UC Advanced - issue #9

Issue #9


News, analysis, insights and more

Sh aking up Nuvias UC

See pages 12-15


Shying Away from Solutions

It may be a small problem, but it is part of a wider trend; especially in the context of bringing employees back into the office. At its heart, technology needs to be simple, and when they work, Teams Rooms, Zoom Rooms, Webex Rooms, and any other type of meeting space are seamless. But the fear of what happens when the meeting doesn’t start is what is making people move away from the Meeting Room and into the comfort of a personal computer. I may be banging on about this subject now, but it’s something that we are all affected by, and the vendors know it. I’m often shown around the idyllic office spaces of global companies, where each hot desking booth has everything that employees need to sit down and get on with some work before moving on to a collaboration space booked well in advance. That isn’t necessarily an answer for the average business. Employees don’t need a lot of nice technology to work in an office. It may help them and give them a better experience, but I don’t think I’ve ever joined a company and had a colleague rave about the conferencing system to me on my first day; in fact, the sentiment towards office technology is usually negative. Now that the free lunch idea has run its course, the question of motivating people to come into the office has almost ended. Frankly, it seems leaders have the choice to entice their employees with nice things or their jobs. On that note, I’ll leave you to it! We have a great edition this month with features on cybersecurity, healthcare, and manufacturing, and I was able to catch up with Nuvias UC CEO Joel Chimoindes after a year in the big chair! As always, you can catch me via email at elliot@ucadvanced.com, it’ll be great to hear from you!

As technology evolves and new features are developed, it appears to leave people behind. Whether that’s in the hardware or the software, we will all be able to name a platform or piece of technology on which we stopped adopting the new and stuck to what we were comfortable with.

Elliot Mulley-Goodbarne Editor

Discord and Twitch were a bridge too far for me. Although I try to use them to watch some streamers, the whole ecosystem is foreign to me, so I’ll stick to Instagram and YouTube. But when you factor in Moore’s Law and the improvements that people may be missing out on, it does appear to be a crying shame that some people are just left behind. In the business world, it’s more than a shame; it’s a hindrance. Whether IT can be called to help, the disruption it causes does impact the meeting, shortening it and often changing the tone as participants wait to get going. In and of itself, you could argue that the individual should find a way to work with these technologies. They are, after all, designed to be a one-touch solution if you listen to the manufacturers. Yet time and time again, I hear about participants being scared to go near the tablet in the middle of the room, opting for someone else to risk doing something wrong when they try to join the meeting.


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News You should know p6 Profile: Nuvias UC A year in review p12 Healthcare Head(ache) in the clouds p18 Thought Leadership The advantages of M2M solutions p21 Switch Off Transitioning to digital telephony p22 Cybersecurity Intelligent security p24 Shure Open to All p30 Thought Leadership AI augmentation p34 Mobility Staying within arms reach p36 Collaboration Building productive teams p43 Workforce The next generation p47 Product Review Logitech MX Brio 705 4K Webcam p50

How does mobile fit into the collaboration puzzle?



How Artificial Intelligence is both a help and a hindrance to attempts to secure the business.



Logitech recently launched the MX Brio 705, a top-tier webcam designed to meet the demands of high-end users and enterprise-level needs.

Jim Palmer, Chief AI Officer at Dialpad shows us how humans and robots can work together


The Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) in the UK is undergoing a significant transformation. need to know:

Written permission from the publisher is required before any part of UC Advanced can be reproduced. © 2024 In the Channel Media Ltd. Editorial Elliot Mulley- Goodbarne 07910 441 024 elliot@ucadvanced.com Dan Parton 07941 979 845 dan@ucadvanced.com Head of Sales Martin Jenner-Hall 07824 552 116 martin@ucadvanced.com Publishing Director Justin Penn 07816 573 186 justin@ucadvanced.com




How Logitech are ushering in a workforce of enthusiasts.

How Cloud Technology holds the key to a better Healthcare Service.


Published by: In the Channel Media Ltd Company registration number: 14363401 Registered office address 14-18 Heddon Street,


After just a year in the CEO chair, Joel Chimoindes is shaking up Nuvias UC.

