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AI Provides a 21st Century Update to Unified Communications

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Practical AI Applications in PowerSuite

Workplace Analytics artificial intelligence

It’s hard to talk about the role of new technology without mentioning artificial intelligence (AI). This growing field has implications for many industries, including UC. For years, it’s been increasingly clear that AI/ML will play an essential role in the future of IT. According to Gartner, by 2023, 40% of operations teams will use AI as part of their monitoring toolset. What has not been clear until more recently is how much AI/ML can influence your total cost of ownership (TCO) in the UC space. With the sudden shift to remote work due to COVID-19, now is the time to incorporate AI and machine learning into your IT strategy.

Some specific COVID-19 consequences further catalyze the use of AI/ML. Many IT departments are seeing budget cuts with companies looking to reduce their overall operating costs. At the same time, we expect IT to do more to enable a remote workforce. The number of applications IT is responsible for has increased, along with their corresponding data. With fewer staff members and more data, automation becomes even more valuable, as does AI tooling that can separate meaningful actions from the metaphorical haystack of information.

Here at Unify Square, we invest heavily in the development of AI/ML technology that will power IT departments into the future of unified communications and workstream collaboration. While AI and ML sound great in theory and admittedly, in our marketing language, let’s dive into some real-world examples of where AI within PowerSuite is leading toward big wins for our customers. We already see several tangible examples of our AI/ML efforts: improving the end-user experience, reducing security risk, reducing overall IT costs, lowering TCO, and simplifying provisioning and onboarding of users.

Go Beyond Problem Identification with AI Ops

 

The premise of AI Ops for UC is that UC systems are continuously generating a significant quantity of data. End-user calls produce hundreds of streams, each with their own set of quality metrics. Multiply this across the enterprise, and you’re looking at an overwhelming amount of information. An individual human, no matter their level of UC experience or report writing skills, cannot be expected to process this data and draw actionable for the business.  

UC AI Ops separates the signal from the noise. Using a mixture of algorithms and heuristics, UC AI Ops automatically identifies anomalies and their causes. It can also offer actionable guidance, as seen throughout PowerSuite but especially within Insights Center. Future advances will allow for detection in real-time as well as more advanced predictive analytics.

Need Help?

Don’t go at it alone! If your organization needs help in deploying workstream collaboration tools, Unify Square can help. Our expert consultants can work with you on platform selection and deployment plans to ensure a successful roll-out.

Clean Up Active Directory with Natural Language Processing

For large enterprises, it can be near-impossible to ensure that Active Directory is updated and accurate. One area where there are especially egregious errors is within department names. A large enterprise may have thousands of department names listed, with minor differences between some of them.

Given the importance of departments for PowerSuite functionality, including adoption measures and security risks, Unify Square’s data science team introduced department mapping. Natural language processing powers this feature, which standardizes department names to 16 functional groupings. You can find department standardization in PowerSuite, within the Policy Management dashboard. 

AI to Identify Collaboration Security Risk

Security software often uses AI/ML, but did you know it can also discover risk within workstream collaboration platforms? PowerSuite functionality identifies workspaces within Microsoft Teams that pose an increased collaboration security risk.

Numerous factors contribute to a security risk, with more than 30 different settings in the typical workstream collaboration platform. Locking down every single security-related setting is not desirable from a business perspective. PowerSuite’s AI algorithms identify the workspaces that pose a substantial risk by analyzing a variety of factors rather than dig through to change the settings of individual workspaces. This approach allows IT to take granular control, where it matters most, and not waste time in low-risk areas.

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Take the first steps towards securing your workplace collaboration platform to give you peace of mind with information security in tact.

Pattern Recognition for Toll Fraud Detection

One major UC issue affecting enterprises is toll fraud. Nearly 50% of IT people surveyed said they spent the same or more on investigations and toll fraud interventions versus what they directly lost to fraud itself. Toll fraud presents a prime opportunity for AI/ML pattern recognition, as fraudulent calls differ from those that are legitimate, and this isn’t easy to detect without analyzing vast amounts of data.

Unify Square’s data science team developed a unique algorithm that applies established patterns of fraud across multiple tenants. The algorithm is still being fine-tuned. However, to date, it has already detected more than $440K of toll fraud instances for various PowerSuite customers.

Probability-Driven Workspace Recommendations

We’ve all faced this conundrum: have I added all the right people to this email? Have I invited everyone who needs to be there for this meeting? With workstream collaboration, did I add them all to this workspace? PowerSuite has solved this problem with AI.

Each person has a set of metadata associated with them: the department they belong to, membership to other workspaces, common collaborators, etc. Our AI/ML engine offers probabilistic predictions based on this metadata for which users ought to belong to particular workspaces. Even better, it continues to learn based on whether the receiver chooses to follow the recommendation. As workspaces persist long after emails or meetings, it’s vital to add the right people. It’s even more important to place new employees appropriately, as they can easily be left out.

Continuing Innovation in UC with AI and ML

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) offer unique opportunities for innovation within UC and collaboration. As a field that often deals with significant amounts of data, AI provides a way to analyze information faster. We frequently ask IT to do more with less. AI algorithms allow IT to spend less time finding problems and spend more time solving them. This is why AI is so important here at Unify Square: we want to get IT to actionable insights faster.

Unify Square VP of Consulting Services Alan Shen and VP of Product Development Arun Raghavan got together to discuss where they see AI shaping the future of UC and collaboration as part of our PowerChat webinar series. To learn more about AI/ML in UC, you can view the recording at your leisure.

Are you interested in seeing the power of AI in action? PowerSuite incorporates many powerful aspects of AI to monitor, analyze, and secure UC and collaboration environments. Get a personalized demo today!

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