day work lives? Watch the on-demand webinar Driving UCaaS Adoption Across Your Organization to learn:
The other week I presented on how to drive UCaaS adoption across an organization. Something that really stood out to me was how challenging it can be for IT teams to move a product from the suggested use phase to it actually being a part of your daily effort. The key really is in turning early adopters into your evangelists.
Early adopters are always thinking ahead and not only do they have a natural excitement for product innovation, but they can foresee the value of a new technology. They think of “what if” in positive and progressive terms. Sure, they know there are risks and challenges involved with a new technology, but they are willing to face some challenges to reach the desired goal of being part of a new paradigm. The following are some notable traits related to early adopters:
Watch the webinar Driving UCaaS Adoption Across Your Organization to get more familiar with UCaaS technology. Invite those early adopters you know so together you can begin rallying your team to transition to the future of business communications.
Publish Date: June 1, 2016 5:00 AM
Contact centers are under increasing pressure to uphold compliance regulations. With the customers’ Quality of Service and Service Level Agreements on top of governmental regulations, businesses can find it challenging to maintain compliance in every single required domain of operations. Some might even ask — how bad would it be to oversee some of the regulations and take the risk.
Contact center compliance is an expensive investment. Analysts estimate that companies can collectively account for around $20 billion of compliance spending each year. These can be required by a specific industry or governmental interest (like Freedom of Information Act) or be cross-industry (like PCI Security Standards). And together they amount for a hefty check for a single company with spending on technology, experts, and training for compliance growing each year.
However, the losses from non-compliance are far greater. From a single TCPA violation with a fine of $500 up to a PCI breach that can cost $25,000 per day – business cannot sustain positive financial balance, let alone flourish if these fines are commonplace.
A rundown of all the contact centers standards will make your head spin, with such elegant names, like SEC 17a-4, HIPAA, FDA/21CFRp11 among the many others. That’s why we’ve decided to focus on the three core areas that will enable you to secure compliance.
Storing literally every single interaction you make with a customer is your safety net. Apart from the utility of this data and its various business applications, it ensures that you don’t get sued or have rock-solid evidence of compliance if you do. The Do Not Call or Telemarketing Fraud Prevention Act standards are effectively mediated with this capability. Data storage solution capable of handling massive volumes of data is crucial to this approach, making unlimited data storage a very strong proposition in the current market.
Failure to adhere to the PCI standards is arguably the most costly. There is hardly more sensitive information you will be dealing with than in the Payment Card Industry, with possible exceptions to be medical records and personal information. Heartland Payment Systems, a leading US payment processing provider, felt the damage of non-compliance in 2009, when a data security breach resulted in a total of $170 million lost, an increase in customers churn, stock price fall of 78% and delistment from Visa and MasterCard. PCI compliance could not prevent all of the problems — but it could mitigate nearly all of them.
Finally, despite companies looking for the biggest outreach and hold on to every potential customer – knowing who you definitely should not call is a great way to avoid some of the most common contact center violations — TCPA and National Do Not Call Registry. Having “smart” customer lists, the so-called whitelists and blacklists that are dynamically updating is a lifesaver for many contact centers. This is the first step to targeting marketing. Knowing who not to call can save you more money than getting those extra cold-calls under your belt.
Publish Date: May 31, 2016 5:00 AM
My old car was from 2005, an ancient time before modern infotainment systems became commonplace.
So, over the years, I connected multiple products to the car, including a GPS system, an MP3 player, and a smartphone. After all that, I was able to listen to my music, navigation, and telephone calls while driving. But it was a kludgy system that took time and effort to set up and manage.
More importantly, my patchwork of different mobile technologies didn’t work together. Each device was separate, independent, and unable to communicate with the other parts of the system.
I finally bought a new car with a built-in infotainment system that easily paired with my smartphone. When my phone rings or my navigation system chimes in, my music turns down automatically. Because of this, I’m able to keep my eyes on the road and my hands on the wheel.
Communications traffic jam
Enterprise IT leaders I’ve met face a similar situation with their voice communications systems.
Just as my car was designed prior to the mobile revolution, enterprises’ on-premise PBX hardware is based on technology developed decades before anyone had conceived of modern communications tools. In the same way that I had to add new features to my car in a piecemeal fashion, IT leaders must implement and manage tools in their communications mixes separately. And echoing my struggles to make all the devices in my vehicle work together, enterprises find it difficult or impossible to integrate voice with other modes of communication.
On the road to integrated communications
But just like my car’s infotainment system brought everything together for me, enterprise IT leaders now have a solution to their communications challenges: a cloud phone system. Unlike PBX hardware based on decades-old technology, cloud phone systems are from the same generation as mobile networks, internet-based communications tools, and cloud business apps. This makes cloud phone systems a perfect solution to integrate the range of communications technologies now employed in enterprises.
Getting on the communications superhighway
Today’s mobile workers use multiple devices—including desktops and smartphones—to communicate in a vast variety of ways, such as voice calls, SMS, conferencing, email, and chat. On top of that, employees are working with a range of business apps that add additional communications channels.
However, these devices and applications aren’t integrated with business communications. Communication data is segregated from business-app data, obscuring a comprehensive view of the information flow.
Furthermore, most of these modes of communication require employees to enter data manually to log a conversation. Such log information is isolated from other systems and often is lost or forgotten.
The arrival of enterprise-class cloud communications systems makes it possible to integrate applications and communications into one seamless experience for users. For example, a cloud-based phone dialer, audio conferencing, messaging, and other features can be added to Microsoft Office 365, Google Apps for Work and other services, allowing users to engage in multiple means of communication without exiting their most productive apps.
Cloud communications solutions can take their integration with business apps one step further by being open to developers, partners, and customers. This allows businesses to easily integrate a variety of communications capabilities into their own business software.
Getting in gear
For IT leaders and users, an open cloud communications solution provides a simple and practical way to deliver integrated communications within an enterprise. With their communications problems now in their rear-view mirrors, companies can focus on the journey ahead, with their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel.
To learn more about how a cloud solution can help solve your enterprise’s communications integration problems, see RingCentral’s white paper, “Enabling the New Connected Workspace.”
Publish Date: May 31, 2016 5:00 AM