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UCaaS: Tailored for Your Vertical Use Case
Cloud-based communications provider Fuze late last month announced plans to deliver tailored solutions for specific verticals, beginning with manufacturing.
Aptly named Fuze for Manufacturing, this platform supplements standard features such as international calling, audio and video meetings, messaging, and an integrated contact center with targeted supply chain, distribution and logistics, and employee capabilities, Fuze said. In addition, Fuze for Manufacturing features integrations with ServiceNow, Microsoft Teams, and other applications commonly used by manufacturing companies, as well as provides pre-built dashboards designed for tracking emergency incidents and location activity.
What’s more, Fuze has expanded hardware partnerships with companies offering ruggedized handhelds and tablets, in-cab devices, and paging and tracking gear, the company said. And, it has tailored a professional services offering around manufacturing needs, such as configuration of DECT systems, remote gateways, and SIP-based paging.
Fuze for Manufacturing is available in Essential and Contact Center licenses, starting at $50 per user monthly, as noted on the Fuze for Manufacturing website.
So, why start here?
Among other verticals Fuze examined, manufacturing has been going through a number of transformations relative to digital operations, adopting and integrating technologies, and looking at ways to automate and improve efficiency due to COVID-19, Rob Scudiere, president and CEO, Fuze, shared in a No Jitter briefing. As an example, he pointed to FLSmidth, a multinational engineering company that is using Fuze for Manufacturing to deliver a consistent user experience to its mobile, frontline, and field service workers, as well as to integrate communications into its business applications.
Fuze might be the latest UCaaS player to unveil a vertical program, but it isn’t the only one trying to increase its competitiveness through such differentiation. RingCentral has a reputation for doing so in the healthcare space, and 8x8 has already succeeded in markets such as retail, healthcare, technology, manufacturing, public sector, and services, said Diane Myers, chief analyst for enterprise collaboration with IT research firm Omdia, an Enterprise Connect/No Jitter sister company. But she cautioned the need to take a close look at these offerings to make sure they aren’t nothing more than lip service — i.e., sales and marketing with no meat.
A vertical-oriented platform must contain specific features, brought to the forefront, for the targeted industry’s use cases. This, plus vertical-appropriate integrations with third-party applications, will show that the UCaaS provider understands what specific requirements make the vertical unique, Myers said.
For the hotel and hospitality industry, a vertical platform should integrate with software for managing rooms, reservations, and housekeeping, for example, while videoconferencing support would be critical in a platform targeted at the healthcare industry. “If you have the ability or resources as a UCaaS company to work with some of this third-party software, tie that in, and make it seamless, then it’s a huge benefit to the customer to go with a provider who’s already done a lot of that work.”