Graham Fry, Managing Director, avsnet

I’ve seen my fair share of change since founding avsnet 13 years ago, but our industry seems to have gone into overdrive recently.

First was news that Polycom is being bought by Plantronics in a deal that will shake up the visual communications space. This is just as the race for a dominant cloud video provider hots up too.

A day rarely goes by without another exciting new development from our partners in this space. They’re redefining collaboration and the workplace at an incredible pace and through the power of the cloud each new feature is deployed seamlessly to the end-user. This is creating tighter integration across solutions than was possible in the past.

Elsewhere Cisco rebranded collaboration platform Spark as Cisco Webex Teams – another indication that end-users could be tiring of the sheer choice of platforms available to them.

More and more businesses are banging the drum for solutions to be simplified and for there to be better integration between product lines (again, the need for tighter integration!).

This theme came up in our recent customer event at Cisco. Our attendees debated how best to provide teams different ways to collaborate and communicate without having to re-educate people each and every time a new solution is deployed.

Balancing flexibility and a fluid user experience is a challenge that needs overcoming if businesses are to deliver long-term business success from their collaboration investments.

Finally, we have IT security and the network, two business critical, no, let me rephrase that – universe critical! – considerations for every organisation in operation today.

GDPR has brought security to the forefront of many boardroom discussions and while most of us are fatigued by the regulation, companies have recognised how crucial a secure, robust network is for maintaining market competitiveness and compliance.

All this change can be overwhelming, which is why many of our customers adopt new solutions with a phased approach. They identify exactly what they want to achieve, get the fundamentals right and then measure the results.

Small changes can lead to big improvements after all. It’s merely a matter of defining a clear plan of action that caters to your people, workplace, collaboration estate and organisational culture.

Anyway, I must get on, judging by the first half of 2018 I can only imagine what the upcoming half holds for us all…

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