The job description for the conferencing service owner could be a bit of a mystery in many enterprises, so I am going to try to demystify the role based on my experience as a Video and UC Conference Service owner at Cisco IT.
The goal for the Video and UC conferencing service manager is to give enterprise users the flexibility to conference with anyone, anywhere, anytime, with any (or right) device, with an experience that helps users have a successful interaction without worrying about the technology, and with the best service level agreement (SLA) possible for that service.
Here’s how that plays out at Cisco:
- Anyone: In Cisco IT, our goal is to enable employees to easily connect to coworkers as well as customers, partners and vendors.
- Anywhere: Employees can connect from a Cisco office, a customer or partner’s office, home, or a public Wi-Fi network, securely.
- Any device: A Cisco employee might be using Cisco TelePresence, WebEx, Movi, a Cius tablet, or Cisco Unified IP Phone 9900. The Conferencing Service provides a seamless means to connect and collaborate.
- SLAs that vary by experience: People today understand that their experience in an immersive Cisco TelePresence session will be different than that in a WebEx session, for instance.
The bottom line is that the service owner makes the user experience simple, easy to use and valuable to business. Users just want to be able to click to collaborate with a team member, without having to worry where she is and what type of video capabilities she has.
Where to Begin
Video and UC Conferencing service owners typically begin by taking stock of the various service offerings already available throughout the enterprise. It’s not unusual to discover a jumble of phone and videoconferencing systems, and multiple call control systems.
Knowing what’s out there, the service owner can decide which conferencing experiences to simplify first. In Cisco IT, we make that decision based on the business value of the investment. In a future blog I’ll explain how we go about measuring the business value of telepresence services.