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UCaaS providers continue to compete on delivery of out-the box third-party integrations but will also provide low or no-code bespoke integrations through increasingly mature open-API and webhook infrastructure.
This will continue to blur the lines between UCaaS and CPaaS (Communications Platform as a Service) vendors, with leading solutions meeting the needs of a growing number of businesses with bespoke communications requirements and more cloud applications being utilised than ever before.


The importance of third-party integrations

Integrations play a pivotal role in the realm of Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS), and their importance cannot be overstated.
UCaaS refers to the delivery of communication and collaboration services, such as voice, video, messaging, and conferencing, through the cloud. Integrations act as the glue that connects various applications and systems, allowing organizations to streamline their communication workflows and enhance productivity.
Here’s why integrations are crucial for UCaaS:


Seamless Collaboration: Integrations enable seamless collaboration by connecting UCaaS platforms with other business tools, such as customer relationship management (CRM) systems, project management software, and email platforms. This integration ensures that communication channels and data are synchronized across multiple applications, enabling employees to work together more efficiently.
Enhanced Productivity: Integrating UCaaS with other business applications eliminates the need for manual data entry and enables automation. For example, integrating UCaaS with a CRM system allows call data and customer information to be automatically logged, saving time and reducing the chance of errors. This automation boosts productivity and frees up employees to focus on more value-added tasks.
Improved Customer Experience: Integrating UCaaS with customer-facing applications, such as helpdesk systems or e-commerce platforms, empowers businesses to provide a superior customer experience. It enables features like click-to-call, screen sharing, and instant messaging directly within customer support or sales applications, leading to faster response times and more personalized interactions.
Flexibility and Scalability: Integrations offer flexibility and scalability in UCaaS deployments. Organizations can choose and combine the applications and services that best meet their specific needs, allowing them to build a tailored communication ecosystem. As business requirements change and grow, integrations can be easily adjusted or expanded to accommodate new tools or technologies.
Data-Driven Insights: Integrations enable the collection and analysis of unified data from various sources. By integrating UCaaS with analytics platforms or business intelligence tools, organizations can gain valuable insights into communication patterns, customer behaviour, and performance metrics. These insights drive informed decision-making and help optimize processes for better outcomes.


The case for incorporating APIs

An API, or Application Programming Interface is a software interface that allows software platforms to communicate with other services. If a user interface is the front end of a software platform, allowing users to interact with and operate the system, the APIs used by a solution are designed only to allow developers to connect services together more easily.
According to Google’s 2022 study into API usage within technology businesses, “APIs are the driving force behind digital business ecosystems that encompass a network of partners, developers, and customers facilitated by modern, cloud-first technologies”.
APIs are critical to business digital transformation projects and the effective development of mobile applications because they cut the time and cost of the development process, the delivery of new solutions to customers, and the maintenance of SaaS products.
In the case of UCaaS, providing open-APIs to partners and customers allows them to create their own, bespoke features more easily, or make platform customisations that more effectively meet their needs without having to restructure internal systems.
For instance, maybe a customer requires data to feed into a third-party wallboard – they might use an API to extract call queue information such as wait times, call volumes, abandonment rate, and so on. The use of API calls enables them to build integrations with a far more granular level of control than a standard out-the-box integration.


Not all integrations are created equal

According to research by Verified Market Research, IT and Telecoms will be the fastest growing industries for usage of Open APIs, as they have been for several years. They say that “Telecom companies are increasingly adopting public APIs” to win business and acquire customers. They comment that it is an industry which relies on adoption of new technology to maintain a competitive edge.
We believe there will be a rise in the maturity of API frameworks in the industry, allowing for deeper integrations that also incorporate webhooks to deliver asynchronous interactions between platforms.
The difference between APIs and webhooks is that the former works on request-based mechanisms, the latter works on event-based outputs. Webhooks are user-defined HTTP call-backs that are triggered by specific events.
Whenever that event occurs in the source location, the webhook sees the event, collects the data, and sends it to the URL specified by you in the form of an HTTP request, allowing the user to configure an event in one site to trigger an action in another site.
For a UCaaS customer this means they might be able to receive up-to-the-minute notifications on events such as calls beginning and ending, new incoming calls being received, or new voicemails being delivered.
This kind of requested data can then be pushed to third-party systems or web applications without the need for that system to ‘request’ the information via API.
We believe that within the industry this will see both established vendors and challenger brands adopt increasingly mature Open API frameworks that no longer rely simply on RESTful APIs but incorporate webhooks to provide event-driven exchanges that will evolve expectations on the levels of integration available to UCaaS customers. This is also a central premise to the roadmap of the TelcoSwitch product portfolio in 2023 and beyond.


How are we incorporating APIs and Webhooks in our strategy?

Our new CallSwitch One platform offers the ultimate integration toolkit, with a comprehensive Open-API and webhook library, allowing our partners and their customers to build bespoke features, integrations, or simply tweak existing CallSwitch One features to support specific requirements.
Easily extract call data to build customised wallboards, incorporate routing from our cloud-PBX into existing applications, or build your own applications and services from scratch – your imagination is the only limitation.
Just some of the API commands available within the platform:
  • Manage audio files and Music on Hold playlists
  • Set call routing and call forwarding for your phone numbers.
  • Schedule operating hours for numbers
  • View call costs, call recordings and CDR data
  • Manage short codes that work with your VoIP phone devices
  • View caller identification and make requests for alternative caller IDs
  • Add and manage SIP trunks to connect CallSwitch One to any platform
  • Create Wallboards for users aggregated as daily, weekly, or monthly statistics
  • View provisioned VoIP phone devices on your account
  • Create queue groups, request stats such as people in queue or average wait time.
  • Store contacts and their phone numbers/email addresses
  • Create, view, and manage speed dials
  • Send and receive SMS messages from your numbers


This is, of course, alongside a range of out-the-box integrations available within the platform with leading software solutions including CRM platforms, collaboration and productivity tools, cloud storage providers, compliance call recording systems, and more.


Learn more about the integrations and API toolkit offered by our new channel-focused communications platform, CallSwitch One. Contact us today.
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