How should a cloud migration plan include UC devices, endpoints?

What an organization moves to the cloud will influence UC devices and endpoints. Networking expert Carrie Higbie Goetz explains the factors that influence endpoints in a cloud migration.

Endpoint buying decisions in a cloud migration plan depend on what your organization is putting into the cloud. You could have the entire unified communications platform in the cloud, or any bits and pieces.

Assuming you are hosting your UC application in the cloud, endpoints should be configured to point to the cloud server location. An edge device, such as a phone or laptop, is not concerned with server location as long as it can see the server before any latency timers or time-to-live counters drop packets and can communicate over a shared protocol or gateway.

You will want to evaluate licensing options as part of a cloud migration plan. License agreements can range from per user, per concurrent user, or bundles of 10, 25 or 100 users. Licensing is where the savings can really shine or totally disappear.

You may or may not need to increase your WAN bandwidth to your offices. Some vendors will do a study for you, while others will have a calculator to help you determine the circuit size needed to support your end users. It is beneficial to include information such as the average number of simultaneous calls and peak times for calls in a cloud migration plan. You will have to trust the cloud provider to have the right size of equipment for its facilities. It never hurts to ask who is responsible for the equipment running the cloud. 

Downtime can happen with the cloud, which will affect UC devices and endpoints. Make sure you examine service-level agreements, because some vendors will only offer best-effort service, with no uptime guarantees. Lastly, and maybe most importantly in a cloud migration plan, check customer references. Don't be afraid to seek out references not provided by the vendor. Old press releases are a great way to find current or prior customers. 

Do you have a question for Carrie Higbie Goetz or any other experts? Ask your enterprise-specific questions today! All questions are treated anonymously.

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