The evolution from on-premise PBX to a Unified Communications cloud application is taking some interesting turns - and the latest one is changing how we define productivity in the enterprise world. If we think about it, most of our daily tasks involve a mix of real time communications, either using text, voice or video, and our software tools that enable us to complete our tasks. Quite often, both of them combine and we find ourselves using both simultaneously to achieve what we need, but that does not mean they interop seamlessly and save us precious time in this hyperactive and hyper-connected world.
Many times, we find ourselves wondering why we still need to write emails containing the highlights and action points of the conference call or video conference we just had? Why do I still need to create the reminders of the deadlines in my calendar manually instead of just being done automatically, while we were having the conference and discussing them. Well, those times are almost a thing of the past. Unified Communications is now evolving and enhancing collaboration. The typical acronym UC has now become UCC (Unified Communications & Collaboration). Not far from now, all your tools will become centralized in a single application which interop with all your other tools.
Your primary tool becomes your UCC system, and for many tasks, your only required tool. These automated workflows become possible given the evolution of speech recognition, APIs, and the latest advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI). Dialogic showcased with IBM Watson not long ago that this is not something out of a science fiction movie. During a video conference, we demonstrated that Watson AI engine is able to understand and act upon certain requests or talking points during the conference in real time. The same can be replicated to happen during a normal phone call. For example, a sales call which the AI gets the keywords that the customer repeated the most. Potentially showing his main concern or interest. Getting those and adding them directly in that customer record in a CRM. If you think about it, all that the sales person had to do was call the client and talk or listen, no need to open the CRM during or after the call.
In most modern applications, it is part of their DNA to have an extended API architecture which allows for a variety of interactions. The API culture has exploded in the past few years and it’s fueling how applications talk to each other. The UCC leverages the API trend and enables it to achieve new functionalities with an increasing portfolio of applications, it ranges from sales tools such as CRM’s, support such as ticketing systems, and productivity such as project and task management applications. The UCC itself can offer certain APIs based on triggers such as starting a call, pressing a number, or hanging up a call, creating a bi-channel of interaction between the application and the UCC system. This will redefine the enterprise requirements and center them among the applications ability to interop with the UCC.
It was once believed that earth was the center of the universe and the sun and all planets revolved around it, well while that theory was dismissed, very soon the theory that every application revolves around the UCC, might become a reality.