8x8 is one of five leaders in Gartner’s Unified Communications as a Service Magic Quadrant. As the analyst firm notes, the San Jose, Calif.-based company has branded its UCaaS offering Virtual Office. 8x8 also sells a cloud-based contact center solution called Virtual Contact Center. And while 8x8 started out catering to small and mid-sized businesses, it is now branching out to reach and win enterprise accounts as well.
The company will be exhibiting and speaking next week at ITEXPO Feb. 8 through 10 in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. 8x8 is also a Gold Sponsor of ITEXPO.
To provide readers and ITEXPO attendees with a better idea of what 8x8 does and what it will be focused on at next week’s show, we interviewed Matt McGinnis, 8x8’s vice president of product marketing.
Here’s what he had to say.
How have technology changes in the past 12 months helped businesses grow?
As technology becomes increasingly mobile and cloud-oriented, businesses are focusing on how they can best serve customers and employees with a flexible work environment that allows them to do their jobs from anywhere and anytime. We’re seeing these changes throughout the enterprise with an increase in apps, features, and partnerships that provide seamless workplace communications and workflow.
What does the term collaboration mean to you?
Collaboration is at the heart of what we do at 8x8. We provide the tools and services to help companies connect with one another no matter where they are in the world. As more of today’s workforce become less dependent on traditional forms of communication to get their work done, they reject tools that silo information and make it difficult to access. We aim to open those lines of communication for easy collaboration by providing a full suite of services and applications that bring everyone and everything together in one place.
How will augmented/virtual reality be used in business environments?
As the workforce becomes increasingly global, the idea of employees physically working from a traditional brick-and-mortar office will diminish as talented workers are sourced from all over the world. Augmented reality and virtual reality have the potential to build a framework of the office of the future, while using foundational technologies like cloud-based unified communications and contact centers for employee collaboration across the globe.
How is 8x8 addressing the mobile workforce?
8x8’s solutions are designed for a mobile workforce. While desk phones are still used in plenty of offices, companies – including 8x8 – are starting to see a greater shift to BYOD. Increasingly, personal mobile devices are the No. 1 mode of communication in daily work. Our solutions allow for a seamless integration between the two: a single phone number that follows you across devices.
To what extent are you using cloud services?
Everything we do is based in the cloud. 8x8’s offers cloud-based enterprise communications and contact center services. Our own employees use 8x8 Virtual Office and Virtual Contact Center, which means our everyday workplace communications are fully immersed in the cloud. The cloud provides the flexibility we need to seamlessly grow and expand to more locations.
What is 8x8 doing to keep channel partners in the loop as technology progresses?
8x8 recently expanded its global channel partner program, Channel 2.0, which not only encourages the channel to shift from on-premises to a cloud business model, but also provides partners with a better access point for simplified automation, self-service, technical training, and new partner certifications. With 8x8, partners can navigate the industry’s explosive cloud communications growth with tools and services that simplify their daily processes and ultimately help increase sales and profits.
What do you have planned for your ITEXPO booth next week?
8x8’s booth (#212) will be showcasing its 8x8 Virtual Office Unified Communications as a Service offering, including Virtual Office meetings, mobile and analytics, all of which can help employees connect and collaborate across the globe via any device. Attendees should stop by to see how our tools and solutions can provide their compan[ies] with the flexible communications platform they need to connect with coworkers and get work done from anywhere at anytime. Rather than an expensive on-premises solution that can be difficult to manage and scale, 8x8’s cloud-based solutions offer a simple, unified platform for a fraction of the cost.
What are you most looking forward to at ITEXPO 2017?
I’m most looking forward to the great lineup of panels and speakers at this year’s ITEXPO. It’s always a fantastic opportunity to network and learn from some of the brightest minds in the business.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi