Cloud Communications has just begun

Today a majority of the enterprises are well-down the path of deciding how cloud communications can be leveraged to have more cohesive organizations, and customers who are fully engaged. Communication over SMS, Voice, E-Mail and USSD has begun to gain wider acceptance with organizations effectively using these services to meet their objectives. Over the last few years, SMS in particular, has been extensively used by organizations to fulfill a huge majority of the communication requirements. Indian enterprises are however, beginning to realize that SMS is not the silver bullet for all communications requirements. As customers become more demanding, enterprises are looking to become more nuanced in how they communicate

Other cloud communication channels can perhaps offer a much powerful interface for fulfilling an organization’s communication needs. For example, automated voice services can provide a highly interactive communication platform in a way that SMS cannot, while also providing local language interaction that is so critical in a market like India where various regional languages are spoken. Also, as internet penetration increases enterprises are seeing email as a critical element of their customer communication strategy. While traditionally Indian enterprises would attempt to extend their in-house email system for customer communications as well, they have realized that such systems are neither scalable enough, nor do they have the required functionality for effectively tracking communications to their customers. And as quality of interaction becomes much more critical than quantity of interaction, the ability to do intelligent analytics on communications is absolutely critical.

Even other mobile technologies, such as USSD, have seen significant regulatory involvement in helping overcome the inter-operator technical barriers that had limited the effectiveness of such technologies in India.

To meet these changing needs, cloud communications providers have a unique opportunity to provide an incredibly rich set of communications solutions for enterprises. Though the regulatory situation has significantly improved, history suggests that one must expect the unexpected. With more than a dozen telcos still active in India, and with telcos remaining a critical part of the vendor equation, cloud communications providers must know how and when to cultivate relationships with the right telcos. Competition in India will always be fierce, and thus competitive advantage must be an area of constant reinvention. Customers are also incredibly demanding, and so providers must be nimble and ready to provide whatever support is required for success.

Today many providers in India provide point solutions across many elements of the cloud communications landscape. But few, if any, are focused on building a unified communications platform that enables enterprises to effortlessly pick and integrate across communication media, while also providing multiple off-the-shelf applications that can instantly address many enterprise pain points. UNICEL believes that technology expertise and customer insight is at the heart of being able to deliver on that promise, and that is exactly what we have always sought to do. Having completely redesigned our service delivery platform based on these concepts, we have already integrated voice, USSD, and email services onto a single platform that we use to deliver our SMS services, and we are constantly inventing innovative new solutions to enhance enterprise communications.

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