Mayfair, London, United Kingdom, W1B 4DA In conjunction with:




Sage Launches Accounting and HR Suites in the UK and Canada to Empower SMBs Sage for Accountants streamlines client management and boosts efficiency, allowing

Sage has launched two new suites in the UK and Canada, designed to transform the operations and growth of small and mid- sized businesses (SMBs) and accountancy practices. The new products, Sage for Accountants and Sage for Small Business bring together award-winning accounting, HR, and business management tools to create scalable solutions. The suites feature three customisable membership plans, Essentials, Standard, and Premium, that allow users to manage subscriptions with a single monthly invoice. Neal Watkins, EVP of Accounting and HR at Sage, said, “With these new suites, we are making it easier for data and work to flow between our products, helping accountants, bookkeepers, and SMBs to do more, easily and efficiently. Our goal is to eliminate complexity and enhance the value of human work.”

accountants to focus more on strategic advisory services. Sage for Small Business provides SMBs a one-stop solution for managing cash flow, payroll, and HR. It aims to simplify repetitive tasks and ensure compliance with tax and payroll regulations. Additionally, Sage announced Sage Copilot, a generative AI-powered productivity assistant designed to automate routine administrative tasks and offer real-time business insights. Sage Copilot will be available in the UK in 2024 and will expand to Canada. Sage’s new suites offer scalable, integrated solutions to help SMBs and accountancy practices work more efficiently and focus on what matters most.

Alibaba Cloud Unveils New Developments in Large Language Models

Alibaba Cloud, the technology arm of Alibaba Group, has announced significant advancements in its Qwen family of large language models (LLMs), which have had over 90,000 enterprise deployments since last June. The popular models, known as “Tongyi Qianwen” in China, are widely used across consumer electronics, automobiles, and gaming industries. In response to the growing demand for AI solutions, Alibaba Cloud has introduced Qwen2.5, a new model with enhanced reasoning, code comprehension, and textual understanding capabilities. This upgrade is part of Alibaba’s ongoing commitment to developing and sharing AI technology. Jingren Zhou, Alibaba Cloud’s CTO, expressed excitement over the Qwen family’s success, highlighting its innovative applications across industries. He added, “We will continue contributing a diverse array of AI models to the open-source communities.” Xiaomi, a leading consumer electronics company, has integrated Alibaba Cloud’s models into its AI assistant, Xiao Ai, providing unique features like voice-activated image

generation in smart electric vehicles. Perfect World Games, a Chinese gaming company, has also adopted Qwen for game development, enabling advanced plot, dialogue, and animation generation. Alibaba Cloud’s Model Studio, an AI development platform, has received a comprehensive update. The platform now offers a wider range of models and sophisticated tools to aid developers in creating AI-based applications. The platform features high-calibre third-party models and advanced developer tools like LlamaIndex, an open-source framework designed to improve LLMs for application development. Alibaba Cloud has released several Qwen models, including Qwen1.5-110B, with 110 billion parameters, and CodeQwen1.5-7B, optimised for coding tasks to support the open-source community. The company plans to share additional models in the coming months, including seven billion-parameter and 72 billion-parameter variants. These efforts underscore Alibaba Cloud’s commitment to fostering innovation and collaboration in the AI space.

Jingren Zhou CTO







ServiceNow and Microsoft Join Forces to Integrate Generative AI Assistants for Enhanced Productivity

ServiceNow has announced a partnership with Microsoft at the annual customer and partner event, Knowledge 2024. The two tech giants are joining forces to bring their leading generative AI capabilities together, introducing an integrated experience that combines ServiceNow’s Now Assist with Microsoft’s Copilot. This strategic alliance aims to create a seamless enterprise environment, making it easier for employees to increase productivity and improve workflow efficiency. Integrating Now Assist with Microsoft’s Copilot within Microsoft 365 provides employees with a unified AI-powered assistant to help with everyday productivity tasks. This integration allows for a more holistic experience, as employees can access the best of both AI assistants from within a single platform. Whether resolving customer support issues or creating PowerPoint presentations, employees can accomplish tasks more efficiently with reduced context switching. CJ Desai, president and chief operating officer at ServiceNow, noted the potential impact of the partnership: “We strongly believe that the next shift in generative AI will result from the collaboration of industry leaders putting AI to work for their customers. “With Microsoft as our partner, we’re enabling a smarter way to work, where generative AI assistants can cohabitate and interact to unlock new productivity levels.”

Rajesh Jha, executive vice president of Experiences + Devices at Microsoft, echoed the sentiment, emphasising the value of the collaboration: “The seamless integration of our AI-powered assistants will help usher in improved levels of employee and IT productivity, reduce context switching, and ensure easier execution of everyday work tasks, adding to the value of our customers’ technology investments.” The integration allows Copilot in Microsoft Teams to seamlessly hand off employee requests to Now Assist, enabling quick problem resolution and even the option to connect with a live agent for more complex issues. This capability combines Now Assist’s enterprise domain knowledge with Microsoft’s data from chats, emails, calendars, and files, creating a conversational experience that streamlines employee workflow. The new integration between Now Assist and Microsoft Copilot will be generally available in the Autumn of 2024, marking a significant step in the evolving partnership between ServiceNow and Microsoft, which has been ongoing since 2019. Microsoft was also recognised with the 2024 ServiceNow Innovation and Build Partner of the Year award at the Knowledge 2024 event, further underscoring the strength of this partnership and its potential to transform how businesses operate in the age of AI.

