As we sit here in the midst of ever worsening economic news, you have to wonder what’s going to happen in our industry. We want to believe that we are all going to thrive, not just survive. We’re going to destroy our competition….well, you never know, but we have been focusing on some technologies that have driven us to start looking for new hires.
Do you know there’s something like 15,000 Cisco Unified Communications installs in Florida…and 95% of them are version 4 or older (version 7 was just released if you haven’t been keeping up).
These days, if you are in IT, you really need to focus on things that either drive down costs or boost productivity. Here’s a few “customer productivity” features that our customers are seeing with their upgrades (these are all version 6 and 7 features):
Upgraded Cisco Unified Personal Communicator – IM, presence, video, click to call, and web conferencing.
Unified Presence – Know who is available and how best to reach them. Cisco has some new plans for cross platform enterprise presence coming as an add-on in the near future. (I think this means that you’ll be able to IM people using AIM, Yahoo, or other IM clients outside of the internal organization through the Cisco UC system.)
Mobility – Single number reach plus dual mode. One number to call and one messaging system.
Visual Voice Mail – simplified message management.
Rich media conferencing – we use this all the time and it really makes a difference on an everyday basis to be able to use video to connect face-to-face. Easy to use web collaboration is a huge timesaver. I did a collaboration this afternoon on a proposal that would have taken until next week to complete if I hadn’t done it online with my Cisco rep. We worked it out in 20 minutes online.
Other cool stuff:
Expert Agent – Cisco has really leveraged presence and the Unified Call Center platform to help customers build a customer service delivery platform that leverages knowledge worker in customer interactions. You need to see a demonstration.
Unified Communications Widgets – The application integration continues to improve.
Want to know the best part about all of the above new features? You get it all for free if you’ve kept up your support contract. It’s the easiest cost justification out there! Our project teams are booked solid for the next couple of months – if you know Cisco implementation, we are hiring….
If you know of other technologies with a huge ROI, please comment!