This is the first in a three-part series that will run monthly through the end of the year where we’ll be taking a close look at various cloud-related solutions, what’s trending, and partner expectations as we head into 2020.
Q4 is upon us, and we’re entering the home stretch for the year—and the decade. Businesses of all sizes are looking back on 2019 to audit crucial infrastructure and evaluate performance and cost-effectiveness to inform both their short-term organizational investments as well as long-term planning.
The adoption of cloud computing will sustain its acceleration through the new year as organizations continue to explore and fine-tune the mixture of on-premise and managed cloud services and applications that work best. In the past year, an increasing number of businesses have opted for multi-cloud and hybrid IT environments as a way to leverage the strength of various cloud solutions and deployment models based on data and application requirements as well as cost, compliance, performance, and future sustainability.
Flexera reports that 45% of enterprises deployed some sort of hybrid solution in 2019, and 31% utilized public cloud. (31% public; 9% on-premise private cloud; 6% hosted private cloud.) This year, 30% of all IT budgets were allocated to cloud computing, and by the end of 2020, 83% of enterprise workloads are expected to reside in the cloud (Forbes).
The ability for partners to recommend services and manage deployments and integrations of multiple cloud services based on their understanding of the customer requirements will be crucial next year.
According to Alastair Edwards, Chief Analyst at Canalys, “The channel will play a vital role for the cloud service providers, in terms of boosting their customer reach, from both a sales and technical perspective.” As such, cloud service providers such as Google and AWS will be forced to increase their channel programs to support partners, and partners will continue to educate themselves not only on cloud services and infrastructures, but the current and future of cloud solutions—from cloud communications and mobility to network and security.
Nearly 90% of businesses predict their IT budgets will grow or stay steady over the next year, and over $20 billion was reportedly spent in a single quarter of 2018; companies continue to increase spending on cloud solutions to improve customer experiences, drive operational efficiencies, and improve employee productivity. Cloud communications solutions such as CCaaS and UCaaS, for example, are not just tools for communications; in fact, streamlining communications—even with true omnichannel capabilities—is only a small portion of the collection of benefits organizations see from cloud-based communications solutions. Other benefits include reduced IT workloads and scalability and enhanced analytics. Forrester reports nearly 7 out of 10 IT managers feel that improving the experience of their customers is a top business priority, and PricewaterhouseCooper reports "nearly 80% of consumers say that speed, convenience, knowledgeable help, and friendly service are the most important elements of a positive customer experience."
Innovation on the horizon for cloud communication solutions includes the increasing maturity of artificial intelligence (AI) and its ability to interpret large quantities of unstructured data. For example, a contact center might field thousands of calls in a given day; AI can analyze every interaction and, based on trends, potentially identify opportunities in real-time. Be it quick fixes or new product features, AI can reduce the lead time it takes a business to adapt and deliver value back to the customer.
Similarly, IVR (interactive voice response) will continue to make headway in 2020—powered by AI, of course. With the ability to interpret accents and tones with better accuracy than traditional speech recognition software, intelligent IVR is one of the major contact center trends for 2020. AI-powered IVR systems can also benefit customers who are hesitant to wait in a call queue by assigning the caller to specific agents or departments on a case-by-case basis.
Again, in deference to customer experience, surveys have shown that customers have a strong preference for self-service solutions over agent support. As such, self-assist tools, including FAQs and tutorials that help customers to self-troubleshoot generic issues, have gained favor from consumers because they can quickly resolve the majority of simple concerns before a live agent needs to be involved. A rise in the adoption of self-assist tools is predicted in 2020, as most organizations are working to free up their agents to focus on more time and resource-intensive tasks.
Lastly, more organizations will be looking to leverage high-end message filtering technology that reduces the number of error messages and misinformation without impacting customer experience or experiencing loss of time or money. The utilization of message recall technology is a major milestone for call center business. While message transmissions can be delayed by a couple of seconds, the result could be worth millions of dollars in savings annually, depending on the size of the organization.
MarketsandMarkets reports that UCaaS will grow to over $28 billion by 2021. The market is only 16% penetrated and cloud-based contact center is growing at 25.2 CAGR resulting in a 20.9 billion market by 2022. Opportunity for partners to educate their customers on trends driving cloud adoption, reasons for it and how to get all C-Suite players on board to improve ways of business, has never been greater.
Stay tuned to our blog, where we’ll continue the conversation about cloud solutions and how it affects the entire C-Suite and individual business units along with opportunities and trends on the horizon for 2020. In the meantime, downloading our eBooks on CCaaS and UCaaS will ensure you’re up-to-speed. Don’t forget to leverage TBI’s PMC (Partner Marketing Center) tool for both agnostic and vendor-specific cloud solution campaigns, to get ahead on filling that funnel for next year.
Download our CCaaS and UCaaS eBook or use our PMC tool to campaign on these solutions!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
As Marketing Communications Manager, Amanda is responsible for creating content and carrying out internal and external communications programs; she also develops educational materials to enable TBI’s partners to sell emerging solutions. Amanda also contributes to ensuring consistency with branding and ensuring TBI provides useful and relevant content to our partners. You can reach Amanda at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with her on LinkedIn.