CJ Desai President and COO


Exertis Enterprise Unveils Major Expansion of Integration Facility in Basingstoke

Exertis Enterprise has announced a significant expansion of its Integration Facility in Basingstoke, drastically boosting its capacity to provide technology integration, configuration, logistics, and manufacturing services. This expansion quadruples the facility’s output, enabling the company to better serve vendors and customers across the UK and EMEA. With an annual capacity of 20,000 server and storage units, the new facility allows Exertis Enterprise to increase inventory, responsiveness, and delivery speeds. It also

opens up opportunities for additional services like rack-scale integration and subcontract manufacturing. The facility’s layout includes extensive integration suites, testing labs, and dedicated spaces for product demonstrations and training, ensuring products meet rigorous quality standards. Tom Cox, Commercial Director at Exertis Enterprise, highlighted the importance of the expansion: “This expansion reflects our commitment to excellence and provides an environment for our team to excel.” The relocation within Basingstoke also benefits



Exertis’s finance, logistics, and purchasing teams, offering a modern workspace to foster collaboration and productivity. Strategically located for optimal logistics and distribution, the upgraded facility reinforces Exertis Enterprise’s role as a leader in technology solutions distribution. “This milestone represents a significant investment in our future and a true commitment to our partners to support their growth aspirations,”

Cox added. With the expansion now complete, Exertis Enterprise aims to provide advanced technology integration and distribution services, enhancing its ability to exceed partner and customer expectations. This development positions the company to continue leading the industry in technology solutions while offering a broad range of services to meet the evolving needs of vendors and customers.

Evolve IP Projects Five Million More Users for Cloud Collaboration in Coming Years

Evolve IP’s EMEA Partner Day, held at the Williams Formula 1 Experience Centre, revealed key industry insights that cloud collaboration is on track to attract five million more users by 2028. This surge, part of a race among cloud providers to win new customers, is a central finding from the event, which drew over 150 attendees from across Europe. The cloud collaboration specialist, Evolve IP, shared its vision of a rapidly evolving landscape where traditional on-premise communication systems give way to Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS), driven by the power of artificial intelligence. According to market analysts at the Cavell Group, cloud communication adoption is expected to grow from 10.9 million users this year to 15.9 million by 2028, with the market value reaching £1.86 billion. Paul Harrison, Evolve IP’s EMEA Managing Director, likened the company’s approach to Formula 1 racing, emphasising the drive to innovate and stay ahead of the competition. “We’re not afraid to push the boundaries, drive forward, and adapt just like F1,” he said. “We want to win. We want to be the best. Just like a race team, we’re evolving all the time and never stop, nor does the competition.” Evolve IP’s international network operates in 57 countries, providing a central resource for resellers. The company has also positioned itself as an ethical and sustainable enterprise with a carbon-neutral vision. Harrison highlighted that among the 107 UK cloud providers, Evolve IP is part of a dominant top 10, holding over 60% of the market share.

During the event, Evolve IP’s UK Sales Director, Jamie Hughes, spoke about the importance of collaborative partnerships, describing them as “a bit like a marriage,” requiring agility and adaptability to meet different needs. He mentioned that the company is targeting growth in sectors like retail, hospitality, education, and healthcare, as well as exploring an ‘untapped’ opportunity with Cisco. The event featured presentations on the latest trends in UCaaS and AI-driven communication. Experts from Cisco and Dubber discussed how AI will “super-charge” communications. Panel discussions delved into the challenges and opportunities ahead and how existing partners are achieving success. The day concluded with an awards ceremony and entertainment, including a pit stop challenge where participants raced to change all four tyres on a Grand Prix car. The event, supported by technology partners like Akixi, iTel, Dubber, and others, underscored the competitive and innovative spirit driving Evolve IP’s success in the cloud collaboration sector.

Paul Harrison EMEA Managing Director





Exertis Raises £125,000 for Mental Health UK, Shifts Focus to Local Charities for FY25

Exertis announced it has raised £125,000 for Mental Health UK, marking the conclusion of its FY24 charity partnership. The funds raised through various employee- led initiatives will be used to support the charity’s mission to improve mental health awareness and support services. Exertis has decided to change its charitable approach for the upcoming financial year. Instead of supporting one national charity, the company’s employees voted to select eight local charities for fundraising support. These organisations include six hospices, a homeless charity, and a teenage cancer charity. The full list of beneficiaries includes St Michael’s Hospice in Basingstoke, East Lancashire Hospice in Burnley, Overgate Hospice in Elland, St Clare Hospice in Harlow, Prospect Hospice for Hypertec, Teens Unite for MTR, The Big Issue in Snetterton, and DougieMac in Stoke. Michaela DeGale, Charity and Volunteering Lead at Exertis UK explained the decision to support multiple local charities: “We are committed to supporting the local communities

