Tracy Lehmann, Technical Liaison, Contact Center Practice, VOSS Solutions
I have to admit, I was really looking forward to seeing business associates again. It had been far too long! This year, Avaya Engage was held at the Dolphin Hotel at Walt Disneyworld Resort in sunny Orlando, FL. Although the event was relatively small compared to previous years, it felt intimate. The Welcome Party was well attended and, because it was held outside at the Lake Terrace, we actually got to see the smiles on each other’s faces. It was a great way to kick off the conference.
I was lucky enough to attend the conference as part of the Consultants Relations Program and our sessions were well tailored to the group of about 20 attendees.
In all sessions Avaya drove home a few key points:
- Composable Enterprise
- Experience Builders
In a nutshell, composability is a design principle that deals with the inter-relationships of various components. In concept, it allows interoperability between applications that once were segregated. For example, using the “cloud” for IVR services while retaining the on-promise UC and CC solutions. This is very powerful, as it allows customers to migrate to the cloud in a more controlled approach.
A phased migration isn’t the only use case for Composable Enterprise. Legacy technologies almost certainly required that all applications be provided by a single manufacturer. In today’s world, a variety of platforms can be interconnected to provide a solution that meets the needs of the customer.
And then there’s “the cloud.” There are public clouds and private clouds. There are even hybrid clouds and community clouds.
But what exactly IS the cloud? I think Microsoft offers one of the best definitions I’ve read.
“The cloud is not a physical entity, but instead is a vast network of remote servers around the globe which are hooked together and meant to operate as a single ecosystem. These servers are designed to either store and manage data, run applications, or deliver content or a service such as streaming videos, web mail, office productivity software, or social media. Instead of accessing files and data from a local or personal computer, you are accessing them online from any Internet-capable device—the information will be available anywhere you go and anytime you need it.”
(What is the Cloud – Definition | Microsoft Azure)
- A public cloud shares resources and offers services over the internet.
- A private cloud doesn’t share resources, and instead offers services over a private internal network that is typically hosted at the customer’s premise.
- A hybrid cloud is a bit of both public and private clouds, where some services are hosted on a public cloud while others are hosted on a private network.
- A community cloud shares resources, but only between distinct organizations, such as with government institutions, educational entities, etc.
So how can we build a Composable Enterprise? How do we know which type of cloud is the right cloud?
Here’s where the magic happens! Experience Builders are visionaries! Experience Builders look at the opportunities and have a keen sense of how to intertwine the various pieces of a unique environment. If you can dream it, the Experience Builders can help you to implement it.
If I heard “low code no code” once during the conference sessions, I heard it a thousand times! Of course, the idea has been around for a long time – to provide a Graphical User Interface that allows seasoned developers as well as the end user community to efficiently and effectively modify their environment with little or no support. Like VOSS Solutions, Avaya understands the desire for an agile and flexible digital workplace strategy. And Experience Builders can help achieve that strategy.
The Avaya brand
Another key discussion worth sharing was around Avaya’s brand, and whether or not it can/should survive. There was talk amongst some of the attendees that Avaya is viewed as “legacy” and although they most certainly CAN fill the role of true Experience Builders, will the customer base look to them for support? Avaya’s competition is new and young and perceived by many decision makers as “relevant” in today’s market. The competitors understand their audience, and bring a fresh perspective to their contact center approach.
I’m not counting Avaya out just yet, but I do hope they look at their brand and make some strategic changes in an effort to keep existing customers and court new ones. From a software perspective, they are rocking it! AvayaOneCloud offers opportunities for every client, and can now even provide SIP Trunks.
To read more about Avaya’s OneCloud, Composability and Experience Builders, visits their website: Avaya OneCloud | Cloud Collaboration Solutions
Overall, the time I spent at the conference was well worth it. Learning about the Avaya roadmap, participating in interactive discussion and sharing knowledge, and of course catching up and networking with industry peers after such a long time away from live events was wonderful.
Here’s to an exciting year ahead for Avaya and Contact Center Community as a whole!