Microsoft Lync 2010 Server enables rich presence information across a range of Office applications including Outlook, Office 2010 Suite and Sharepoint. For example; You receive an MS Excel spread sheet from Jim in accounting with the latest budget figures, or an Email from Sue in HR querying your pay arrangements. With MS rich presence, you can see at a glance (actually from within Excel, or Outlook in these cases) whether the sender is online and able to converse. You can then choose to reply via IM or voice if it's an urgent issue, invite them to a conference call or an online meeting.
This simple presence check certainly makes more sense than launching into a lengthy dialog whilst your colleague next-door makes himself a coffee in the kitchen (Status: Away) or sits blissfully unaware with his iPod blasting into his ears (Status: Busy, DND).
In addition to being able to automatically set your presence status based on information in your Outlook calendar, Lync 2010 also allows for the manual setting of presence information. Most Internet travellers would have used some form of IM tool to converse with friends around the corner, or indeed around the world. IM is useful because of it's very nature, the fact that is Instant.
Quite simply, corporate-grade Instant Messaging, like that found in Lync 2010 allows for the secure, rapid exchange of information, with the audit trail typically provided by Email.