According to Tony Rich of Unify, the biggest trend for 2018 was the “consumerisation” of enterprise products increasing. “People want business tools that mirror the tools they use outside of work. This makes people feel more familiar with enterprise tech.”
Unify also notes that consumers have been demanding tools that can build an ecosystem around the services and systems they already use, like LinkedIn or Salesforce. “UC providers are becoming a catalyst to orchestrate all of these processes into a single platform.”
Tony also commented that security continues to be a significant concern for many customers. “Now that people are more aware of how their data is used, vendors are under greater pressure to ensure that their platforms are secure.”
According to Tony Rich, Unify also believes that AI and bots will transform the unified communication space in the year to come. “Bots that help to automate business processes is one of the biggest opportunities for the industry, creating value and driving customer experience.”
Unify feels that bots offer huge potential in a range of environments, across all manner of sectors and industries. “Bots enable businesses to simplify their operations and provide customers with more personalised services. Most enterprise companies and software vendors now apply a suite of bots to their solutions.”
Tony believes that 2019 will bring with it an accelerated growth in bots and AI. “Smart bots will become increasingly popular as companies begin to recognise their full potential.”
Tony noted that in specific industries, bots are already having a significant impact on the marketplace, showing companies where problems arise, and providing relevant information to help fix issues faster. “Predictive analysis allows us to be more proactive in our responses, and I believe that as an industry, we’ll start to see a shift from more reactive to proactive responses.”
According to Tony, the changing interface of the communication space moves the conversation from “how humans will be replaced by technology” to how people can work alongside technology to improve productivity and efficiency while delivering better experiences for staff and customers alike.