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Redefining Video: Highlights of Cisco’s Recent Enterprise Video News

Cisco continues to expand and enrich its enterprise video offerings.  This week, you’ve heard about the fifth year anniversary of Cisco TelePresence.  Last month, you heard about our end-to-end solutions for Enterprise Video Content.  In the video below, I  summarize some of the highlights of the Enterprise Video Content roundtable and how both of Cisco’s recent video announcements broaden our video portfolio and create more options for our customers.

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Collaboration: The Cure for a Rollercoaster Economy

Today, we’re featuring a guest post from Rick Hutley, a vice president in Cisco’s global strategic consulting arm, IBSG. Rick advises business leaders in every industry about how technology—and more often than not, Intelligent Network technology—can help businesses achieve their goals.

As we embark on yet another economic rollercoaster, the goal of dramatically reducing costs while simultaneously growing revenues and market share seems impossible to attain. Yet, this is what businesses must do to survive.

In my opinion, the answer to this dichotomy is “collaboration”—enabling your workforce to be more effective at significantly lower costs. Collaboration can deliver significant benefits. Cisco®, for example, realized $1.4 billion in collaboration benefits in FY2010, up from $1.1 billion in FY2009. This was achieved across 27 initiatives at an annual cost of only $128 million.

These findings are detailed in a report titled “Economics of Collaboration at Cisco” by the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG), with analysis from its Research & Economics Practice. While every company is different, the following Cisco examples from this report offer a compelling business case for adopting similar initiatives where you work.

  • Business travel optimization to enable greater collaboration across regions while containing travel costs resulted in expense savings of $519 million per year and time savings of $140 million per year.
  • Telecommuting initiatives to increase productivity, tap global talent, and improve sustainability resulted in time savings of $320 million per year for Cisco and commute cost savings of $49 million per year for employees.
  • Connected Workplace, Cisco’s solution for optimizing knowledge worker productivity in the office, generated a 43 percent reduction in space per worker, real estate savings of $33 million per year, and energy savings of $2 million per year.
  • Next-generation Unified Communications resulted in salesforce time savings of $27 million per year and improved customer service.
  • Faster time-to-market capabilities with improved remote collaboration accelerated the introduction of Cisco’s ASR 9000, increasing margins by $90 million, reducing time to market from 4 to 3 years, and lowering R&D costs by $70 million.

To achieve these results, Cisco employed much of its own technology. Cisco TelePresence®, for example, powers a new way of working that allows us to be more productive through face-to-face, two-way video collaboration. Cisco WebEx® enables us to hold highly effective team meetings by sharing information whether we are using a desktop computer, laptop, or smartphone. Cisco Unified Communications links our phone, email, and other communications systems so we never have to miss a call or wait until a colleague gets back to his or her desk to respond to a critical email. And finally, Cisco QuadTM provides a single, integrated experience where individuals, teams, and communities connect, share, learn, and collaborate.

In today’s volatile economy, it’s clear we must learn how to collaborate better. Fortunately, technologies like those employed by Cisco can give your company an edge by improving competitiveness, innovation, and, most important, business results.

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How Does Cisco Simplify Unified Communications for Mid-size Business?

We sat down with Marc Ayers, Senior Manager of Product Marketing, to better understand how Cisco simplifies unified communications for the mid-size business.

Leading into our upcoming news about offerings for our mid-size business customers, we are conducting a series of interviews with members of our product teams so get their insights into unified communications from a mid-size business and Cisco perspective.

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If You Freelance, Here’s How to Collaborate Efficiently

Freelancing can be a great way to work. You don’t have to live by corporate edicts, you have the freedom to choose your work (well, at least you like to pretend you do – any freelancer knows you rarely turn down an assignment!) and you can work when and where you like.

Of course, there are challenges: getting work, keeping clients and figuring out how to collaborate in an efficient way. As any freelancer knows, time is money and driving to see clients can burn a good chunk of a day that could otherwise be used to get the work done!

Lorie Vela at Collaborationideas.com makes this observation:

Being a freelancer is already hard enough made even harder by adding new tasks and complicated operations when it comes to contacting, interacting and communicating with others. But the truth is that freelancers know better than anyone else what collaboration is all about, because being a freelancer means having to co-work with others, whether they are clients, customers, providers, etc, you always need to send files, emails, manage contacts, share, . Obviously, there’s a need to count on reliable tools and resources to work, but how about the planning and strategy to make it easier?

I’m surprised by how many freelancers collaborate in a very intuitive way, without even noticing they are doing so, they simply call it work. But knowing that you are “collaborating” could probably help you understand why sometimes things go wrong, why communication fails, why organizing tasks seems sometimes like an impossible issue to get resolved in time.

We want to help you collaborate effectively.

Using online meetings can save you tons of time. You don’t have to travel and you can meet with anyone who has a computer or internet device (think phone, iPad, etc.).You can use your webcam to make the meeting personal and share drafts, thumbnails, and more because online meetings let you show whatever is on your computer to your participants. And they can share too.

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Driving Global Growth in Customer Collaboration

Today I’m boarding a flight to London, where I’ll spend the next few days meeting with analysts, consultants, and the press to highlight how the United Kingdom is a key growth area for Customer Collaboration and Cisco’s contact center business in general.  I’ll also be spending time with key customers and partners as we continue to focus on their success in customer collaboration.  I always enjoy meeting with our customers, so I’m really looking forward to having a “fireside chat” with UK-based SpecSavers, who have proven very successful with our customer collaboration solutions.  In the end, customer successes like this are what’s fueling Cisco’s rise to the top.

Of course, we have seen significant customer successes across all of our geographic theaters, with lighthouse customer wins, major shifts in partner mindshare and wallet share, as well as awards and other recognition.  Along with these key global proof points, we have seen that the foundation for our march to #1 has already been strongly set in North America, where our market-changing delivery of Customer Collaboration has been affirmed by the press and industry analysts.

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