I was reading this article today on WindowsITPro site by B.K. Winstead. He talks about people that claim to be doing Unified Communications are most just piloting it, and most of the deployments are only using a very small percentage of the features of Unifed Communications(UC). His organization is using the Voice Mail part of UC in Exchange 2007, but he knows there is much more that can be done. He mentions how presence is the key to UC. Presence is understanding how people want to communication, what tools do they have like email, voicemail, IM, Chat, Video or other things like Desktop sharing. Presence makes leaving messages a thing of the past.
Then I got to thinking about all the features of UC, and what will be available in next few years in UC. I agree very few companies are using a majority of features available today. Will it be just voice mail? or VOIP or merging of email, voice, text, IM all into one tool? Who knows. I know the average person today has information overload. We have to consolidate, make communcation easy, simple to use and way more efficient.
Is your company trying UC? Are you in a pilot or do you have some pieces of UC deployed? When do you think your organization will have most of the UC features available deployed system wide?
I suggest you go read B.K. Winstead's article or comment here or my main blog over on blogs.technet.com/b/jweston