The innovation focus of enterprise communications vendors ebbs and flows in waves. Those waves can crest at the annual Enterprise Connect conference. As I think back over previous Enterprise Connects, there were years where certain technologies, such as VoIP, SIP, video, messaging, WebRTC, and others dominated the expo hall chatter, keynotes, announcements, and sessions.
This year’s conference is rapidly approaching, and the conversations have yet to start, but it’s clear that customer experience will be a dominant theme at Enterprise Connect 2022.
The EC leadership team had a hunch. That’s why I selected customer engagement for the theme of the Innovation Showcase. The theme of the showcase changes each year. So do the judges to ensure we have subject matter experts evaluating the applications.
If you are not familiar with the Innovation Showcase, it highlights a handful of “new,” innovative companies that we feel deserve an introduction to the EC audience. The “new” part is what makes the Innovation Showcase unique. It’s specifically designed to identify companies new to Enterprise Connect. Prior exhibitors are not eligible for the Innovation Showcase. Normally, it’s completely new exhibitors, but this year we opted to extend eligibility to also include last year’s virtual exhibitors.
The 2022 Innovation Showcase had 21 applications. Each company was evaluated by our three judges in three different ways: innovation, enterprise fit, and business value — that’s 63 total scores per judge. Our judges deserve recognition for volunteering their time and expertise. They took their roles seriously, blocked out the necessary time, and in many cases went well beyond the submitted applications in order to evaluate the companies.
The judges for the Innovation Showcase 2022 were Beth English
, Art Schoeller
, and Sheila McGee-Smith
. Beth is an active consultant that works with organizations of all sizes on their communications requirements and implementations. Art recently retired from Forrester Research where he covered unified communications and contact centers. Sheila is a contact center industry analyst as well as a regular contributor to both Enterprise Connect and No Jitter
. The judges were transparent with each other, and seemed largely in-sync with their scoring.
Unlike the EC Best of Show award, we announce the Innovation Showcase companies in advance of the conference. Each of these companies will be at Enterprise Connect and you can meet them all in the Innovation Showcase session on Monday morning
. In the session, each company will present who they are and what they do. This session is open to all registered attendees — even those with only Expo Plus badges.
Below are the Innovation Showcase companies for Enterprise Connect 2022. They are listed alphabetically as Showcase companies are not ranked.
- Airkit offers a building block approach that simplifies the development and integration of service applications. It simplifies how enterprises can enable consumers to make a purchase, enroll in a plan, track an order, or change a reservation across multiple channels.
- Balto offers real-time guidance software that uses AI to listen to the conversation, and offers up relevant assistance to agents. Balto coaches, but also learns as it continuously evaluates the effectiveness of specific phrases.
- Cognigy offers an enterprise platform for conversational intelligence that enables businesses to build advanced, integrated conversational solutions for automated customer or employee services. The platform features a low-code graphical editor for simplified creation of human-like, multilingual and multi-channel virtual bots.
- Invoca offers an AI-powered conversational intelligence platform that can analyze customer conversations. Invoca offers insights and the necessary tools to deliver a seamless customer experience across digital and human touchpoints.
- Pathlight helps customer-facing employees understand their performance and provides tips for improvements. Its personalized command center provides individual and team performance data that includes real-time data analysis, communications, AI coaching, predictive goal setting, and more.
- UJET offers a mobile-first CCaaS service that supports advanced, mobile features such as Face ID authentication, video calling, tap-to-pay, and rich messaging. On the back-end, UJET offers a highly reliable architecture across multiple cloud-providers.
Dave Michels is the Director of the Innovation Showcase and an analyst at TalkingPointz.