The year 2020 was dedicated to digital. The improved use of voice solutions such as VoiP or hosted PBX in the cloud has further strengthened the switch to digital voice, with companies opting for easy scalability, cost efficiency and disaster recovery benefits to overcome the pandemic. However, the PRI / SIP compatible communication system has also held its own, with some companies favoring traditional telephony because of its familiarity. Various technological advancements are commonly used by large enterprises, but now even SMEs can adopt most technologies to run their businesses. We are seeing an increase in authentic content marketing and increased use of digital spaces to build and nurture relationships with consumers, increased demand for chatbots, more widespread use of voice search, greater focus and increased use of data analysis to determine consumer intent, increased use of social media marketing and greater emphasis on providing an engaging user experience (UX)
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Against this background, let’s take a look at some of the emerging trends that will shape the enterprise voice communications landscape in 2021.
Unified communications to enter the mainstream
Digital communication and collaboration took center stage in 2020. Amid the mandate of social distancing aggravated by a growing focus on health and hygiene, individuals and organizations have switched to video and communication tools. audio conferencing to streamline workflows and maintain business productivity. The need for a unified communication system integrating voice, video and data channels has therefore increased more than ever in the post-pandemic world.
As companies increasingly harness the limitless potential of innovative digital alternatives to face-to-face dating and meetings, this trend is expected to continue through 2021 and beyond. It will be complemented by the increased adoption of SIP-enabled mobile VoIP systems. The coming year will see more and more professionals using application-based virtual numbers to communicate effectively with customers anytime, anywhere. Leading providers of unified communications solutions will help new-age businesses increase productivity by deploying a host of features on integrated telephone systems. It includes caller ID, voicemail, call record-transfer programming, direct in / out dialing, call search and call masking
BYOD and remote working will rule the roost
Before 2020, BYOD and remote working were little more than buzzwords. After the viral epidemic hit the world, these two concepts went from being an exception to being a rule almost overnight. Even amid the lockdown restrictions, startups and SMEs have struggled to ensure that their brand value doesn’t suffer. Therefore, they quickly turned to an agile communication system to ensure high levels of productivity as well as robust customer service even when their employees were working from home. In 2021, brands will likely continue to take advantage of advanced voice solutions, instant messaging, video conferencing, and more. to maintain a competitive advantage.
AI-Enabled Intelligent VoIP Assistants Will Become the Standard
One of the main reasons businesses are turning to cloud telephony solutions is because they want to provide 24/7 service to their customers. Digital communications solutions give professionals the flexibility to meet customer demands anytime, anywhere. Therefore, forward-thinking organizations are integrating AI into their phone systems to not only streamline day-to-day tasks such as routing calls or forwarding calls to voicemail, but also to provide more personalized service to customers. .
The combination of AI and VoIP has the potential to radically improve an organization’s customer service offering. 2020 had already seen a spike in the adoption of AI-based chatbots as businesses struggled to cope with the increase in customer calls and inquiries amid the pandemic. Over the coming year, more businesses will take advantage of chatbots and programmed voice response to automate responses to basic queries. This will help them save not only time and costs, but also human resources which can then be used to deal with more complex or urgent requests.
AI can also help businesses break down language barriers by analyzing speech patterns and enabling real-time call translations. This feature can enable professionals to transcend language boundaries when addressing clients, especially in a linguistically diverse country like India.
Increased focus on privacy and cybersecurity
The pandemic has seen an alarming increase in cases of cyber attacks on businesses. In its wake, businesses have started to focus more on their cybersecurity front to ensure that their networks as well as their customers’ data and privacy are not compromised. Responsible organizations will continue to optimize their voice solutions with encryption technology such as TLS / SRTP and passcodes to protect phone calls and messages from malicious actors. The future of cybersecurity will revolve around disaster business continuity, remote collaboration tools, internet – last mile, security and the cloud (BRISC)
Increased demand for UCaaS
The past half decade has seen the continued consolidation of communication channels into an integrated service, leading to the rise of Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS). These services rely on VoIP technology to provide integrated telephony solutions and other features such as web and video conferencing, team collaboration, instant messaging, faxing, etc. 2021 will see more and more companies opting for UCaaS solutions hosted in the cloud to configure their communication networks. One of the biggest advantages of using UCaaS is that it saves time and money when setting up their communication networks. Businesses would no longer have to purchase and install separate video and audio equipment, instant messaging software and voice solutions while gaining a competitive advantage over their peers.
Predictive analytics and data science
Predictive analytics is an advanced data science technique comprising data mining and machine learning to predict future events with a high level of reliability and accuracy. All modern businesses recognize data as a valuable asset. Over the coming year, they will accumulate more and more data on customer interactions and use predictive analytics to identify key challenges and train leaders to deliver better customer experiences. With the right predictive analytics tools, businesses can gain a forward-looking perspective on their customers’ behavior and make smarter decisions for their business. Predictive Analytics has been proven to increase revenue and efficiency for many businesses and help them achieve their goals.
VoIP and WebRTC
In the near future, VoIP technology will offer real-time communication solutions like live video support, instant calls, etc. 2021 is poised to be the year when the marriage of WebRTC and VoIP marks the preliminary step in this direction. The combination will also allow seamless file sharing and direct calling from web browsers without the need to add widgets or plugins.
Here’s the bottom line: the rise of hybrid voice solutions
Each business has its own needs and requirements. Some of the factors that companies take into account when choosing which communications solution to deploy include employee strength, profitability, scalability, information security, and more. That said, digital and analog voice solutions offer distinct advantages for business communication. As a result, modern businesses are increasingly leveraging a combination of cloud-hosted, SIP, and PRI communication setups. An optimal combination of telecommunications tools that strike the right balance between performance and budget can help businesses glean the best of both worlds in 2021 and beyond.
By Joyjeet Bose, Senior Vice President – Small Business Operations, Tata Teleservices
About Tata Teleservices
Tata Teleservices Limited, together with its subsidiary Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Limited (Tata Teleservices), is a growing market leader in the enterprise arena and offers a comprehensive portfolio of voice, data and managed services to businesses and operators nationwide. Tata Teleservices has an extensive, high quality and robust wired network and offers its products and services in over 60 cities across India. Tata Teleservices has one of the largest business-focused teams in the industry; This team of 1,300 sales and service professionals and 1,200 distribution partners, through its reach, deep commitment and technological focus, deliver a focused sales and service experience to customers. Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) Limited is listed on ESB and NSE in India For more information, please visit: www.tatateleservices.com