Welcome to the Contact Center, AWS!
The Serenova team and I just got back from Enterprise Connect and it was once again an amazing show. Our friends at UBM did a phenomenal job of capturing and capitalizing on both the momentum and ongoing digital transformation of the Communications, Collaboration, and Contact Center spaces.
In addition to the fantastic visibility, coverage and feedback we received around our new Skylight Desktop release for CxEngage, we also got to experience firsthand, the energy and excitement around shifting technologies in the space.
Twilio’s Jeff Lawson may have summed it up best when he advocated for a return to humanity in an era of global-scale that can dehumanize customers. (And, when he hilariously managed his way through an internet outage during his live keynote demo and delighted the crowd as he brought it home successfully).
And then came AWS…
We obviously have a very strong partnership with AWS, so we were very tuned in to the pre-show buzz starting in February that they might be making a big announcement in March, and then they briefed us on their announcement the week before the show.
In case you missed it, AWS announced that they are launching Amazon Connect, a voice-only Cloud Based Contact Center that they originally built to support their own internal teams, and which – no surprise – leverages their leading (and phenomenal) Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platform for global-scale and resiliency.
Amazon Connect also leverages many of the same AWS services that Serenova is already using or evaluating to drive innovation within our own AWS-based CCaaS platform, CxEngage – like Kinesis, S3, Lambda, Aurora, and now Lex and Polly.
This combination of voice-only, self-service automation, and self-configuration will be very compelling for SMBs looking to offer enterprise-like service with a utility-based pricing model – and without the complexity of staffing and managing to additional channels like chat, email, SMS, and messaging. In fact, we expect it to be quickly disruptive for some our key competitors who depend on that space for the long-tail of their businesses.
For Serenova, on the other hand, this is truly a welcome and very positive market development. Our sweet spot is large, multi-national, omnichannel contact centers that turn to CxEngage because of how we leverage AWS, not only for the global reach and local presence offered, but also for their suite of services that help power our pace of innovation and differentiation in the contact center space.
In fact, based on our research and conversations with analysts at Enterprise Connect, we believe that we can now claim the number one spot for market share of AWS-based cloud contact center seats in the industry.
AWS is a big part of that – though we also have several other advantages that have reinforced our preference with global enterprises. Specifically:
- Our architecture virtually eliminates issues of call quality and latency that plague the industry
- Our flow and routing usability and capabilities are years ahead of anyone else in the space
- We are the only vendor that offers a single Data Pipe for both real-time and historical reporting for a single source of truth across the enterprise
So for us, AWS joining the contact center space is an extremely positive development. Not only does it validate the space and provide greater visibility into our market, but it also reinforces the inevitable shift to cloud and ongoing digital transformation across all Communications platforms.
It also provides more services and apps (like Lex and Polly) that we can evaluate for our own offerings, and provides an opportunity for Serenova to further strengthen our relationship with an incredibly strong partner in AWS.
Personally, I believe we’ll see a scrambling of vendors in our space clamoring to move to AWS based on the announcement, but the truth is that it’s been the right thing to do all along, so we’re glad to have a 3-year head start on the market.
There’s no doubt that AWS entering this market raises the bar for the space. Ultimately, it will lead to better customer experiences, and that’s a good thing for all of us.