Exploding interest in visual communications is accelerating user adoption maturity and speeding up the drive to connect seamlessly to a broadening variety of environments which range from the corporate office, B2B, home and mobile users and even consumers. As a result, the technology is fast becoming a top priority for IT departments. That’s because businesses – particularly global organisations - realise that visual communication strategies are imperative to cut costs and improve their sustainability.
Terry Dwyer, Dimension Data Director, Visual Communications says, “Organisations are also realising that they will require the support of a partner that can ensure not only the smooth and efficient adoption of services, but also a return on their investment. In fact user adoption and usage is the number one challenge facing organisations that have invested in video systems.
“If video doesn’t work within what we call the ‘golden two minutes’ – whether it’s a problem with the technology; poor quality calls; the user isn’t sure how to operate the technology; or a technical issue is not quickly solved - then employees are likely to revert to an alternative method of communication which is usually the telephone, and they probably won’t try it again. And if employees don’t use it, then their colleagues or clients won’t either. Consequently the business as a whole will not derive the benefits for which the technology was purchased to deliver,” he explains.
Dwyer says that organisations need an effective management solution otherwise their IT departments will struggle to keep up with patches and upgrades, and thus return on investment will be unquantifiable.
“Just keeping the lights on with video requires massive investments in the necessary management platforms, systems, expertise and experience. While it’s possible for organisations to handle video
in-house, it’s very costly, time consuming, and extremely burdensome for companies that don’t manage video as a business.”
Launched today, Dimension Data’s Managed Service for Visual Communications is believed to be the world’s first truly global service as it takes the headache out of video management because it’s focused on maximising end-user adoption and consequently return on investment.
Robert Weddepohl, General Manager, Converged Communications for Dimension Data Australia said: “We are very excited to be launching Dimension Data’s global MSVC service in Australia. The MSVC service is a strong complement to our existing Visual Communications portfolio of solutions. We will now be able to offer a cost effective 24-hour dedicated video help desk service specialising in ensuring the end user has the best visual communications experience every time they make a video call. No more waiting on general IT helpdesk support. Dimension Data video specialists will respond immediately to any conferencing request made by the “non-technical” end user.”
Dwyer added: “In the past 18 months, we’ve seen a dramatic rise in interest in video in general. Many of our clients are re-evaluating their video strategies and beginning to plan and deploy large-scale visual communications strategies. However they want a single provider to support their needs globally. We thus made the decision to invest in and expand in order to support video globally, since we already had the global footprint, and the services and certifications to support our clients.
“With Managed Services for Visual Communications, our clients can now offload their entire video estate to Dimension Data to manage, rather than use multiple small, local AV companies,” said Dwyer.
Research carried out in 2010 by Dimension Data among 809 US-based respondents revealed that most organisations (66.6%) are choosing to manage video on-premise, with 18.9% going the hosted
off-premise route, and 14.6% owned on-premise platform.
Furthermore, many are investing without a strategic roadmap. A startling 49% of those organisation polled said that they have no plan, 41% said they have a plan, with the balance (10%) saying that they were investigating the options for deploying video in a UC framework for ubiquitous deployments.
When asked what challenges they expected to face if their company implemented visual communications, 57.0% of the 809 organisations said cost justification; 55.7% said budget, 43.5% said user adoptions, and a whopping 62.5% said bandwidth. Other reasons included executive support (27/1%); IT support (20.1%); and Network readiness (36.7%).
Dwyer says Dimension Data’s video conferencing services are targeted to every demographic except SMEs. “Our primary focus is on multinational and global enterprises of which 79% are Global Fortune 100 and 60% of Global Fortune 500 clients.
The benefits for organisations wanting to use managed videoconferencing services are compelling:
- Focus on Core Technologies:
In most organisations, visual communications is not seen as a mission-critical technology. The adoption of managed services enables IT departments to focus on core mission-critical technologies and out-task the management of the visual communications estate to a third party in a cost-effective manner.
- Reduce Operational Cost:
The adoption of managed services negates the requirement to recruit, train, manage and retain visual communications specialists globally.
- Eliminates Cost Barriers to Entry
Deploying a visual communications infrastructure is expensive and requires a “build it and they will come” approach towards deployment. Managed video services provide a low-cost entry point into visual communications adoption, providing access to a full range of functionality, yet only paying for what the client’s enterprise consumes.
- Improved User Experience:
Traditionally, users have found visual communications to be unreliable and difficult to use. Managed services utilise the provider's expertise to ensure that reliability issues are identified and dealth with, and the ease of use is optimised to such a level that calls are pre-launched by the Virtual Network Operations Centre (VNOC). Users just need to turn up and meet.
Future of video
According to Dwyer, in the next few years there will be a significant uptick in managed video, and as organisations finalise their global video strategies and tie up their sustainability initiatives, they will need the support of an experienced partner to ensure adoption and enhance their return.
“We will also see more complex commercial models as clients choose to purchase using different models and look for customised consumption models,” explains Dwyer and points out that there’s a fundamental shift in the way businesses are looking to deploy visual communications. “This in turn means the experience that client demands will also shift,” he concludes.
About Dimension Data
Founded in 1983, Dimension Data plc is an ICT services and solutions provider that uses its technology expertise, global service delivery capability, and entrepreneurial spirit to accelerate the business ambitions of its clients. Dimension Data is a member of the NTT Group. www.dimensiondata.com