This blog is the fourth in a series that describes the changing landscape of technology sales. Previous and upcoming installments discuss how the video collaboration industry is being impacted and where service-led engagements can benefit customers, partners and vendors.
Today when we work with customers who purchase our technology, the majority of our services engagements occur at the time of installation, with varying degrees of customer support once the solution is up and running. With the increasing complexity of UC environments and a shift to B4B models [read my previous post to learn more about B4B], technology providers will share more of the journey and more of the risk with our customers.
During the consideration and decision phases of the buying process, customers will increasingly look for help with their specification, assessment, integration and design challenges. Consulting engagements such as solution design, envisioning and network assessment will help customers plan for and make informed decisions about how to prepare for, deploy and integrate video into existing UC environments for optimum performance and rapid ROI. A clear understanding of the ultimate goals, mutually agreed upon expectations and definitions of success, increased transparency during the design and readiness phases, shared data to optimize the relationship and reduced downstream implementation challenges will translate to greater value.
In the new world, installation means more than plugging in a box and making sure it lights up. Once the lights are on, that’s when the real opportunity begins. As vendors we need to make sure our solutions are customized for the customers’ business environment and integrated with other existing or planned technologies and processes so that the “boundaries” appear seamless to end users.
After installation, there is a critical need to remain involved beyond the standard support and break fix engagement. Adoption services and analytics assist the customer in ensuring that video is aligned to strategic initiatives, that end users are consuming the technology and that metrics are available to track utilization, capacity and call quality. Managed services offer customers the option of outsourcing some or all of their ongoing operational activities. Staying constructively aligned on the customer’s desired outcome helps build the trust and loyalty crucial to mutual success and growth.
A white paper describing 5 easy steps to drive video adoption is available on the Polycom website. Please share any other ideas or best practices you’ve experienced for driving technology adoption by adding a comment below.