Modern Ways Of Working
Posted on 31/07/2012
The next generation of ‘tech savvy’ workers are inspiring greater adoption of UC across all areas of the market, opening up new sales doors for resellers. Distributor Nimans notes growing end user expectations based on a ‘need rather than a want’ whilst lower cost of ownership is further driving demand.
“In terms of adoption ultimately it depends on what elements of UC are being talked about,” says Head of System Sales, Paul Burn. “Is there greater adoption of technology at the larger end of the market, then I would say yes because the ROI’s are easier to justify. Is UC growing at the smaller end of the market? Yes because the manufacturers are making the applications more affordable so the ROI messages are filtering further down.
“I think smaller businesses are undoubtedly more aware of the benefits of UC and technology in general. The way we communicate in all parts of our lives is evolving and this has naturally spread into business. The younger generation are used to social media and interacting across computers and devices so when they enter the world of work that’s standard practice on how they communicate. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) to work is another growing trend where workers use their own smartphones or tablets for example throughout the working day, instead of having separate devices.
“People entering the workplace don’t need to be trained on these type of technologies; they expect them because they have been brought up throughout their lives using it. This natural evolution is driving a greater ability for resellers to sell UC.
“As the years go by it will become more and more prevalent as younger people become more senior in business. They expect these technologies, which ultimately will make it easier to sell them. I think affordability and cost justification was the biggest barrier in the past, but that’s not the case today. The boundaries between ‘like to have and need to have’ are blurred because of the efficiencies technology can bring.
“Also the way a business interacts with its own customers will have an impact. If they have customers that communicate in a certain way then that company has to follow suit. So it depends on who your customers’ customers’ are.
“The key question for a reseller is to clarify what is their customer trying to achieve. That should be the fundamental starting point of any sale. Are they swapping a system because it’s too old or broken or do they want to adopt new technologies? From there they can expand out into different types of UC solutions.”
Paul says integration is one of the biggest benefits of UC at the lower end of the market based on the ability to integrate multiple platforms to get the best use of devices, bringing cost and convenience benefits.
He feels an ever-growing plethora of UC enabled products, platforms and technologies, provides resellers with a powerful all-embracing sales solution.
“UC means different things to different people but one thing we should all agree on is how UC can make businesses perform smarter and more efficiently, ensuring people can work much more closely wherever they are. UC brings together the basic building blocks of smartphones, wireless laptops, software and connectivity.”
Paul says UC helps simplify the sales message – providing a convenient all encompassing umbrella for lots of different technologies. He highlighted: “General adoption of UC currently boils down to what we can make work with what, for example if you’ve got an IT platform can you make it seamlessly work with a phone system or can you make a headset work on a computer and a phone. Ultimately it comes down to what a reseller thinks an end user can use to deliver a strong ROI message.”
He emphasised: “I still think personally that the conversations that go on between end users and dealers are the same ones that have always gone on. What do end users need, what do their businesses look like and what benefits can be generated from whatever a reseller has in his kit bag. What they can afford and what they are going to get back from it; these are also important considerations.”
Paul points out: “The way UC is evolving gives a reseller more scope to bring different things under a single banner and sell it as part of a seamless solution as opposed to it being disjointed. Systems, applications and peripherals can be put under one convenient banner in terminology that an IT Manager will appreciate and relate to.
“Sometimes applications are a facilitator. Some end users buy more of the concept and capability than perhaps the product itself. They want to know it does something so that they are protected for the future. They want to know technology is capable of doing multiple things, further down the line. Protection of investment.”