Over the last two decades, I’ve watched as the digital revolution has affected almost every aspect of our society, culture, and economy. The workplace has been no exception to these changes. A recent survey by PWC solidifies what I’ve been predicting for years: The future of work is increasingly flexible and location-independent, with 83% of employees supporting working from home at least one day a week, and a clear majority of employers anticipating that change for their business.
Remote work is powered by technology partners that provide Unified Communications and Collaboration (UC&C) tools. I purposefully use the word “partner” because I believe businesses fundamentally rely on these products and services to operate and stay competitive. As opposed to “company” or “vendor”, UC&C is vital enough to earn partner status, considering we essentially become an extension of your IT team, and are integral to enable your critical business communications.
Everyone knows the foundation of every good partnership is trust. But with so many potential UC&C partners to choose from, how do you know whom to trust?
I’ve worked in the telecom industry for over 25 years. 20 of them have been with TELUS. I’ve helped guide mergers, acquisitions and partnerships of all kinds. That has required me to do lots of research. I expect every company looking for a UC&C partner to do their due diligence as well, and part of that means taking the time to fully understand the potential value a prospect can bring to your organization. That is why I’ve taken the time to create this overview of what TELUS brings to the table, so you know what you can expect from a TELUS UC&C partnership.
Ranked #1 for a reason
I’m just going to come out and say it: TELUS is the #1 trusted provider of UC&C (cloud phone systems) solutions in Canada based on number of seats / users, according to Canadian telecommunications research firm NBI Michael Sone.
I’ve seen first-hand the tremendous effort that went into earning this distinction, and it’s one of the many reasons I’m proud to work at TELUS.
Rankings like this can sometimes erase the larger story by reducing it down to a number. To me, what’s more interesting is how we got here. If you want to know who is trustworthy, credibility is built on a history of success.
TELUS has a long history, stretching from our public utility roots, all the way to becoming a publicly traded, growth-oriented company focused on unifying business communications. In the early 2000’s we solidified our position as a national mobility player when we acquired Clearnet Communications. A few years later, we became the first communications company in North America to transform our traditional circuit-based infrastructure into a leading-edge Next Generation Network (NGN). This provided new capabilities and advantages to our customers including the first carrier-grade cloud-managed Internet Protocol (IP) telephony service in Canada. To put it simply, a lot has changed since these early days, but we’ve continued to evolve as we seek out partners in our ecosystem that share our passion for innovation; together we deliver our customers the best solutions possible.
But despite the massive changes brought about by the digital revolution, our recent growth, and our partnerships, TELUS has been guided by one core mission.
Way back in 2000, when I started at TELUS, our intent was to unleash the power of the internet to deliver the best solutions to Canadians at home, in the workplace, and on the move. It’s just as relevant today as it was 20 years ago. It’s really been a unifying goal across TELUS.
In short, TELUS is continually renewing itself by looking towards the future and staying true to our values. We embrace new technologies as we expand our services to include a broader set of mobility, internet and business collaboration solutions. That’s why we will continue to rank high.
When you partner with TELUS, you partner with the best. Gone are the days of one-size-fits all products. Other telecoms will contract one vendor for their UC&C product. TELUS works with multiple industry leaders to bring the best service adjusted to your business’s needs.
With regard to our UC&C services, we’ve partnered with Cisco for TELUS Cloud Collaboration, RingCentral for TELUS Business Connect, and Microsoft for Teams, to deliver the highest quality voice, presence and collaboration experience to Canadian businesses. All three of these partners made it onto Gartner’s prestigious Magic Quadrant in 2019 as Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) category leaders.
Being a collaboration solutions provider also means our solutions have to collaborate with other solutions. With many organizations moving to a multi-cloud model, we make sure our solutions integrate with the most trusted partners out there.
