What is happening in the collaboration market?

Managing Director of AV Services Graham Fry discusses the business requirements influencing the trends in the collaboration market. Collaboration is all anyone speaks about at the moment and leadership teams across the world are searching for answers to: “How do we enable our people to work collaboratively?” Businesses are under pressure to outperform competitors and there’s a concentrated effort to use technology to raise productivity and accelerate decision-making. How this manifests itself depends on each individual company. For some, it’s unified collaboration solutions, visual communications or innovative digital signage. For others, it’s more practical applications – office space is still at a premium so it could be an integrated room booking solution. Amid this collective drive, the following trends come up repeatedly.

  • There’s not a single business out there avoiding the relentless march of technology
  • Solutions need to look professional, be simple to use and be robustly reliable
  • Delivering technology is the easy part, seamless integration is where the challenge lies
  • Monitoring is the secret sauce behind reliability
  • Aftercare shouldn’t be an afterthought

These trends in turn relate to cloud maturity and ‘as-a-Service’. Let’s look at cloud maturity first. AV and video conferencing are no longer a standalone investment; it’s now a core component of wider unified communications and cloud initiatives. This is in part due to changing responsibilities within IT departments and the fact businesses have become more readily accepting of cloud thanks to:

  • Improvements in network delivery
  • Software defined network security’s effectiveness
  • The fact many vendors have stepped up their own security credentials

These developments have enabled organisations to progress with their cloud plans. Better system reliability has driven collaboration forward too, as have aftercare services. Companies are moving away from break/fix maintenance strategies – nowadays it’s more about monitoring and proactive maintenance with cloud solutions pushing updates to avoid downtime. Essentially, businesses want unified support – one number to call, but a worldwide network to deliver essential services. Customer success strategies are key to increasing adoption rates, raising user proficiency and unlocking the full features and benefits of a service. Our long-term strategy of providing these outcomes is paying off, along with our customer success programmes and ensuring clients stay happy. We’re also able to easily switch unhappy customers from sub-standard providers. Simplicity undoubtedly remains key to all new solutions, and while users should feel comfortable walking into a room and using new technology, after-sales training is important to breed confidence, drive user adoption, and to maximise systems and their capabilities. That’s how you enable people to work collaboratively. For more information on our AV Services please click here.

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