Transitioning to a new communication platform is rarely simple or easy. And make no mistake, whether you are planning a migration to a cloud platform from an existing premise solution provided by the same vendor, you are switching to a new platform. It may seem like switching from solutions from the same vendor should be easier, but the technologies used are separate and distinct. There is no magic button to press. My recommendation is to treat it just like implementing any new platform.
Here are a few suggestions that can help to make your move to a cloud platform a success:
Treat this migration as a new implementation – take advantage of this opportunity to take a fresh look at what you are doing as an organization to communicate both internally and externally. Does it make sense? Does it meet the needs of your customers and employees? Are there better ways to do things? Is there new technology or processes that you can take advantage of? Might it be time for a call flow refresh?
Assume that your new platform will work differently than the one your currently use – avoid trying to fit what you do today into the new platform. That’s why you are switching after all, to do things in a better and more modern way! There will be cases where your new solution can do things differently and better than your current platform. But it is also important to accept that there will be cases where you just don’t like the new way of doing things… or can’t do something you do today in exactly the same way that you used to be able to.
Embrace new technology – this is really an example of the previous point. Perhaps you have a very nice, very expensive phone sitting on your desk today (and you like it). But with a modern communications platform, do you really need it? With newer technologies like WebRTC softphones that are built right into the platform, deployment can be a LOT simpler. It requires adapting to a new way of doing things but will make your life easier in the long run.
Document, document, document – one of the most challenging aspects of migrating from one platform to another is understanding what is being done today. The individuals that created call flows, integrations, etc. may no longer be with the organization and may not have left good documentation for what was built, why, and how it works. Take this migration as an opportunity to clearly document processes and important technical details that will help you down the road.
Own the platform – become your own best friend by investing the time to learn your new cloud solution inside and out. The more familiar you are with how to configure and maintain your platform, the more you will be able to accomplish on your own, and the more help you will be in troubleshooting when problems show up… and they will.
Test, test, test – your go live on a new cloud solution will be the smoothest when you have thoroughly tested everything that has been built and configured. Have business units go through all of the use cases they have for how they do business. This includes going through communication flows from both the customer and agent perspectives, managing agents and queues, gathering reporting data, making administrative changes, and much more.