Experience Avaya Asia Pacific 2019 came to APAC for the second time with one clear vision: to elevate communications to the next generation of engagement, and connecting enterprises to three key stakeholders (workforce, customer and community) with secure and intelligent experiences. The event brought Avaya senior leadership team from the USA as well as Asia to communicate Avaya new vision, mission, and strategy with partners and clients, and the importance of creating long term sustainable value. Avaya new mission is to transform digital communications software, services, and devices for all sizes of businesses. During the event, Avaya also showcased Avaya Intelligent Xperiences (Avaya IX) which consist of three key components; IX Workplace, IX Contact Centre and IX Mobility.
In 2018 Avaya announced that it has completed its debt restructuring and emerged from bankruptcy with a new board and leadership team in place. Jim Chirico, the company’s former chief operating officer, has replaced Kevin Kennedy as chief executive and president. Avaya has also emerged as a publicly traded company with a significantly strengthened balance sheet. During analysts roundtable with Avaya leadership team, Mr. Chirico explained that Avaya is financially strong to invest in the large and growing contact center and unified communications markets and the company is going to complete its transformation to a software, services and cloud solutions provider. Avaya was spun off from Lucent Technologies in 2000 in an attempt to restructure its struggling operations and now is the number one global leader in Contact Center (CC) solutions and serving clients in more than 175 countries.
Avaya has realized the importance of emerging technologies (cloud, mobility, IoT and AI) in delivering optimal customer experience. In 2018 the company invested in Cogito, to deliver AI for emotional intelligence that enables organizations to sense human behavior and guide call center agents to enhance productivity and customer experience. Cogito is also a founding member of Avaya’s A.I.Connect developer ecosystem. Avaya’s A.I.Connect initiative focuses on bringing together an ecosystem of vendors and developers who take an active role in building AI driven solutions. These solutions enable Avaya customers to deliver more engaging experiences for their own end customers, enhancing and integrating workflows with smarter, more personalized interactions through the use of technology.
Avaya’s vast community of 4,700 channel partners and its industry vertical coverage in airlines, hotels, banks and service companies has positioned the company as a leader in CC. Attendees of this year’s event had access to product keynotes, product demo, presentations on a new strategy, meet-ups with product experts, and peer-to-peer networking opportunities. One of the Avaya’s solutions presented was Avaya IX Collaboration Unit CU360. CU360 integrates with existing UC platform or any existing standards-based video infrastructure and allows the user to access and use cloud-based applications. The objective is to transform any space into a cloud-enabled collaboration room where people can seamlessly interact and share applications and content. Avaya has a long history of providing enterprise AV conferencing solutions to medium and large organizations.
Avaya OneCloud solution portfolio enables organizations to hit the ground running with unified communications and contact center solutions delivered on their own private cloud. Avaya offers standard reference architectures or customers can team up with Avaya global experts to design a custom solution. Avaya announced that they have grown public cloud seats 300% over the past year and now have over 3.5 million cloud seats. The OneCloud offers delivery choices in terms of public, private, hybrid and CPaaS. Avaya also recently announced a partnership with Standard Chartered to deliver a multi-year client experience transformation project that will enable the bank to more fully align its services with clients’ fast-paced, digitally connected lives.
One of Avaya key focus is to deliver newly available products to the market such as AI and mobility solutions. Avaya AI capabilities improve contact center productivity, provide new revenue streams for its customers and differentiate the company from its competition. Avaya has developed AI collaboration with Google to fully leverage the AI and cloud capabilities of both companies, providing Avaya clients with new capabilities to enhance their customer experience and achieve desired business outcomes. The company also launched strategic partnerships with other technology vendors like Salesforce.com, IBM, Google, Afiniti, Slack and Verint, to name a few.
Experience Avaya Asia Pacific 2019 successfully conveyed two messages to partners and customers in Asia. The first was that Avaya is transforming its products with innovative technologies but remain focus on CC and UC. And the second message was that the company is customer focused and offers simplified customer experience. From an industry analyst point of view, Avaya’s new mission will face some challenges since other tech vendors such as AWS introduced AWS Connect platform. AWS Connect offers a self-service, cloud-based contact center service that makes it easy for any business to deliver better customer service at a lower cost. However, as Jim Chirico shared during his opening speech Avaya should look through the customer lens and become a customer-led company to stay relevant in today’s competitive marketplace.