around our offices in the UK. This year, we are excited to be supporting smaller, local charities through a variety of fundraising efforts. “Our employees are dedicated to finding innovative ways to fundraise and volunteer, and we believe that by working together, we can make a positive impact on the lives of those around us.” Exertis’s fundraising efforts for Mental Health UK in the past year included a wide range of activities, from golf days and bake sales to raffles, tech sales, and dress-down days. These creative approaches not only raised significant funds but also helped to engage employees in the cause. Rob Harding, Partnerships Manager at Mental Health UK, expressed his gratitude to Exertis, saying, “We really cannot thank the people of Exertis enough for their dedication, passion, and desire to improve the lives of people affected by poor mental health. Thank you so much for having been our charity partner and for continuing to make mental health a priority within Exertis.”


Daisy Group Merges with Wavenet to Create £1bn IT and Cloud Services Entity grew by approximately 27% to £417m in

Daisy Group has announced a significant merger with Wavenet. This strategic move involves separating Daisy Corporate Services (DCS) from Daisy Group and integrating it into Wavenet. The new combined entity, retaining the name Wavenet, is expected to serve over 20,000 UK enterprise customers, including the NHS and Transport for London.* The merger positions the new Wavenet with an estimated value of over £1bn, with Macquarie as the largest individual shareholder. The deal is also supported by debt financing from Ares. Bill Dawson, Wavenet’s executive chairman, will continue to lead the company, while Matthew Riley, founder and chairman of Daisy Group, will take on a non-executive director role. Daisy Group, initially listed on the London public market, became privately owned in 2014 with support from Toscafund Asset Management. The group’s overall revenue

2023, driven by Connectivity and IT services growth. Daisy Group has two divisions: Daisy Corporate Services (DCS), catering to the mid to enterprise market, and its Small to Medium Enterprises (SME) business. One challenge for Daisy Group has been its significant debt balance of £462m, accumulated through a series of acquisitions. Notable purchases include the XLN Group in 2022, cyber security service provider ECSC Group in 2023, and cloud communications provider 4Com for £215m in April 2024. The merger with Wavenet signifies Daisy’s strategic move towards strengthening its position in the IT and cloud services industry. The combined entity aims to leverage Wavenet’s established customer base and expertise in providing advanced IT, communications, and cloud solutions.

Matthew Riley Founder and Chairman




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A Year in Review After just a year in the CEO chair, Joel Chimoindes is shaking up Nuvias UC.

As the days begin to get longer, the temperature begins to grow and, most importantly, the cricket season begins, I’m sure I’m not the only one to say “How is it May already?” Yet here we are, comfortably a quarter of the way through the year, wondering where the time has gone and what position we’ll be in by the end of it. One man who knows all too well how quickly the year can roll around is the CEO of Nuvias UC, Joel Chimoindes, who celebrated a year in the job by inviting partners to the Park Plaza Hotel in London. The event was split into a morning session in which representatives from key partners opened up to the audience about the direction of the market, plans for the future, and whether they like Marmite before a handful of break- out sessions focussing on key topics like the PSTN Switch off, Customer Experience and Contact Centre to name a few. While the market continues to throw up trends for businesses to deal with, within Nuvias UC, Chimoindes said that a lot has changed in a year too. “Internally, we came in and put a new executive team in place, including a new CFO, a new CCO, and a new COO, to help us shape the business as we wanted it to be,” said Chimoindes.

“We’ve made some operational changes, which have given us a great platform to add additional automation and digitalisation to our business. This really takes cost out of the more systemic parts of the business for both us and our partners.” With a restructuring out of the way, Chimoindes was clear to make the announcement that the distributor will be focussing on four key areas within Converged Communications, each with their own team to give partners all they need to succeed in this challenging market. “The most significant change we’ve made is how we believe that we’re going deeper with specialisation and our business. “Those four areas that make up converged communications are UCaaS, CCaaS, telephony, and what we call spaces, all of which are underpinned with services. We’ve reorganised our business into these specialist business units that will focus on those key areas. “Inside those key areas, we have vendor management, pre-sales, BDM, marketing support, and alignment around the back office. All that’s been underpinned by our services business as well, which is obviously services just through the channel. “What does this mean for our partners, it means that we can provide them a much

Joel Chimoindes CEO


We’ve made some operational changes, which have given us a great platform to add additional automation and digitalisation to our business.

