July 3, 2020
Avaya also unveiled several new features and capabilities, including tools to help migrate customers more efficiently and effectively.
Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral features voice calls, team messaging, meetings, video conferencing, file sharing and more. It allows workforces to meet, share and collaborate regardless of location.
A lot is riding on its success of the offering. Steve Forcum, Avaya technologist, told us at Avaya Engage that it’s “one of the growth pillars of the company.”
Avaya’s Miles Davis
To get an update on the rollout, we spoke with Miles Davis, vice president of channel sales for Avaya Canada.
Channel Partners: It’s now been three months since general availability started in the United States. What’s the status of that rollout?
Miles Davis: ACO has been ramping well in the United States the past 90 days and alongside the three new territories (United Kingdom, Canada and Australia). Our U.S. customers will benefit from ACO 2.0, which brings a migration tool for legacy systems, new functionality such as park and page, new capabilities on the ACO portal and additional devices.
CP: Can you give some examples of how partners are making use of opportunities associated with it?
MD: Outside of COVID-19, some of the most common features being used are the open integrations (ACO embedded into Salesforce, plugins for Outlook, Google Suite) and the analytics package for end users, which will explain individual call quality and usage in easy to understand terms.
CP: How has COVID-19 impacted the rollout of Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral? Has it helped partners address their customers’ needs during the pandemic?
MD: Timing-wise, the COVID19 pandemic certainly played a part in the launch of Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral. While we would have liked to be more face to face with our master agents and agents in the ramp up … the call for isolation has definitely showcased the flexibility of the solution. Our first example was just as the pandemic forced companies to react quickly over the weekend in early March. One of our partners was able to take a request for a new temporary overflow team of 50 on Thursday, and have it set up and running by the following Monday. And we’ve seen a long list of requests similar to this.
Keep up with the latest developments in how the channel is supporting partners and customers during the COVID-19 crisis.
Now that companies are settling into a rhythm (long-term remote or gradual/partial return), the functionality of the interface is being showcased. Avaya Cloud Office is built for call, meet, message and more; this versus having to toggle between multiple solutions that only cater to one or two UC elements (video calling, messaging only platforms, etc), [saving] hours of productive time a week, which adds up to significant improvements at the company level.
CP: Is the international rollout of Avaya Cloud Office now underway? How is that process going to work?
MD: Later this year will come Ireland, the Netherlands and France. And then …
… continual rollout from there.
CP: How big of an impact has the offering had on Avaya, and its overall business and strategy?
MD: Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral is a core component of the Avaya midmarket strategy and supports large enterprise where public cloud is a fit. With the signing of the Avaya/RingCentral partnership in October 2019, both saw an opportunity to bring their unique strengths to the table to meet market demand that had outpaced what each company could do alone (and many of our competitors continue to struggle with).
CP: What sort of feedback has Avaya received from partners and customers now that Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral has been available and is in use?
MD: As with any new idea, new product, new service that advances the communications industry, the launch of Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral has had some polishing since its beta days in late 2019. Our current customers and partners have been impressed with the flexibility and feature set we’ve been able to bring to market with differentiators through … support services, fully integrated devices (desktop and huddle room for video and conference audio), features like the park and paging brought from IPOffice and migration tools to make the move to cloud quick and painless for our installed base.
Surge in Web Conferencing Investment
Global spending on cloud-based web conferencing is expected to hit $4.1 billion this year, a 55% jump in two years, according to data from LearnBonds.
Virtual meetings have become increasingly popular in recent years to streamline business schedules and cut costs; however, the pandemic prompted a surge in the use of web conferencing platforms with millions working from home.
In 2018, customers spent $2.7 billion worldwide on web conferencing products and services, revealed Statista and Gartner data. Over the next 12 months, this figure jumped 25% to top $3.3 billion. Statistics show workplace restrictions triggered by the pandemic will boost cloud conferencing users throughout 2020. And global spending is growing 25% year-on-year.
“As a result of workers employing remote work practices in response to COVID-19 office closures, there will be some long-term shifts in conferencing solution usage patterns,” said Megan Fernandez, senior principal analyst at Gartner. “Policies established to enable remote work and experience gained with conferencing service usage during the outbreak is anticipated to have a lasting impact on collaboration adoption.”
