INTERVIEWS

‘Employees must adapt to new workplace trends’

The workplace is changing and employees are increasingly working from external locations such as cafes, customer sites and from home. In this context the use of collaboration, Unified Communications, and workflow tools are gaining more prominence.

In an email interview with Digital Creed, Jitesh N Shah, CEO,  InterCall talks about the latest workplace trends, the tools that are used, how employees in India should adapt to workplace trends, and Intercall’s plans for India.

What are the future workplace trends and how tech like UC, video conferencing, collaboration tools will be used?

Currently, we are seeing the changing nature of the workplace. Global MNCs with strong financial resources are renovating their offices to adapt them to new methods of collaboration amongst teams. Financial and pharmaceutical companies have taken the lead in this space.

These renovated offices are moving away from cubicles to shared spaces and touchdown points. Microsoft has created touchdown points in public areas such as cafeterias for collaboration purposes. These touchdown spaces are complemented with ancillary hardware devices like webcams and microphones, which facilitate collaboration across offices. Unified Communications (UC) technologies like Skype for Business, Google Apps for Work and Cisco Spark are providing new methods of communication and collaboration in the workplace.

It is necessary that end-users are trained to use these available technologies correctly and are comfortable with these new styles of working. Not being familiar with these technologies can actually make employees less productive as they might struggle to adapt.

What InterCall has witnessed in the Asian context is that people don’t like to stand out. Thus, employees in Asia often use the meeting rooms but the shared spaces and touchdown points go unused. Thus, cultural factors also need to be taken into account when implementing new styles of working. To ease the transition, InterCall is working with companies to help employees adjust to these new working styles.

What are InterCall’s plans for India? How much are you going to invest here? How are you expanding your workforce?

InterCall is committed to the Indian market for the long-term. We are constantly expanding our capabilities and offerings for our present as well as future customers in India, to provide them the best services in UC. Along with our business growth, InterCall has seen a tremendous increase in the number of employees to support our customers since our entry into India, and we are committed to providing them with avenues for personal and professional growth. We are always on the lookout for exciting talent to help grow our business further.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world and presents a huge opportunity for InterCall to expand its business. Global MNCs continue to invest in the country which is a testament to its potential. We have established a strong presence in Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru and we are continuously expanding our reach to new cities.

What kind of operations does InterCall have in India?  What are the key focus areas?

InterCall has a dual focus in India. One is to leverage our infrastructure and interface capabilities and cater to the needs of our channel, direct and global customers in India. Towards this, we have a full-fledged enterprise setup, which includes but is not restricted to, sales, marketing, product management, operations, quality, etc. The other focus is to utilize India’s cost efficiencies and provide support to our global teams, including but not restricted to call centres, R&D, testing and back office support.

Will InterCall make in India?

With India’s status as an IT hub, InterCall is constantly looking at opportunities to expand our business and operations by leveraging the local capabilities. We are continuously growing our business in India and maintain a strong commitment to the market. InterCall India is also celebrating its tenth year of operations this year. In the last decade, we are proud to be able to deliver our customers’ conferencing and collaboration requirements.

InterCall launched its first conferencing and collaboration solution called InterCall Reservation Plus Conference in February 2006. We also offered our first web conferencing and video conferencing solutions in 2006, mobile conferencing in 2009 and digital media services in 2010.  To help customers with after sales service and support, we set up a dedicated call centre in India in the year 2006. InterCall’s annual audio usage measured by minutes in India increased by 250% from 2010-2015.

This shows that India is a very important market to us and we are looking forward to serving the Indian market in the years to come.

Can you give us details about InterCall’s channel program?

InterCall has a robust channel program and it is the key to our growth within the region. We are closely integrated with our channel partners and are constantly developing new channel strategies to reach out to customers. Our channel partners have helped us harness the growth potential of India and translated it into revenue growth for the company. We are focused on supporting our channel partners with the necessary resources such as marketing collateral and training in our effort to further expand in the Indian market.

What is InterCall’s product portfolio?

InterCall offers a complete suite of UC solutions designed to meet the full spectrum of communication requirements of businesses of all sizes. Our industry-leading UC solutions including our proprietary Unified Meeting 5 are an effective and scalable way to integrate communications applications in a single interface. These UC solutions allow users to have easy access to voice, web, and video conferencing as well as presence information, email, voicemail, chat and messaging capabilities.

InterCall has partnered with Microsoft, Google and Cisco to bring added value to our customers. With Microsoft, InterCall has integrated its conferencing capabilities with tools such as Skype for Business and Microsoft Lync. InterCall for Hangouts allows people to connect to meetings from any device with InterCall’s premier conferencing solution.

With offerings ranging from Cisco WebEx Meeting Centre to more customised applications like WebEx Training Centre, WebEx Support Centre, WebEx Event Centre, Cisco Collaboration Meeting Rooms and Cisco Jabber, InterCall has partnered with Cisco to provide the best products to fulfil the specific requirements of our customers. With such a wide range of offerings, InterCall customizes the solutions for each customer to suit the needs of different organisations.

With the continued shift to mobile, InterCall has developed apps like Mobile Meet that lets users attend conferences on the go via their mobile devices. To provide an end-to-end experience to its customers from software to hardware, InterCall is working with hardware vendors like Jabra to deliver an optimum UC experience for our customers.

InterCall also offers highly flexible, configurable and scalable digital event solutions that can help businesses reach their target audience around the world. InterCall’s Webcast Studio, Virtual Environments and Corporate Tube allow businesses to create and deliver high-impact virtual presentations, events and conferences, enabling them to engage with internal and external stakeholders in a cost-effective manner.

What is InterCall’s target segment (verticals)?

InterCall’s UC solutions cater to a broad range of industries. As each industry has different needs, we work with each organisation to determine their objectives and what UC solution would be best suited for their needs. InterCall ensures that our solutions are customised to the different needs to help the organisations meet their business goals. For example, based on current needs, an oil & gas company would require audio and video conferencing solutions to coordinate operations across different markets. The digital media capability would be required by a marketing company which hosts regular events and conferences and is transitioning to virtual events.

InterCall’s UC solutions can also be customised according to the needs of the different departments within the company. This flexibility helps organisations avoid unnecessary expenditure and benefits the bottom line.

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Brian Pereira

Brian Pereira is an Indian journalist based in Mumbai. He has 25 years of technology journalism experience, and he's well known in the Indian IT industry. He is the former Editor of CHIP and InformationWeek magazines in India and has written technology articles for India's leading newspapers groups such as The Times of India and Indian Express Newspapers. Brian also writes on Aviation, startups and covers topics directed at small and medium businesses. He also has event experience and once put together the conference program for CeBIT and INTEROP events in India. Email: brian9p@gmail.com Twitter: @brian9p Linkedin: https://in.linkedin.com/in/pereirabrian

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