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deeper level of specialisation to enhance their business, especially when they’re starting to look at new solutions and new opportunities. We’ve got a great technical team and business development managers that can stand alongside partners to help.” Specialist Subject The decision to create departments within the distributor has come about in order to provide resellers with the ability to offer any solution as everyone gets to grips with a converging market. Each department within it will have a structured sales team with department- specific expertise for resellers to grow with and utilise as they grow. In addition to this service, Chimoindes committed to “selectively expanding our vendor portfolio” to the resellers in the room, adding, “Our strategy and Nuvias UC is not to offer loads of competing vendors; we want to add complementary vendors to our solution portfolio. “We want deep relationships with our partners; that’s a mark of success for us, and the more time we can spend with our partners, the more opportunities we can generate together.” To the layman, offering solutions from both Microsoft and Zoom may appear to contradict its policy of not including vendors that compete against each other. However, according to the Nuvias UC CEO, both solutions have carved out their own niches within the UC&C industry. “If you’d asked me that question 12 or 18 months ago, I might say that, because of where they both were in their lifecycles, there was a lot more competition in terms of what they did. “But now, Zoom sits alongside Teams in many ways. Many organisations are using Teams for their chat and file management, for example, but they’re also using Zoom for telephony and CX experience. “I don’t think these are competing as overall platforms, they’ve now got their own spaces to sit in and exist in. Of course, the meeting side of things is a competitive landscape, but the platform of choice for an end user will dictate what meeting room solutions they have, if they’ve already got a Zoom environment integrated into their workflow, they’re probably not going to go and swap all of that out to put Teams in, and vice versa.

“I think that’s the difference. Now, if it comes down to a straight shootout with an end user about whether they are going to put in an NTR or a Zoom Room, that will come down to personal preference.” The More Things Change While the competitive forces of Teams and Zoom may have found a way to coexist, the next battleground to fight on has emerged, called Artificial Intelligence. Chimoindes much more graciously referred to these battlegrounds as “inflection points” but went on to say that AI should not be the topic of conversation when we talk about… well, AI. “I heard an analyst say IoT and the metaverse were potentially two inflexion points that perhaps didn’t quite happen,” said Chimoindes. “They’ve been steady in what they’ve delivered, but they were expected to be a little bit bigger than what they’ve delivered. They haven’t been an inflection point. “Undoubtedly AI is an inflection point, and we’re just at the start of what that can do. I mentioned in my keynote that 12 months ago, when I stood there and talked about what AI was going to do in the future, around collaboration and CX solutions; twelve months on, we’re there. “What’s interesting is that we’re talking about the technology. Actually, what we should be talking about is productivity, because that’s what AI should be driving for people. So we’re helping the channel understand how they can help their end users be more productive with AI. I think that’s the inflection point, and it’s the opportunity as well.” The More They Stay The Same The inflection point of Artificial Intelligence is certainly one that Chimoindes is looking to capitalise on. These inflection points keep coming, bringing with them opportunities for the channel to reach out to businesses and create value for the vendor partners at the heart of the new Nuvias UC structure.

What’s interesting is that we’re talking about the technology. Actually, what we should be talking about is productivity, because that’s what AI should be driving for people.







I think that the development of people is hugely important, and giving people opportunities to grow and develop as individuals is hugely important.

It could be great expertise in logistics or standing alongside a reseller to help them with opportunities, connecting partners to vendors, or helping partners generate end- user opportunities. So value comes in many different forms of distribution. “Every successful distributor today is successful because they deliver value in a way that is suitable for them and their partners. I think distribution will always evolve alongside the channel, which is why it is here to stay.” Building Trust Although he may not be around longer than distribution, Chimoindes himself spoke about his ambitions for his time in the big chair at Nuvias US. While only a year in the job, it’s clear to see that the CEO had a plan and has largely executed it within a relatively small time frame, an impressive feat in a business that generated over £100 million in revenues in the last financial year. According to Chimoindes, above all else, a sense of trust within the team spurs such success, which he says he’d like to be remembered for. “The organisation and people are everything,” said Chimoindes, “I think that the development of people is hugely important, and giving people opportunities to grow and develop as individuals is hugely important. “When you’re looking at how to change culture, the number one thing you have to have in any organisation or any team is trust. So we’ve built a trusting environment that ensures people can speak without fear of consequences, making sure that we’ve got an organisation where people trust each other and understand each other as well. “If we can foster a culture inside Nuvias UC, that gives everyone the ability to be the best version of themselves, whatever that is, and how they want to grow and develop would make me pleased.”

Vendors have woken up to the value of channel resellers. A prime example is Zoom’s emphasis on building a partner ecosystem over the last couple of years as it looks to grow at scale. “I think if you look at startup companies, they go through that lifecycle of growing by selling direct because that’s the natural model,” said Chimoindes. “But then they reach a maturity point where they know they need to scale, which is where the channel comes in and should become an extension of the vendors’ own capability. “I’m by no means calling Zoom a start up, but it becomes quite expensive for a vendor to grow by selling direct. If you treat the channel in the right way, help the channel make margin, help them create opportunities, and help them be different from their competitors. That’s how vendors truly scale as well.”