A TrustRadius survey of software buyers and users in April revealed that despite cutting their overall software spending, two-thirds (67%) of firms around the world increased spending on web conferencing. Collaboration tools ranked as the second-most significant software investment in 2020. Remote desktop tools and security software follow.
TrustRadius says to expect global spending on web conferencing hit $4.8 billion by 2023, a 78% jump from 2018. Furthermore, Gartner predicts that by 2024, just 25% of business meetings will be in person. That’s a 35% drop compared to pre-COVID-19 statistics.
The last three months brought a surge in people using video conferencing apps. That includes a record 62 million downloads globally in the third week of March.
Zoom topped the worldwide charts that month, according to CrunchBase data. Statistics show Google’s Hangouts Meet also saw ,,,
,,, a surge in downloads in Italy, Spain, United States and the United Kingdom.
Microsoft Teams noted significant growth in Italy, France and Spain.
Wildix Unleashes Latest Management System
Wildix, the web-based unified communications and collaboration (UCC) provider, this week released its fifth-generation management system, WMS5.
It aims to close gaps in the digital sales process for partners and enhance the customer experience to increase sales. It leverages the capabilities of browser-based UC to allow users to attract more customers. And it accelerates the customer journey from consideration through purchasing.
Robert Cooper is managing director of Wildix North America. He said WMS5 opens a number of new opportunities for Wildix partners.
Wildix’s Robert Cooper
“First, the number of users supported by the platform has more than doubled, allowing partners to target large enterprise customers,” he said. “It also adds significantly to our value proposition by closing gaps in the digital sales process, increasing the return on investment in Wildix technology. Finally, the platform is easier to implement and manage, saving time and allowing partners to support more customers. With WMS5, Wildix remains committed to our continued 100% channel strategy. Our partners never have to worry about their vendor disrupting their market with direct sales efforts.”
The Wildix platform eliminates the need for a separate webinar hosting platform. It can host webinars with up to 10,000 participants with screen sharing and YouTube videos directly on the platform.
The number of simultaneous calls supported has increased by 150%. Increased communication efficiency results in a 50% reduction in bandwidth requirements, Cooper said.
“WMS5 also offers designed-in security that immunizes the platform from malware attacks and ensures secure data transmission,” Cooper said. “The system includes multiple encryption features turned on by default, prevents users from setting overly simple passwords and prevents attackers from using brute force password attacks.”
UJET, Calabrio Team Up for Contact Center Platform
They will deliver a single cloud offering that combines UJET’s customer support platform with Calabrio’s workforce and customer engagement solutions. The integration offers a cloud contact center platform that is both omnichannel-native and human-centric.
The combination addresses the need for contact centers to rapidly deploy, modernize and decentralize customer support operations. The pandemic accelerated this need.
Vasili Triant is UJET‘s chief business officer. He said the combination will allow channel partners to …
… further address the holistic needs of the enterprise. They can also address the evolving changes they are seeing in the market.
UJET’s Vasili Triant
“Partners can now sell the combination of UJET and Calabrio,” he said. “This will help channel partners create new opportunities as the combination of UJET and Calabrio provides channel partners with a single solution that features out-of-the-box access to all the tools and features needed to deliver unified data and more efficient, intelligent, modern and consistent customer experiences.”
UJET recently closed a large opportunity with the offering, Triant said. The customer wanted both Calabrio and UJET from one provider on a single contract.
“The combination … allows partners to bring together the unique, modern, and smartphone-centric capabilities of UJET together with a leading workforce management (WFM) solution,” he said. “Partners can now leverage both UJET and Calabrio, and bring forward a solution that provides the modern workflows, features and reporting intelligence they need to turn real-time and historical workforce data into actionable plans to better engage agents and customers.”
Calabrio’s recent Evolving World of Work study found the pandemic triggered an even greater demand from customers for expanded channel access beyond voice.
‘”Yet they still expect these digital interactions to be infused with empathy,” said Tom Goodmanson, Calabrio’s president and CEO. “This partnership with UJET provides our customers with the omnichannel center they want, with the motivated agents and rich experiences their customers expect. The scalability of our joint cloud solution allows for quick deployment of remote work models — and it gives our customers precise control over both operating costs and customer satisfaction levels.”
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