10 Ways Channel Partners Can Up Their Game in UC

 
 
By Gina Roos  |  Posted 2014-12-31 Email
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Previous
    Understand the Business Drivers
    Next

    Understand the Business Drivers

    45% of businesses do not have an integrated solution for voice, video and data. Among those businesses, only 11% are considering it. To leverage this business opportunity, channel companies need to understand the client's needs on the business side.
  • Previous
    Build Relationships Beyond IT
    Next

    Build Relationships Beyond IT

    89% of IT managers don't see new UC tools as a priority, and do not see a return on their initial investment. Channel companies need to train their sales forces to have more conversations on the business side; otherwise, UC will always be driven by IT departments that don't often think about what the benefits are for the business.
  • Previous
    Making More Than One Use Case
    Next

    Making More Than One Use Case

    58% of employees said they're not consulted on the tool's usefulness post-implementation. One-third don't receive training, and of those who do, 50% said they get less than 30 minutes. Channel companies can broker improved communications between IT and business. Most times, IT and business, such as marketing and sales departments, speak very different languages and have different concerns.
  • Previous
    Setting Up to Succeed
    Next

    Setting Up to Succeed

    77% of employees said their organizations do not consult with them before selecting a new office communications tool. Channel companies can help facilitate a dialogue about the needs of the business and employees in advance so there is a greater chance of success.
  • Previous
    Making the Right Tech Decisions
    Next

    Making the Right Tech Decisions

    72% of employees who are consulted feel their communications tools make them more productive, compared with 54% of those who are not. Channel companies need to dig deeper and take the time to understand what their clients' employees need, how they go about their day-to-day activities, what would make their jobs easier and what tools would make them more productive.
  • Previous
    Driving Higher Usage and Adoption
    Next

    Driving Higher Usage and Adoption

    71% of employees said, at most, they use half of a communications tool's features. It's not a question of rolling out the technology and presenting the features and functionality. Channel companies need to help companies evolve their training for usage and adoption to help employees understand how the technology fits into their day-to-day life.
  • Previous
    Don't Underestimate the Value of Training
    Next

    Don't Underestimate the Value of Training

    38% of employees said they have access to communications tools they don't know how to use and will never use. Channel companies can fill this void by educating the client on what the value is on training from a usage and adoption standpoint. If employees don't get properly trained, they don't adopt, and therefore, companies don't see a return on investment.
  • Previous
    Realistic Expectations
    Next

    Realistic Expectations

    44% of IT managers found it difficult to implement a UC solution. Many IT departments have unrealistic expectations about the technology, and most try to go after best-of-breed solutions and pair together multiple vendors. This results in a big increase in the types of skills they need to implement the solution, along with making ongoing support much harder and very difficult to budget. Channel companies need to start the discovery process around what the business is trying to achieve.
  • Previous
    Building Soft Skills
    Next

    Building Soft Skills

    54% of IT managers said they seek the help of third-party solutions providers for UC implementations. Channel companies need to provide softer, nontraditional skills, such as helping clients determine measurable success of business requirements and objectively evaluate different options available.
  • Previous
    Cradle-to-Grave
    Next

    Cradle-to-Grave

    Four out of five IT managers said less than 25% of support calls are related to malfunctioning communications, while two out of three think UC solutions are easy to manage post-implementation. A channel partner's role goes beyond just getting a UC solution up and running. They should have the skills to help determine the right solution, implement the solution and then manage the solution.
 

There are big opportunities for channel companies in unified communications (UC) and collaboration, according to a recent study conducted by Softchoice, a North American technology solutions and managed services provider. A key finding reveals that 45 percent of organizations do not have an integrated solution for voice, video, and data. Among the 250 IT managers and 750 line-of-business employees surveyed, the study found that the majority of employees aren't involved in decision-making on technology, which has a negative impact on adoption, productivity and job satisfaction, and as a result, IT managers don't see much of a return on the investments on the tools, making them hesitant to invest in new ones. Erika Van Noort, Softchoice's director of consulting, shares her views on several key findings and how channel companies, including resellers and solution and service providers, can help organizations implement UC by first understanding their business needs, and increase their user adoption and usage through better communications and training.

 
 
 
 
 
 
Gina Roos is a business and technology writer who has contributed print and Web articles to leading electronic industry publications. She was Editor-in-Chief at Electronics Sourcing North America, and served as Site Editor for UBM's Green SupplyLine and Electronics Supply & Manufacturing Websites. She also authored the "In the Channel" column, covering the electronics distribution industry for EETimes ProductWeek. Gina was the founder and editor of Electronics Advocate, an online magazine covering design and supply chain issues in the electronics industry. The publication was sold to MMG Publishing UK in 2010. Gina has a degree in journalism.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
 
























 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Thanks for your registration, follow us on our social networks to keep up-to-date