It has been a great opening day at Enterprise Connect 2018 in Orlando, Florida. In the fast-paced world of enterprise communications, we’ve already seen three key topics discussed from the stage and echoed on the Expo floor:

  • The confusion caused by proliferation of communications apps
  • The customer demand that communications apps work better together
  • The growing and changing role of IT in managing communication and collaboration

Communications app proliferation

We heard in the first panel discussion that an enterprise might need to manage 1,000 applications. For example, in a session on team collaboration decision factors, Jeremy Lesch, Welltok’s director of client services, found that his small company of 400 people had almost as many apps as people working there.

The noise of all these applications is both inefficient and costly. Simply switching between applications can waste up to 60 minutes per day, our recent survey found. In addition different teams throughout an organization end up utilizing various applications for different purposes when standardizing on a few throughout an organization might bring more significant benefits.

Collaboration software should, you know, collaborate

In a panel on team collaboration in enterprise communications, Kira Makagon, RingCentral’s Executive Vice President of Innovation, explained from the stage that a loss of context as people switch from one modality, such as voice to meetings to team messaging, is one of the biggest problems that RingCentral is solving today.

But as much as business communications providers would like to provide for all your needs, companies recognize the rich technology ecosystem required in today’s enterprise – and the need for integration between them. At Enterprise Connect today, a recurring theme was how team messaging should provide more seamless connections to other communications products outside of their own offerings to address this. For example, RingCentral provides a unified communications and collaboration platform that includes voice, video, team messaging and more,  from any device, we also partner with other business app vendors such as SalesForce, Box, and others with an API open for developers.

IT as a broker between top-down and bottom-up communication app selection

With some team messaging and collaboration solutions bubbling up from the trenches, such as product development teams, and others being enforced from the top down, IT has the formidable task of being positioned in the middle and tasked with managing app overload and ensuring these apps are well managed and secure.

With standard applications deployed across the enterprise, IT can provide better security, support, and often save costs. IT understands the corporate goals and need for standardization and security but also has its ear to the ground and knows how fast change is happening in this space. Last year, the discussion was along the lines of “Should collaboration be hosted in the cloud or not?” This year, a cloud victory is so complete that no one is even discussing this. Without IT to provide balance, a company could get caught flat-footed in an era of rapid change.

Visit RingCentral at Enterprise Connect

The digital workplace of the future is happening today. Stop by Booth #1907 to explore how RingCentral communications and collaboration solutions can bring to life the power of connection.