Why is Cisco’s approach to collaboration different?
If you’ve been following the trends in collaboration, you know that several technology companies have developed various forms of collaboration solutions. As I’ve said in my previous blog, Cisco’s solution to collaboration is Cisco Quad which is an approach rooted in communications (stemming from our core competency in unified communication) and video (another area of our expertise is in video conferencing and services). We believe it’s this killer combination of communications and video that will ultimately best define and drive collaboration and, of course, include the ability to access text and content along the way.
A few words about video: we’re seeing it absolutely exploding from a consumer usage standpoint! According to the latest statistics by Comscore, YouTube in the month of August reported that 18.9 billion videos were viewed by 157 million people in the U.S. – that is more than half the U.S. population! And here’s another data point: industry analysts have predicted that by 2012, 90 percent of all content moving over networks will be video content. So video is definitely trending upward in a major way. Now, one could say that this video viewership is from a consumer standpoint and, while that is true, we are also seeing a significant use of video INSIDE the enterprise.
From an enterprise perspective, video is becoming a multi-faceted form of communication. It can be used for everything from executive messaging and company meetings to all types of training and tutorials to product demonstrations and even community involvement. We believe in video as a primary driver in our collaboration solution. (In fact, at Cisco we’ve created a product called “Show and Share” – think of it as a video platform that is as intuitive and as easy to use as YouTube but just for the enterprise – to create, manage, search, and transcribe all of Cisco’s video content. I’ll talk more about this in a future blog).
But video is just one form of content. In IT we also have to manage all other content forms. We recognized early on that Cisco Quad, our collaboration solution, also needed to include written communication such as documents, PowerPoint presentations and email which have been seamlessly integrated. Cisco Quad is also open and interoperable, allowing for integration into standard email solutions and enterprise content management solutions as well as offering secure inter-company capability.
Finally, our integrated workforce experience (IWE) powered by Cisco Quad is an enterprise solution –NOT a point-to-point solution. Collaboration has to be architected for the enterprise and integrated, otherwise each function ends up collaborating using a different point solution. This defeats the purpose of cross-functional collaboration. And keep in mind that this is just internal within the organization. Our ultimate goal is to have company-to-company collaboration.
Next time, I’ll talk about how you get started deploying collaboration. I’m eager to hear your thoughts about collaboration and how you are deploying it in your organization.