November 3, 2016
As contact/call center managers, it’s important to have your eyes on the future of your center. While it is easy to focus on a single call or a single shift, it’s more important to keep track of the bigger picture. Contact/call centers entirely depend on the underlying technology that supports them. Without a stable and reliable contact/call center platform, it would be near impossible to manage the call demands of your customers. Contact/call center managers need to stay abreast of changes in the industry in case there is a development that could impact your operation.
For Avaya/Nortel customers, your platform developer could be making some big changes in the near future that your contact/call center must be ready for. At the heart of these changes is Avaya’s financial situation and their oversized suite of products.
The Financial Situation
Avaya made a huge acquisition in 2009 when they purchased Nortel for $900 million, and so far, it has not paid off like they expected it would. In fact, Moody’s has even lowered their credit rating. That’s a serious sign that Avaya/Nortel is in trouble, and when actually looking at the financials, it gets worse.
Avaya has to pay $400 million in interest alone every year, and it has $600 million in debt that is set to mature in 2017. These extreme costs continue to push Avaya into the red every year, and it seems like there are few ways out. Reuters even reported that Avaya is looking to sell its contact/call center business altogether, and talks have begun with Genesys to do just that. Considering Genesys’s recent acquisition of Interactive Intelligence, they could be looking to consolidate the market even further.
Too Many Contact/Call Center Platforms
Currently, Avaya offers four different platforms in the SMB space due to their acquisition of Nortel, and the uses for these platforms all overlap with each other. For example, IP Office Contact Center is for operations of less than 50 agents, but Avaya Aura CC Elite Multichannel covers contact/call centers from 20 to 10,000 agents.
You have to ask, will Avaya be maintaining four different platforms in the long term, or is something going to give?
With so many products on the market at the same time, Avaya is competing with themselves and spreading their research and development resources too thin. Either one or more platforms are going to be dissolved in the near future, or they all will lag behind in innovation compared to more focused developers like Cisco and Interactive Intelligence.
Why Does this Matter?
If Avaya sells their contact/call center business to Genesys, you can expect at least some of the old Avaya and Nortel platforms to be dissolved or absorbed by existing Genesys solutions. Genesys just recently purchased Interactive Intelligence and now offers a fully cloud-hosted platform. They won’t need to keep around another four platforms. So, it may be best to switch platforms instead of going forward with your next update.
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