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It’s Time to Re-Engage on Strategy

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The COVID-19 pandemic put enterprise communications strategic planning on the back burner while organizations got employees set up on remote collaboration, but now is a good time to revisit the larger picture for your enterprise’s long-term roadmap.
 
The pandemic tipped the balance toward work from home (WFH), which caused some serious immediate disruption both to enterprises’ internal communications and to contact centers. But the forces driving the longer-term transformation of communications/collaboration arguably haven’t changed that much from the trajectory on which they were headed before March. The last five months may have just accelerated trends like the shift to cloud and the emerging potential for API-enabled embedded communications.
 
So what principles should guide communications/IT decision-makers as they return to their strategy drawing boards?
 
The next seminar in the Premium program of our Enterprise Connect Digital Conference & Expo 2020 is designed to give you this strategic perspective, and to help you look beyond the near-term effects of the pandemic. Marty Parker, founder and principal of UniComm Consulting and a founder at BCStrategies, will walk you through the stages and decision points that you’ll need to confront as you adjust and advance your enterprise communications strategy. Marty has always been one of our most-effective experts when it comes to casting current technology and market trends in their strategic context and helping enterprise decision-makers understand what to do on a step-by-step basis to activate that strategy.
 
Marty presents a useful framework for understanding how the different levels of organizational engagement provide a range of results. If the enterprise goal is to use communications technology to drive fundamental business transformation, communications professionals will likely need to engage enterprise leaders outside of the IT department — essentially, the business units. In other enterprises, organizations may focus within IT, seeking to coordinate the communications team’s directions with broader IT strategies. And finally, some transformations will focus more tightly on the communications organization itself, a strategy that primarily emphasizes cost control.
 
These organizational strategies correspond to technology roadmap strategies. Marty has some great detailed slides showing which technologies — and therefore which strategic vendors — will be critical to your enterprise, depending on which of these three levels your organization is mainly targeting.
 
The pandemic and its effects will be with us for some time, it looks like, and we’re all sick of phrases like “new normal.” I think Marty’s session on strategy will help enterprise communications professionals reframe the issue. It’s not so much about a “new normal”; it’s about how the ongoing “normal” is pushing enterprise communications in some slightly new directions, and maybe doing so faster than we’re used to seeing technology evolve. But the challenges for communications strategy haven’t changed: Transform the business, align with broader IT, and invest wisely in technology and human resources.

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