Remember, about 70% of the market is still using legacy telephony like analog phone lines and on-site phone systems, and that whole market is destined to be replaced by cloud and next generation collaboration. But that is 70% shrinking quickly due to the litany of benefits of making the switch to UC&C, including support for alternative workstyles and a need for increased flexibility, talent acquisition and expansion, and business continuity. Not to mention the significant cost savings and performance increases. No one wants to be left behind, but you don’t want to jump the gun either. It’s imperative that the right solution fit the needs of your organization. The partner you choose should be able to deliver the highest quality of service. We’re here to make that happen for you.
Full service & support in one stop
If you’ve ever had to juggle multiple vendors before, it’s possible you’ve heard the dreaded phase, “oh, that’s not our problem.” Stop me if this has ever happened to you: There’s a serious issue that needs immediate attention, but you, or someone on your team, ends up spending several hours on hold as each of your vendors take turns blaming one another for the problem. You just want it solved but no one seems to be taking responsibility.
TELUS is a full service provider. Having one reliable partner minimizes the number of calls you need to make if you ever have an issue, and completely avoids falling victim to the “not-our-problem” circle. We’re here to take care of your needs, whatever they are.
This means that we can handle everything from device purchase and setup, to managed Wi-Fi and network connections, bandwidth increases, VPNs and security, and everything in between. With thousands of certified staff trained on our technology to take care of your installations and technical support, your IT team (if you have one) can focus on other projects. And because next generation UC&C is all cloud-based, you’re always getting the latest capabilities, with constant updates included in your monthly fee.
Being a good partner means being a good problem solver. We’ve had to come up with solutions for thousands of different customers. That’s why we’re able to create flexible deployment models to meet the needs of individual organizations. So whether you need to phase out an old system over time, for example, or keep your data within Canadian borders for compliance reasons, we have solutions that fit the diversity of circumstances Canadian businesses find themselves in.
Service reliability and quality
The worst problem you can have with a UC partner is poor reliability. Why? Because those costs add up in uncountable ways. Dropped calls, lag time, spooky echoes, down time, bad technical support: Rightly or wrongly, your customers see this as a reflection of your business. It can mean the difference between not closing a deal or small things like having to reschedule a meeting because you wasted 25 minutes trying to get it started online. Sound familiar?
We’re proud to say that our decades of experience delivering quality voice connections to our customers has led us to become one of the most reliable UC&C providers in Canada. While no network is immune from down time, we’re constantly looking for ways to make our services more robust, with quicker response time should any issues arise.
We have some of the best products out there; we have some of the best channels, and complementary solutions around those products so we can provide an end-to-end solution. Period. Full stop.
But of course, technology doesn’t work without people. And perhaps the single biggest differentiator is also the one that’s hardest to define.
A culture of innovation
You can think all day long about the goals and strategies you want to achieve, but culture determines how people work, interact, and trust one another. If your culture isn’t aligned or leadership stumbles, the world’s smartest business strategy and all the hottest tech in the world won’t be able to save you from yourself.
This is why TELUS has worked so hard over the decades to foster a healthy work culture dedicated to serving customers. When everything in the world seems to be changing so fast, from technology to our competitors, the one thing we can control is the customer experience we provide. I would argue that that’s the only sustainable advantage a business can have, and ultimately that’s where innovation makes the biggest impact.
The TELUS culture is based on four values:
We embrace change and initiate opportunity
We have a passion for growth
We believe in spirited teamwork
We have the courage to innovate
I can attest that the culture within my team, and that of TELUS, under our core values is really of an entrepreneurial nature. Try things quickly. Challenge the norms. Have a passion to understand our customers’ needs. Drive new innovation. Be willing to fail. Pick yourself up and learn. Celebrate and double-down on successes. It’s enabled us to attract some of the best and brightest across the industry that want to be part of a winning team.
TELUS is the number one UC&C provider in the country. We provide full-service that’s focused on your business’s needs. We rely on only the best in the business with products that are compatible with industry leading tools. Our service statistics top the charts and it’s all backed by a constantly innovating customer-first culture. It’s why I’ve been at TELUS for two decades. Here’s to a long-lasting, fruitful partnership!