‘Mobile will remain the primary tool for business communication’ in 2023 – RingCentral report

A report released by RingCentral reveals seven business communication trends the company expects to emerge in 2023.

The theme of the report shows that the telephone remains the primary communication tool used by businesses.

RingCentral partnered with Ipsos to survey IT decision makers, whose responses informed the report.

Andy Cheng, Content Marketing Manager, RingCentralcommented: “If the past three years have taught us anything, it’s that the way we communicate is critical to business success.

“Our mobile phones are at the center of it all. From discussing a project with a teammate to closing a sale with a big account, companies of all sizes love being on the phone. We have the data to prove it.

“With the help of Ipsos, we recently surveyed more than 350 IT decision makers about how they currently use voice communications in their workflows and what their plans are for the future.”

1. The telephone is the primary business communication tool

Research by RingCentral found that more than 90 percent of respondents said mobile phones are considered their primary communication tool.

The survey found that this is the case for businesses that don’t see the phone as their primary communication channel, with 40 percent saying the phone is one of their primary tools.

The findings back up data from RingCentral’s recent NTT Global Customer Experience Benchmark report, which found that businesses consider telephone or face-to-face communication the preferred method for important business processes.

The report found the following:

  • 71.4% prefer phone or face-to-face communication when dealing with reservations, escalations, and dispute resolution issues.
  • 63.6% prefer telephone or face-to-face outbound sales, and 54.8% prefer inbound sales.
  • 43.6% said they would prefer to handle general customer service issues over the phone or in person.

2. Size doesn’t matter

The report shows that regardless of the size of the business, the phone remains a popular method of communication.

RingCentral’s research found that small businesses (0 to 99 employees) are more likely to say the phone is their primary means of communication.

Large enterprises (1,000 to 9,999) are the next highest group to say that the phone is their primary method of communication.

Overall, 52.1% of the businesses surveyed indicated that the phone is their primary method of communication.

3. Professionals prefer to communicate externally over the phone

RingCentral research shows that most employees prefer to use the phone for internal and external business communications.

Based on survey responses, business leaders prefer to talk on the phone when speaking with individuals rather than groups.

The following stats are from the breakdown reported by RingCentral:

  • Internal call: 73.8%.
  • Internal meeting: 58.6%.
  • External client calls: 82%.
  • External client meetings: 60.8%.
  • External provider calls: 69.6%.
  • External Supplier Meeting: 49%.
  • Outbound customer phone: 63.4%.
  • Inbound customer service: 52.1%.

The report also highlights that more than half of people prefer to use the phone when speaking with team members or customers in meetings.

4. Adoption gap between phone systems

The report highlights that there is still an adoption gap between traditional and cloud phone systems within organizations.

According to the study, traditional solutions are still more popular than cloud systems, with 64.8 percent of employees using a business number on their mobile phone and 50.1 percent using a personal number on their mobile phone for business communications.

More than half of the respondents (53.2%) indicated that their companies use traditional local telephones for business communications.

In contrast, only 30.7 percent of companies use cloud-based phone systems for the same purpose.

RingCentral said they expect adoption to increase over time, especially with the rise of hybrid and remote working.

5. Business Phone Usage Expected to Increase

RingCentral’s research also shows that a significant percentage of companies expect phone use for business purposes to increase in the coming years.

Only 5% of those who participated in the study expected their phone use to decrease.

29% said it would “increase a lot”, 34.1% said it would “increase a little”, and 31% said it would “stay the same”.

6. Businesses need flexible solutions

RingCentral found that businesses want flexibility in phone service, especially for features that can be accessed through multiple devices.

The report shows that most businesses expect employees to be able to make and receive business calls (33.8%) and personal business text messages (30.1%) from their PCs.

Some other popular feature requests include:

  • 27.6% want to be able to record calls on demand and store those recordings in the cloud.
  • 25.9% want bulk SMS for mass marketing and customer service.
  • 25.1% want to easily port their existing phone numbers to a new provider.
  • 23.4% would like to be able to automatically record calls in various business-critical applications.
  • 22.5% were due to visual voicemail and voicemail subscriptions.
  • 22.5% expect customer-facing teams to provide common local, international and toll-free numbers on demand.
  • 16.3% want to send and receive electronic faxes.

7. Businesses plan to use SMS

According to RingCentral research, over 95% of businesses use SMS to some extent.

Nearly a quarter (23.9%) of companies see SMS as their preferred communication tool.

Another 42.5% said SMS was not their primary communication tool, but it was still one of their primary tools.

RingCentral says its research also shows that larger companies are more likely than smaller companies to use SMS as their primary communication tool.

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