I’m by no means calling Zoom a start up, but it becomes quite expensive for a vendor to grow by selling direct.

Shifting the Narrative Along with the resellers, Chimoindes said that distribution provides value to the vendors they serve, adding that the practice will never go away. “The story of distribution is such an interesting one because whenever there’s been an inflexion point around the market and technology, everyone predicts the end of distribution. Thankfully, that’s not happened, and I don’t think it will happen because distribution will always evolve to deliver value to the channel. “Value comes in many different ways.

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Head(ache) in the Clouds

How Cloud Technology holds the key to a better Healthcare Service.

Customer service may not be the first thing that you think of when your arm is hanging off or your baby has decided to finally arrive, but in many ways, it is the ultimate test of experience. Now, if you come away with a beautiful bundle of joy in your arms, it’s safe to say you’re happy with the result, even if the experience was tumultuous. If you come out with one less limb than you had going in, you may come away with a different opinion. I can tell these equations are getting tedious, especially from a childless bloke with all his limbs, but you get the point. Lately, it seems that the healthcare industry is struggling with a customer experience issue, especially when it comes to local practices. While attempts to quell demand on doctors like the 111 service are helpful, my personal experience suggests that dialling those three numbers is often just a bridge to A&E anyway, and the initial frustration goes unrecognised. Namely: “Why can’t I get an appointment with my doctor?” According to Dr Reggie Sangha, Medical

Director at Content Guru, these frustrations are caused by the way healthcare is comprised of different organisations that need to communicate with each other. “In today’s fragmented healthcare landscape, patients often find themselves lost in a maze of the system when seeking care,” said Sangha. “Ambulance services, community trusts, emergency departments, primary care facilities, and local government entities all represent a potential entry point to the wider healthcare system, leading to chaos and confusion. “Patients can feel distressed and frustrated, and healthcare professionals have to live with a disjointed data architecture that complicates, rather than aids, care.” Improving Productivity KPMG, the well-known analysis house, released a report last year detailing the digital transformation efforts within healthcare organisations. Of the responses from 200 healthcare leaders, one of the unifying motivations for digital transformation was the need to fast- track employee productivity. That may seem a chilling term for providing healthcare to those in need, but the reality is that the demand for doctors far outweighs the supply. As if that isn’t enough, Alex Ryan, Director of EMEA Healthcare Business Development at Hyland, reiterated the problem with technology within Healthcare. “Regrettably, medical practitioners often grapple with the technology intended to aid them,” said Ryan. “The healthcare sector frequently operates in isolated data silos, hindering the seamless sharing of information. “This lack of unified data access leads to inefficiencies among doctors. Patient care records may contain gaps or duplicates, potentially compromising the quality of care provided.” “There is an increasingly urgent need for a system-wide consensus that ensures there is no “wrong front door” to receiving medical care,” added Sangha. “Recognising these pain points across the system, many stakeholders

Dr Reggie Sangha Medical Director


In today’s fragmented healthcare landscape, patients often find themselves lost in a maze of the system when seeking care


have identified a solution: the Single Point of Access (SPOA).” Up in the Cloud This call for a single point of access isn’t an unreasonable request and, in many ways, resembles the one that businesses have made in recent years. While customers may choose different ways of interacting with a brand depending on personal preference, convenience, or the subject of the call, all these communication methods feed into one platform where an agent has all the information they need to provide a good service. According to Sangha, such a system would immensely improve the average interaction with healthcare providers. “The ambition for an SPOA is to streamline patient access to healthcare while capturing essential data for efficient care delivery, untangling the increasingly complex healthcare infrastructure that requires architectural intelligence. “Regardless of the entry point, patients are guided seamlessly through the system, reducing inequalities within individual patient journeys and standardising the patient experience. “The success of SOPA will rely on the existing architecture of Integrated Care Systems (ICSs). ICSs were established as a broad alliance of regional services almost two years ago, and since then, have helped to bring together disconnected resources and services as efficiently as possible, bridging the gap between health and social care.

Delivering SPOA through the framework of ICSs will ensure nationwide changes that can be delivered at scale.” Cloud technology is at the heart of this idea, which has already enabled colossal growth in the CX and CC environments. “In order to make the most of this new cloud-based technology which exists today, leaders need to commit to bold commissioning decisions that cover large region-wide complex healthcare systems,” said Sangha. “A cloud-based model, which has already proven successful in managing the scale and security of national emergency services, means incremental increases in platform capabilities can be upgraded without needing to update hardware or infrastructure.” “The emergence of cloud technology presents an opportunity for healthcare entities to break down these silos, enabling doctors to consult a centralised electronic patient record (EPR) as the definitive source of a patient’s medical status and history,” said Ryan. “By facilitating real-time data access and improving communication channels, the quality of patient care is elevated. “Moreover, there are significant advantages for doctors themselves. Streamlining administrative tasks through enhanced connectivity allow doctors to focus more on their patients and less on bureaucratic burdens.”

