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Has anyone used Unified Communications; what are the pros / cons of your particular vendor?

For example, 8x8, Jive, Aptela, PanTerra, Shoretel;

Experiences? TCO? Pitfalls?

Thanks for the input!



W Lee Penn II
Title: CFO, CCO
Company: Protocol Driven Healthcare Inc
(CFO, CCO, Protocol Driven Healthcare Inc) |

Keith, for a small company where you want the headcount to be focused on the product being developed or sold, UC is great way to offload the headache of administering email and voicemail to experts in the cloud. You may want to add Lightedge Solutions ( to your list. My experience with them is positive. Both implementation and support services are staffed with knowledgable engineers. As a SaaS offering, the fees are a mix of one-time set-up and ongoing subscription both of which are reasonable. The requirement definition step is key; you will need to know in detail exactly what you want in terms of services and features in order to maximize the solution's value to your organization.

Bryan Frey
Title: VP Finance/Corp Controller
(VP Finance/Corp Controller, ) |

Ironically, we have our phones outsourced to Worldsmart/Panterra ( and our email outsourced to Intermedia (, and both provide the full gamut of communications, which typically focuses on email and voice communications. Hmmm, we should probably unify our platforms one of these days, but who has the time! In our defense, they both started out as point solutions and migrated in one another's direction.

I like them both although they have their ups and downs - literally. So the biggest downside is when they go down. It's typically scheduled and they both give us lots of notice, but sometimes it's not so scheduled. Rare, but it happens. Although, and this is a problem with any cloud service, it can be hard to distinguish between the service going down and the internet going down. Our ISP is AT&T and they have been very up and down. When they go down, our email and phones go down. So don't forget about the substrate those services are running on.

Both are good on cost and reasonably easy to use for user configuration and management. Importantly, both have 24/7 customer support. I would rate Worldsmart as a top notch 5/5 customer support, and Intermedia as a 4/5. But both are quite strong. I'd use them again for sure.

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