Collaboration: every deployment is different
Our Head of Marketing and Product Management, David Willie, catches up with AV in …More
Since joining us in 2007 aged 18, our Communication and Collaboration Systems Architect Andy Hirst has gone on to play a significant role in developing our highly innovative video conferencing platform, Convene. We caught up with him to talk about his personal career highlights so far (he recently made the InAvate 40 under 40 list) and the technology trends he predicts will hit their stride in 2020.
Communication and collaboration is at the heart of every successful business. As competition grows and customer expectations rise, it is vital that a business can collaborate effectively. As start-up companies emerge, incumbent organisations are forced to adapt so not to lose market share to the younger, more agile competitors.
I was initially drawn to the fast evolving technologies involved in C&C. In just a few years we have seen the progression of ISDN to HD and now UHD 4K quality video. Cloud services have revolutionised the way we deploy and consume these products, allowing for faster interaction and quicker return on investment.
I also wanted to be involved in something that is fundamental to how a company operates. Unified Communications is not just a simple collection of tools; in order for it to be effective, it needs to become part of the company. With so many options available, it is paramount that a company has a vision for their communication strategy from the start to be truly successful.
The user experience is key to our design philosophy. We strive to make every interaction with our platform as intuitive as possible. Customisability and flexibility is also a key aspect of Convene. All our customers use the platform in a slightly different way. Our job is to support all these use scenarios whilst providing a secure, reliable and easy-to-use service.
Convene has benefitted our clients with many different requirements. We have enabled businesses to communicate with their customers and suppliers across continents, brought life into neglected meeting rooms and consolidated disparate communication technologies through our interop services.
In 2017, I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Computing and Information Technology. This was a tremendous personal achievement and I had great support from Visavvi throughout my study. I was able to incorporate C&C into my dissertation by analysing the effects collaborating has on businesses. During the research for this paper I had the privilege of interviewing leading members of the industry such as Microsoft, Logitech and Pexip.
More recently I have had the pleasure of being featured in Innovate magazine's 40 Under 40 list, which was a huge honour.
Communication and collaboration is a constantly evolving set of technologies. I think the key is providing tools for an increasingly agile workforce. Machine learning is going to be very important this year, giving insights into meeting room usage and how people are interacting with these tools. AI is also going to help hide the technology and eliminate barriers for end-users – and technologies such as Alexa for Business are already being incorporated into products. Exciting times ahead!