Unified Communications and New Opportunities for VARs
Clients today want a wide range of easily managed services that provide both breadth and depth of functionality and, increasingly, that include both cloud and mobile tech. This has given rise to an ever-growing Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) market, primarily because UCaaS rolls internet, telephony, web-based and video conferencing, mobile, and email into one centrally managed service. Cloud has changed the game somewhat, however, and that has created new opportunities for value-added resellers (VARs) to serve their clients.
How Does the Market Look Now?
At the moment, what clients are expecting is the same level of seamless integration that they experience in their personal lives. They want everything to just work together, preferably with an intuitive, cross-platform user interface. Thankfully, developments in mobile-centric, cloud-based technologies have made it possible to integrate the various platforms used in unified communications solutions with the cloud services themselves under one central framework, making that sort of seamless management and usage possible.
Doing so adds a certain amount of complexity to the client-facing side of things, creating an opportunity for VARs. Where businesses really need assistance in the current framework is in making sure the functionality and capacity are there for their specific use-cases, as they are needed. Services management is where the value is.
New Offerings Are Evolving
In response to the fact that the modern business environment requires such a varied mixture of technologies and vendors, providers need to maintain flexibility in what they can include in their UC solutions. VARs have to become increasingly creative in the solutions they offer and the ways in which they offer them. One of the more flexible ways in which providers can get creative in this sense is to roll out managed service offerings based around the services they already have available.
This provides revenue opportunities with the products themselves, as well as with the maintenance, management, and servicing of those products. Effectively, this means a VAR might sell a collection of unified communications-related services under a UCaaS umbrella, and then also contract to manage those services for the client, thereby providing a steady revenue stream from that client as well as creating an ongoing, consistent relationship with them.
The trend seems to be pushing towards more and more collaboration tech. Collaboration drives productivity, so anything that makes collaboration easier is on everybody’s hotlist. Cross-platform sharing, as well as telepresence solutions, will become more commonplace. VR is a space that bears watching in the next few years. New VR capabilities are likely to be rolled into many unified communications platforms, allowing for increasingly effective global collaboration.
If you are interested in finding new opportunities to expand your unified communications offerings and better serve your customers, contact us for more information.