Mitel has partnered with Mart Network, a value-added distributor, to launch remote working & mobility solutions in Africa, following disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, calling for a change in business tact and tools.
The company is investing in new generation tools such as tele- calling, social media, and webinars to align more with the latest market trends.
“Right now, there is a need for flexible home working solutions. The market is ripe for collaborative communication and remote working solutions, smart digital workspaces as well as endpoint security and management solutions,” said Asif Khan, Channel Director, Middle East and Africa (MEA).
Whereas the pandemic has affected virtually all sectors of the economy, notable changes have taken place in the area of IT spending. According to leading marketing research agencies, in the pre-Covid days, spending was more on areas such as government, finance, manufacturing, utilities, and transport. But with Covid-19 having ushered in a new normal, spending has shifted from these traditional verticals to two major ones – healthcare and education. With the global pandemic, IT firms and providers are experiencing heightened demand for a scalable Unified Communication as a Service (UCaaS) portfolio to serve their remote workforce.
These collaborative solutions include mobile apps that can be tied directly into organisations’ workspaces, as today’s technology is geared towards remote working, collaborative efforts, and enhancing online presence.
“Healthcare, education, hospitality, contact centre, SME and mid-market, as well as cloud business, will be the key focus areas for Mitel this year. We create our marketing strategy built around those segments to effectively communicate with our end customers and partners”, said Khan.
The partnership comes at a time when Unified Communication (UC) service providers are experiencing demand for a scalable UCaaS portfolio, which comes at a low cost with a strong presence in instant messaging, mobility, and conferencing services. Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) in the region will also focus on the mid-market and small-to-medium business segments to expand and reduce the dependency on large enterprises.
“Mart Networks has a place for every vendor represented in the collaboration space. Our role is to understand the customer’s business and create a seamless value proposition throughout the collaboration value chain,” Says Moiz Maloo, CEO Mart Networks.
The main driving force behind UCaaS is mobility. Employees today are no longer restricted to traditional office spaces and prefer to work from home and on the go. As such, UCaaS assumes new importance in the organization to stay connected with employees, as the landscape of the traditional office environment changes dramatically.
When people started working remotely, Mitel had to create remote solutions to suit the growing demand for working from home. The growth in demand for UCaas will be driven increasingly by the implementation of hosted solutions as enterprises look to reduce costs and improve productivity.
“Cloud UC makes more sense for large organisations, because their markets are spread over different geographies and diverse user communities, and their communications are unlikely to change for the foreseeable future. With growing concerns on recession and a volatile world economy, the focus of big firms today has been on cost-cutting and reducing expenses as much as possible”, added Khan.
UCaaS market will grow from USD 17.35 Billion (2016) to USD 28.69 Billion by 2021, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 10.6 per cent. Other factors like sluggish economy and superiority of service models may contribute to an even faster uptake of UCaaS than anticipated as businesses that may have previously deployed an on-premises solution may opt instead to deploy UCaaS.