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How SIP Is Propping Up Modern Workplace Collaboration

One SIP expert tells us why that is and what SIP can unlock in workplace collaboration.

Moshe Beauford

January 4, 2024

3 Min Read
Modern workplace collaboration with SIP
LHPHH/Shutterstock

Session initiation protocol (SIP), while sounding complex, is frankly straightforward and commonly laced throughout modern workplace collaboration tools.

Chances are if you have made a VoIP call, you have leveraged SIP in some way, shape or form. It's not, however, only for enabling those phone calls. It's also the great enabler of unified communications and modern workplace collaboration, integrating voice, video, chat and other channels into a single platform.

"SIP is not only scalable but is cost-effective, as it leverages existing infrastructure," said Steve Forcum, director of program management at SIPPIO, a company so invested in the protocol that the technology is reflected in its name.

SIP also is secure and facilitates mobility, as those using SIP can seamlessly toggle between devices without getting interrupted. 

If a user wants to switch between a Microsoft Teams call on their computer to their mobile device, SIP is what makes that a reality. 

SIP Unlocks Modern Workplace Collaboration

Forcum calls the protocol a "universal translator," helping make sense in a world where we all speak different languages.

SIPPIO's Steve Forcum

"It helps vendors interact seamlessly without developing customized firmware," the SIPPIO executive shared with Channel Futures.

Related:Why Microsoft Operator Connect Is Hot Right Now

The idea of interoperability, while not novel, is one that companies like Mio have made their entire mission. At its core, the firm enables cross-platform communication across Google Chat, Microsoft Teams, Slack, Webex and Zoom Team Chat.

Others, including GTT Communications, Nextiva, Bandwidth and Twilio, take SIP seriously to facilitate modern workplace collaboration. GTT Communications leverages SIP for Zoom Phone customers so they can "bring their 'own' carrier" (BYOC), letting them obtain global telephone numbers, perform outbound calling and more.

SIP in modern workplace collaboration is not so much about routing anymore, claims Forcum. It comes down to providing value to the channel partner by delivering phone calls into applications such as Microsoft Teams, as well as how it extracts phone calls out of Teams.

The Partner Benefits of SIP in the Modern Workplace

"At the end of the day, the value of SIP within a channel partner community is all the custom stuff you can do with it. But the most considerable benefit appears when talking to customers about collaboration," said Forcum. "In the past, that was about selling unified communications as a service (UCaaS).

"I had to get you to leave what you used to take advantage of what I am proposing," Forcum added. "If you look at the market today, it's about share shifting. In 2020, it was a gold rush for a partner as everybody needed a solution for video calls while working from home."

Related:Microsoft Ignite Brings New Microsoft Teams Features to Collaboration Platform

Forcum reasons that working from home led to a boom in the UCaaS space.

"That is because customers demanded a solution for working from home, leading to massive growth in the area. Three years later, what company doesn't have a video solution?" Forcum said.

All of this leads back to channel partner opportunity. Forcum says partners should lead with a UCaaS offering.

"Or they can integrate the UCaaS offering with what they already have," which is more attractive to companies not looking to do a total rip and replace of its technologies, shared Forcum.

"Too many channel partners see tools like Microsoft Teams as an obstacle to overcome rather than seeing it as an opportunity for them to win by integrating with it and not ignoring it altogether by working around it," he concluded.

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About the Author(s)

Moshe Beauford

Contributing Editor, Channel Futures

Moshe has nearly a decade of expertise reporting on enterprise technology. Within that world, he covers breaking news, artificial intelligence, contact center, unified communications, collaboration, cloud adoption (digital transformation), user/customer experience, hardware/software, etc.

As a contributing editor at Channel Futures, Moshe covers unified communications/collaboration from a channel angle. He formerly served as senior editor at GetVoIP News and as a tech reporter at UC/CX Today.

Moshe also has contributed to Unleash, Workspace-Connect, Paste Magazine, Claims Magazine, Property Casualty 360, the Independent, Gizmodo UK, and ‘CBD Intel.’ In addition to reporting, he spends time DJing electronic music and playing the violin. He resides in Mexico.

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