Alex Ryan Director of EMEA Healthcare Business Development


Achieving the Dream If more productive doctors weren’t enough of a pull towards cloud systems, Ryan pointed out that Healthcare






organisations will be able to take advantage of the regular benefits Cloud technologies provide, namely Scalability, Security, and Continuity. “Cloud setups can make adjustments to computing resources and storage space on the fly,” said Ryan. “This allows practices to accommodate unexpected spikes in patient numbers that might stem from natural disasters, human emergencies, or a pandemic. New features or functions can also simply be downloaded rather than necessitating new hardware, saving on time, money, and space. “On the security side, the siloed systems used by many practices aren’t particularly strong against intruders. As they’re not

connected to other systems effectively, they often use physical records to literally paper over the cracks of the tech stack. Cloud systems can offer security protocols like intrusion detection, security incident responses, vulnerability management, and adhering to regulations like GDPR. “Storing data in a data centre or server farm based far from the practice itself protects data, and not just from individual intruders, but also from potential data loss in the wake of accidents or disaster, like fire or floods. It also significantly reduces downtime, effectively outsourcing responsibility for an infrastructure that many practices wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford or maintain.”

Healthcare Technology Leaders Determined to Navigate Digital Transformation Challenges

In the face of global economic uncertainty and substantial industry hurdles, healthcare technology leaders remain resolute in steering their organisations through the tumultuous waters of digital transformation. Recent research conducted by KPMG illuminates the determination of these leaders to uphold their innovation priorities despite the odds. The KPMG 2021 Healthcare CEO Future Pulse survey, which incorporated insights from 200 healthcare leaders worldwide, unveils a landscape in which digital integration is both a buzzword and a strategic imperative. Astonishingly, 38 per cent of healthcare CEOs reported utilising artificial intelligence (AI) to engage with or treat patients, with notable proportions adopting remote monitoring (47 per cent), wearables (40 per cent), and embedded biometric monitoring (35 per cent). Such figures are poised to skyrocket in the coming years, mirroring the accelerating pace of technology adoption across the sector. Evan Rawstron, Global Co-Lead for KPMG Connected Enterprise for Health, emphasises the profound impact of technology on healthcare expenditure globally. “Healthcare organisations have long focused their investments on technology to improve consumer outcomes and experiences,”

Rawstron states. “However, the emphasis on employee and enterprise productivity is rapidly gaining importance.” Indeed, the KPMG global tech report 2023, reflecting insights from 2,100 executives across 16 countries and nine industries, underscores the alignment of healthcare priorities with workforce support and consumer trust- building initiatives. Within this realm, AI and machine learning (ML) emerge as linchpins for overcoming productivity hurdles while fortifying cyber resilience to bolster stakeholder trust and information security. Technology emerges as a beacon of hope in the battle against burnout and workforce shortages plaguing the healthcare domain. By streamlining processes and alleviating the burden on healthcare professionals, technology reallocates time towards higher- value tasks, enhancing employee productivity and value generation. However, the path to digital transformation has its challenges. Rawstron notes a pervasive trend of employee resistance influencing technology investment decisions within the healthcare sector. This resistance, exacerbated by demanding workloads and limited resources, underscores the urgent need for comprehensive training processes to effectively empower healthcare professionals to adapt to evolving technological landscapes.

Evan Rawstron Global Co-Lead KMPG Connected Enterprise for Health




Covering all Industries

Alan Jones, Marketing Manager at D-link, explains the advantages of M2M solutions.

In the landscape of Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things (IoT), and emerging smart cities and buildings, the demand for robust, reliable, and scalable machine-to- machine (M2M) communication solutions is increasingly critical. At the forefront of this technological shift, a range of 4G and 5G M2M solutions is making waves designed to empower industries, enhance smart city infrastructures, and streamline IoT deployments across various sectors. These M2M offerings include an extensive selection of industrial-grade 4G and 5G routers, supported by an optional cloud management platform for efficient deployment and monitoring. Leveraging the capabilities of 4G and 5G networks, these solutions enable secure, two-way, and redundant data transmission between control centres and remote devices. The cloud platform serves as an intuitive tool for administrators, facilitating the seamless management of all remote M2M routers. These M2M solutions find application across a broad spectrum of industries, including manufacturing, logistics, vehicle systems, security, robotics, billing, remote surveillance, utilities, telehealth, and traffic management. These solutions offer several key advantages, such as constant internet connectivity, reliable and stable connections, broadband access at a lower cost, and support for multi-SIM configurations. This ensures uninterrupted service, secure VPN connections, industrial-grade durability, remote management capabilities, GPS tracking, Wi-Fi connectivity, and WAN fault tolerance. These M2M routers are designed to meet the challenges posed by the digital transformation of industries and public administrations. They provide an effective response to the high-speed connectivity needs in scenarios where traditional internet connections are unavailable or insufficient. For instance, IoT and smart city applications, which typically require minimal bandwidth, can significantly benefit from the low-cost

deployment and maintenance facilitated by these routers.

