A couple of weeks ago I did a piece exploring Plum’s hosted interactive voice response (IVR) solutions, which are hosted in the cloud. The Cloud is generally thought to be the greenest way companies can both store data and utilize programs. Cloud computing reduces energy use and carbon emissions.
Hosted IVR systems share these similarities with other cloud programs and are increasingly becoming the green option for customers utilizing IVR systems. When customers choose to utilize a hosted solution, they are integrating with applications built on a VoiceXML platform and hosting their data in physical data centers around both the U.S. and Europe.
So how exactly is this a greener option than an onsite system? Building and executing an IVR application requires setting up infrastructure that requires physical resources and energy to power. When customers choose to go with a hosted solution, they effectively reduce or eliminate the problem of the over-allocation of infrastructure by having all of their infrastructure and capacity located in one place. This minimizes the risk of over-allocation by allowing their solution to utilize only the resources that are required for actual usage, thus eliminating an over-production and unnecessary usage of energy-consuming resources.
Companies that utilize onsite systems often require multiple system configurations in multiple locations to ensure redundancy. These configurations require hardware and energy to power, and when there are multiple systems in multiple locations, it only serves to exacerbate energy output and demands much additional infrastructure to be used.
The resources required to power onsite systems are much greater than those used in IVR hosting. Utilizing a hosted solution means that customers are employing resources that are already in place, with no need to purchase or build more. Hosting centers are equipped with all of the software, infrastructure and port capacity that a client would need. Furthermore, it is hosted at one site, with redundancy ensured in part because of the technological capacity of the center itself. Hosted clients need not worry about scattered equipment and technology. Customers using onsite instead of hosted systems are basically just duplicating what already exists, which is environmentally and fiscally inefficient.
Fault tolerance, 24/7 uptime, redundancy and port capacity are characteristics that are intimately important to those utilizing an enterprise-level IVR set up. Hosted IVR applications offer all of these features and improve data-center efficiency because they are overhead functions performed and executed for every application. Because these functions are performed for a large number of applications, they are optimized for efficiency and reduce power and energy required.
Additionally, large hosted server deployments mean that infrastructure is serving multiple tenants and can efficiently balance storage loads efficiently at the physical server location. This means that the systems can be operated at higher utilization rates, meaning that the system is functioning more productively and efficiently, wasting less energy and serving more clients.
Essentially, hosted IVR applications are greener because they allow many companies to power hundreds (or even thousands) of IVR applications utilizing the resources of one hosting environment. Plum’s hosting and data centers are equipped with the capability to power thousands of enterprise-level applications in one place, promoting efficiency and preserving the environment!