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October 24, 2017
(pictured above: Nextiva CEO Tomas Gorny on stage at Nextiva NextCon 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona, Oct. 23.)
NEXTIVA NEXTCON — Nextiva says its long-anticipated communications platform will transform the company into more than just a VoIP provider.
The company announced Monday that select businesses are using its NextOS platform, which seeks to unify the many applications that businesses use. Nextiva made the announcement at its annual NextCon conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, where attendees learned about NextOS for the first time one year ago.
Nextiva’s Tomas Gorny
The offering single brings “fragmented” applications onto a single sign-on platform. The platform’s three main components are nextDB, which captures data; nextIQ, which analyzizes the data; and nextStep, which automates.
Nextiva CEO Tomas Gorny said the launch marks a major shift in the history of the company.
“The launch of the new NextOS platform is significantly more than just a product launch for us here at Nextiva. It marks a new transition from a VoIP company to an all-in-one business and tech company. VoIP is to Nextiva as books were to Amazon in their early days. It is just the starting point,” he said in his keynote speech. “Nextiva is merging and unifying business communication, team collaboration, costumer engagement and analytics on one modern platform. We are tackling the full accountability for the end-to-end customer experience.”
Gorny restated one of Nextiva’s favorite lines: “Business communications is in a state of crisis.”
“The world has shifted dramatically over the last several years, in the way we communicate and collaborate with each other,” he said. “Our customers have brand-new expectations. Knowledge and automation will drive the future. Knowledge comes from data and making sense out of data. Automation will transform how businesses communicate.”
But the drive to become digital and automate doesn’t always achieve its intended purpose. Many companies, Gorny says, create more problems than they actually solve by piling on application after application.
Nextiva’s proposed solution to the problem will be available to all in early 2018. Some of its features include a CRM function, chat, surveys and analytics.
Gorny’s unveiling followed a morning of speakers who talked about customer experience. Nextiva channel chief Ira Feuerstein explained that creating strong customer experiences is the theme of the conference, which is aimed at both Nextiva’s customers and partners.
“You can create a very positive experience for your customers, or you can create a very negative experience for your customers,” Feuerstein said. “And sometimes you even create a negative experience when you’re not even meaning to.”
Brian Solis, principal analyst for the Altimeter Group, said that even digitally focused “innovation” isn’t really innovation unless it is …
… centered around the perspective and convenience of the client.
“Every day we go to work, we are operating in that dated paradigm and trying to push forward, trying to innovate, trying to be relevant for a new era of business. All the while, society keeps pushing forward,” Solis said. “They keep setting new standards. They keep setting new boundaries. The customer has moved so far from the center of what we think matters that even trying isn’t good enough anymore.”
Solis noted some of the seemingly unimportant details that can ruin customer experience. Major turnoffs include a website that doesn’t work on mobile, irrelevant content and inconsistent cross-channel messaging.
Solis also argued that businesses are no longer competing against only those in their vertical. That’s because the businesses that make major transformations change the expectations that people have for all other types of businesses.
“You all compete against Uber. You all compete against AirBnB. You compete against any app or service that gives people an integrated, intuitive, narcissistic experience, because that becomes the standard for how people want to be engaged. That becomes the standard for how people want to be served. ‘Why isn’t there an Uber for my doctor or my dentist or my insurance provider or my bank?’ There will be,” he said.
Read more about:Agents
Senior News Editor, Channel Futures
James Anderson is a news editor for Channel Futures. He interned with Informa while working toward his degree in journalism from Arizona State University, then joined the company after graduating. He writes about SD-WAN, telecom and cablecos, technology services distributors and carriers. He has served as a moderator for multiple panels at Channel Partners events.
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