At the dawn of the New Year, optimism always runs high. Sometimes it’s warranted; sometimes it’s wishful thinking. In the cloud communications space, it certainly seems warranted – all forecasts are for the industry to continue rapid growth in 2014 and beyond.
There have been numerous forecasts about the anticipated growth of cloud-based unified communications over the next five years or so. And recently, Gartner forecast that 2014 promises to be a good year for IT spending in general, predicting that worldwide spending on IT will rise by 3.1 percent this year. That’s good news for service providers looking to grow their business.
Digging deeper, telecommunications spending, which dipped in 2013, will experience a forecasted increase of 1.2 percent.
More good news.
But of course, this isn't a straight line of growth. Hidden within that number are winners and losers – the world of business communications is in the midst of a titanic transition from old school PBX-based communications to cloud-based unified communications. Interconnects and MSPs that have embraced the cloud are no longer restricted within the telecom box; they are influencing a much wider portion of business activity.
Telecommunications has traditionally been a business cost. Unified communications, on the other hand, is an investment, and one that provides rapid ROI for savvy businesses. Once deployed, it enables a business with far more agility—in both internal and external communications.
“This transition … is also sweeping IT organizations away from their traditional role as a cost center and supporting resource to being front and center as a driver of customer-facing innovation and growth.”
For Interconnects and MSPs, this 180-degree shift in what IT means to an organization is an obvious opportunity. Communications drive much of a business’ operations; it is the definition of how they interact with their customers and prospects. The power of cloud communications to energize that interaction positions Interconnects and MSPs as potentially indispensable service providers.