UCaaS vs. CCaaS: What's Best for Your Business?


In the growing economy of cloud-based services, communication solutions are changing the way that businesses operate, including their options for providing the appropriate resources for their audience. This includes the “as a service” collection of companies and systems designed to make business communications easier. Many of these products are software-based, which is where the use of the cloud comes in. Cloud hosting allows for partnerships and shared communications solutions so that you don’t have to do it on your own. 

Of course, there are several types of “as a service” solutions out there today, so it’s helpful to understand what they offer and which could benefit your business the most. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at UCaaS and CCaaS, including what each offers and how to determine which one best fits your business needs. 

What is UCaaS?

UCaaS stands for Unified Communications as a Service. These vendors offer solutions to help streamline your communication channels, integrate your contacts, and more. They often focus on things like voice, SMS, chat, and conferencing tools to create a single solution. The technical definition says:

“Unified communications as a service (UCaaS) is a cloud-delivered unified communications model that supports six communications functions: enterprise telephony, meetings (audio/video/web conferencing), unified messaging, instant messaging and presence (personal and team), mobility, and communications-enabled business processes.”

Essentially, the providers will provide and maintain the software and interface platform. You won’t have to invest in hardware or more infrastructure because you’ll have all the solutions you need hosted and accessible in the cloud, thanks to the Internet. This offers a better support solution because customers can contact you in their preferred manner

It’s also a better solution for the growing business because it offers a single solution to manage multiple communication streams, living up to the modern world of unified communications across the organization. This is a cost-effective, flexible option that offers improved speed and efficiency. It also creates a better customer experience and can improve your reputation in that regard, as well. 

What is CCaaS?

Contact Center as a Service, or CCaaS, refers to vendors who build products on various APIs and offer them for use (or purchase) to businesses on multiple operating systems and different Internet browsers. The focus here is on customer contacts, and most platforms include a host of solutions to improve communications both for your team and for your audience. 

CCaaS platforms or vendors generally offer things like:

The difference here is that the business will be responsible for utilizing the platform for communications. Unlike UCaaS, you’re also only getting phone call support and solutions when you choose this route. 

It does offer a quicker startup and better value for your money. You will also find plenty of different analytics tools and a variety of features to help you improve your communications. If you’ve got the staff to manage the calls in the first place, this could be the ideal solution. 

How can I choose?

You’re already in a much better position to decide what your business needs, having learned about UCaaS and CCaaS and what they can provide. They both offer a quick, efficient option to improve communications. As mentioned, the biggest difference is that UCaaS comes with vendor support and the opportunity to let them manage communications, while CCaaS just provides you with the platform and tools to manage it yourself. 

Think about what your company needs and what sort of communication solutions would be most effective. Remember that the future of this software and the communications of the modern business are all about being scalable, flexible, and unified to provide the best customer experience across the board. It’s a delicate balancing act, but it’s one that is worth taking the time to figure out. 

UCaaS is targeting businesses who want a comprehensive solution for their communications where they don’t have to manage things or worry about their infrastructure because the provider handles it all. In fact, many companies are upgrading to UCaaS because it offers a total solution for their communications. 

When you’re trying to determine which solutions are best for your business, consider:

  • What kind of assistance you need
  • What you expect from your platform or software
  • Whether you want a team of agents to assist with the process
  • How much you can afford to spend
  • Whether you need a flexible solution that can grow with you
  • What the future of communications looks like for your business
  • What your audience expects or wants from you in this area

It’s not a perfect science and there’s no one right answer for everyone. However, if you take the time to consider these things when shopping for your “as a service” solutions, you’ll be on the right track. Think about which unified communications services or tools will help you achieve the goals you have for your business. If you’re limited on resources, take advantage of the service providers that will also field calls and handle other communication needs for a truly unified solution

Speaking of unified communications, consider a partnership with Smith.ai 

If you’re running a business, do you really want to have to manage every detail of the communications? When you choose to go with a unified solution, you can have a 24/7 answering service at your beck and call, along with a team of virtual receptionists to handle lead intake, scheduling, and other needs. 

Not only that but if you’re still working on the marketing in the first place, ask about our outreach campaigns or how our outbound sales teams can give you a hand. We’ve got plenty of solutions to help you get more out of your business communications and we’ll tie it all together with a tailored strategy to manage every detail. 

To learn more, schedule a consultation to discuss what the 24/7 virtual receptionists at Smith.ai can do for your business communications. You can also reach us at hello@smith.ai or (650) 727-6484. 

Business Education
Written by Sean Lund-Brown

Sean Lund-Brown is a current Marketing Assistant for Smith.ai. A graduate from Metropolitan State University of Denver, Sean graduated with a BA in Music and an individualized degree in Teaching Vocal Pedagogy.

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