Will Your Next Voice Mail System Work With A Facebook PBX? appearing on the UC Strategies web site under Expert Views.
by Neal Shact
Customers today are being sold a bill of goods. Vast resources are being poured into delivering the message that Unified Communications is a Winner-Takes-All game. Unless you buy everything, including your next voice mail system from a giant firm like Massive Dynamics* (Fringe, Fox), you will miss out on accruing all of the all-knowing and all-seeing benefits that can only be delivered from the wizard behind the curtain.
Let's dispel this nonsense up front. Ask yourself the following questions:
How likely is it that the solution you are looking at will work with any of the powerful Web 2.0 emerging technologies like Facebook, Twitter or Linked In?
Do the new “required” components work with anything else you already have? Do they work with your Avaya, NEC, Siemens or Nortel PBX's? The voice mail systems we work with don't work with a Facebook PBX because it doesn't exist, but work with everything else.
How customer focused are these Massive Dynamics companies if their message to you and your senior management is to get rid of everything you have and start over with them?
Whatever happened to evaluating each element of a solution and buying what you think is best of breed vs. vendor lock in?
How future-proof is the Massive Dynamics product line anyway?
We are at an inflection point of a technology curve, but it is not the one that you are hearing about from armies of heavily financed sales and marketing teams. It is the threshold of the integration of Web 2.0 technologies on communications.
The early signs are already here. Skype delivers large volumes of business traffic and the use of their IM technology is wide spread. With more and more employees working remote, other Web 2.0 products will be increasingly used by remote workers.
The movement towards the use of these technologies started with low cost communications like Skype and the instant messaging we saw our children using. The next step was a more active use of social networking like Facebook (those kids again!) and the grown-up version we technology users more frequently deploy, LinkedIn. Now it is Immersive Internet technologies like Second Life and the beginning of mini-blogger tools like Twitter (I still don't get that one).
In the face of these rapid and radical changes, shouldn't you value flexibility to be prepared to adjust to a rapidly changing market or should you double down your bets on Massive Dynamics?
* the fictional giant technology company featured on the popular TV show 'Fringe".