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.
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.
Today, we unveiled our plans for Cisco TelePresence and shared our vision for how we will make the “Power of In-Person” accessible to everyone. As my colleague Marthin De Beer recently told you, our destination is beyond the executive boardroom: We’re taking our technology to every desktop and many everywhere in-between.
For five years now, Cisco TelePresence has been empowering people at leading organizations worldwide to work together in new ways to transform business, accelerate innovation, and do more with less. Our focus is on the human experience, and our technology is at the heart of this new way of working together. With Cisco TelePresence, every person, everywhere can be more effective through the most natural and lifelike communications experience available.
Why is it so important for us to take action now, to ensure tens of millions of people around the globe – employees at all levels and companies of all sizes – have access to Cisco TelePresence? Research [link to research] indicates that the number of network-connected devices will be more than 15 billion by 2015 – that’s twice the world’s current population. It’s our job to make it possible for anyone using Cisco WebEx, IP phones, Cius, or any third-party standards-based endpoint to join this community and experience the Power of In-Person firsthand through Cisco TelePresence. Furthermore, as Cisco TelePresence becomes deeply integrated into the way people work, it is critical that our technology becomes even more integrated into existing network and daily collaboration tools.
Over six years ago, I was asked to build and lead a Cisco team to incubate new emerging technologies that can generate $1 billion worth of revenue and enable Cisco to capture key market transitions, driving the network as a platform. Together, this entrepreneurial team investigated market trends and customer needs and quickly realized that video and more specifically video communications was going to be a game changer and transform forever the way people communicate and collaborate. I like to say: words convey meaning; a picture says a thousand words; but video says it all.
That was the start of a vision and idea called telepresence. It’s about delivering a video experience so intuitive, so lifelike and natural that it recreates an in-person experience. Today, TelePresence is a well established market category, in a multi-billion dollar market where Cisco owns over 50% market share. I feel honored and privileged to have been part of this journey with the Cisco team. We have accomplished a lot to be proud of and there is much more to dream and innovate.
I recently had a pleasure of working on the team to delivera Cisco technology showcase for retailers, with the requirements that it is accessible from multiple remote locations and allow large or small parties to have an immersive demonstration experience.
The result is the Retail BDOT (Business Demonstrations over TelePresence). Leveraging Cisco TelePresence technology, we connect visitors to a day in life of a retailer made possible with Cisco technology.
Some of the questions the demonstrations are designed to address include:
Back in July, I wrote about the federal government’s General Services Administration’s (GSA) plan to install 15 telepresence centers in federal buildings around the country. Well, I’m excited to report those sites are up and running!
Outfitted with Cisco TelePresence, the sites allow federal employees to conduct face-to-face, real time meetings with colleagues in faraway locations without incurring any travel expenses. Participants can share electronic documents and presentations, discuss strategy, and look each other in the eye across the virtual table. TheGSA sites are open to employees from agencies that register to use the telepresence system.