Simplifying the Customer Journey with Polycom
Polycom talk better customer experiences and business trends
The UC marketplace has grown increasingly complex in the last couple of years. Today’s enterprises and end-users alike want more than just a voice experience from their communication strategy – they need a solution that allows them to connect through various channels, with new productivity features and opportunities to facilitate success.
As an expert in the world of video, voice, and content collaboration, Polycom hopes to lead the charge towards a more empowered future for enterprises around the world. This multinational corporation is constantly developing new and enhanced endpoints that allow professionals not only to speak to each other but also interact over video and collaborate on documents too. I caught up with the President of Asia Pacific, Europe, and Africa for Polycom, Marco Landi, to learn more about the brand’s vision of the future, and what they’re doing to differentiate themselves in the communication endpoint space.
Introducing Marco Landi
Marco Landi has been with Polycom for about three years now. He started off leading the EMEA space for the company, before moving into Asia Pacific, Europe, and Africa to head up the management team and identify new areas for growth in locations around the world. Although Marco doesn’t necessarily come from a background in UC, he’s adapted quickly to the innovative, and often changeable nature of the industry.
“Before Polycom, I focused mostly on the supply chain, hardware, and software technology.” Perhaps one of the things that makes Marco so effective in his new role is his ability to connect with other people. Because he’s lived and worked on three different continents and knows how to speak five different languages, he knows how to make things work in a geographically diverse business. I was keen to find out more about Marco’s experiences in the UC industry, he told me:
“Different regions work in different ways. Depending on where you go today, you’ll find that some countries are much slower at adopting UC technologies than others, and some are simply adopting different roadmaps.”
What Business Trends is Polycom Seeing Today?
According to Marco, Polycom does about 25% of its business in Asia, which means that his job is incredibly important to making sure that the brand stays on top.
“If you go into China and India, Polycom is much stronger and more recognised than competitors like Cisco. In fact, China is our biggest country for sales after the US.”
Landi told me that the trends Polycom is seeing in the UC industry today are very similar to the trends that have been commented on by countless other companies. “There’s more talk about collaboration in the field, rather than just concentrating on voice communications or video conferencing. We’re seeing all of the different aspects of communication coming together in voice, video and conference – making the trend more “unified collaboration” than unified communications.”
Marco also noted that the other major trend that’s transforming the space today is the ever-progressing move to cloud. While some companies are naturally closer to a more “complete-cloud” experience than others, everyone is beginning to see the value of using a more flexible structure for communications.
“With the Trio collaboration kit, for instance – the system that offers audio, video, and content sharing in one, we’re seeing exponential growth because the device fills the gap in the market for companies who want a device that’s capable of more than just audio.”
How Are You Transforming the Meeting Room Experience?
Though Polycom has a reputation for creating high-quality devices for the meeting room environment, I was keen to find out more about how the company differentiates itself in the current space. After all, with more than 50 million meeting rooms worldwide, Polycom is perfectly positioned to highlight themselves as the endpoint of choice for their customers.
“We have more flexibility in our portfolio. For many customers, we’re cheaper and easier for collaboration, and that means we don’t just serve bigger segments of the market, but also huddle rooms and other environments too.”
One particularly important connection for Polycom right now is their experiences with Microsoft. As more customers begin to talk about the Microsoft Teams explosion, Polycom’s close connection to the technology giant is sure to come in handy. Marco told me: “Polycom has always been in the Microsoft camp because we were the first ones to fully integrate our portfolio. When we went private, it was Microsoft that actually convinced our new owner to buy us.”
However, Polycom isn’t necessarily putting all their eggs into Microsoft’s basket. While their relationship with the company remains strong, they’re also looking for new ways to integrate with other organisations too.
Is Software Becoming More Important to Polycom?
Though Polycom is a company known primarily for its handset devices and hardware, software is emerging as a more important concept for many organisations within the UC space. Marco told me that software has always been a strong component of the brand. For instance, in Real Connect integrated within Skype for Business, the software was made by Polycom.
“We want to become the endpoint of choice for any platform, which means that we’re becoming less precious with integrations. We’re ready to support all cloud platforms and video endpoints, and we’re linking up with new companies like Zoom and BlueJeans to make that ambition a reality.”
The future for Polycom is going to be all about ensuring they can offer the best integrations available. The Trio is set to integrate fully with Zoom by the summer, and Polycom are consistently looking for ways to offer a more comprehensive experience in all their solutions. “Software is going to be very important for us in terms of ease of use, integration, and even analytics.”
What’s Next for Polycom?
There are plenty of great opportunities for Polycom waiting on the horizon. For instance, the company recently announced new partnership capabilities for the Trio device – which is now the fastest-selling conference phone in the history of the company. There’s also tie-ups in the pipeline with Zoom, BlueJeans, and Amazon Web Services too.
Interestingly, Landi told me that one thing the company will be focusing more heavily on in the future, is simplifying the buyer journey for everyone involved. He noted that while choice can be a great thing, it’s also very difficult for customers, as it means that they have more options to navigate through when trying to make an informed decision.
“We’re going to be there to help people choose the solutions that are right for them based on their unique needs.”