Proving the Point Highlighted case studies illustrate the practical applications and benefits of these M2M solutions, including ensuring uninterrupted WAN connectivity with WAN backup and load balancing, automatic WAN-to-mobile failover for continuous service, and automatic mobile- to-mobile switching for fault tolerance. A notable example is the deployment of M2M VPN Routers in trains to maintain connectivity in tunnels and areas with low coverage, demonstrating the solutions’ suitability for challenging environments. The end-to-end solution offers cloud- based management of 4G and 5G cellular infrastructure, providing comprehensive control over multi-site devices. It eliminates technical constraints associated with cellular networks, offering benefits like automated zero-touch provisioning, unlimited scalability, and detailed supervision through dashboards and statistics. This cloud management platform underscores the ease of deployment, robust automation, and minimal downtime, making these M2M solutions a turnkey solution for businesses navigating the complexities of modern connectivity requirements. Meeting the Challenge In conclusion, the 4G and 5G M2M solutions represent a significant advancement in the field of industrial connectivity, offering scalable, secure, and efficient communication pathways for a myriad of applications. As industries continue to evolve towards more data-driven operations, the importance of reliable M2M communication cannot be overstated. This comprehensive suite of products and services ensures that businesses can meet the challenges of Industry 4.0, IoT, and smart city initiatives head-on, paving the way for a more connected and efficient future.

Alan Jones Marketing Manager


M2M routers are designed to meet the challenges

posed by digital transformation

D-Link 4G LTE M2M WiFi Router




The UK PSTN Switch-Off: Transitioning to Digital Telephony

The Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) in the UK is undergoing a significant transformation. Here are the key points you need to know:

What is the PSTN? l  The PSTN refers to the traditional analogue telephone network that has been in operation for decades. l  It includes the copper wires and infrastructure that enable landline phone services. Why the Change? l  The PSTN has reached the end of its serviceable life, and sourcing replacement parts for maintenance and repairs has become challenging. l  Telecoms companies are upgrading to new digital technology, such as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Digital Voice, or All- IP telephony. What Does the Change Mean? l  By the end of 2025, the PSTN will be retired, and all UK landlines will operate on digital networks. l  Consumers and businesses will experience clearer and better-quality phone calls with additional features. l  Telecoms providers will continue to be bound by existing regulatory obligations.

How to Prepare: l  For most consumers, the migration will be straightforward. l  If you already have an internet connection, you may simply need to plug your phone into your broadband router. l  Telecoms companies will contact customers ahead of the migration, so no immediate action is required.

Andy Cooper, Head of Nimans Connect

Selling VoIP Services: Overcoming Challenges

Selling VoIP services can be challenging due to competition and customer unfamiliarity. Here are some strategies to overcome common hurdles: Educate Your Customers: l  Many potential clients are unfamiliar with VoIP. Create content that explains the benefits of VoIP services and related technologies. l  Content marketing can help generate leads by providing valuable information online. Understand Your Target Audience: l  Identify your ideal customers. Are you targeting small businesses, enterprises, or specific industries? l  Tailor your messaging and solutions to address their unique needs.



Showcase VoIP Benefits: l  Highlight the advantages of VoIP, such as cost savings, flexibility, scalability, and improved call quality. l  Emphasize how VoIP can enhance communication and productivity for businesses. Offer Customised Solutions: l  Understand each client’s requirements and propose tailored VoIP solutions. l  Address specific pain points, such as integrating VoIP with existing systems or ensuring seamless transitions. Reach the Right Audience: l  Use targeted marketing channels to reach potential VoIP customers. l  Leverage digital marketing, social media, and industry-specific platforms. Emphasize Security and Reliability: l  Assure clients that VoIP services are secure and reliable. l  Highlight encryption, redundancy, and disaster recovery features. Competitive Pricing and Packages: l  Offer competitive pricing structures and flexible packages. l  Provide transparent pricing information to build trust with potential buyers.

Remember, the demand for VoIP services is growing, especially with the shift toward remote work. By addressing these challenges and implementing effective sales strategies, you can successfully sell VoIP phone systems and expand your market share.




Intelligent Security

How Artificial Intelligence is both a help and a hindrance to attempts to secure the business.

Fiona Whyte, Founder & Co-CEO, Endida: “When it comes to data breaches, it’s no longer simply about the theft or seizing of data by an attacker; a rapidly emerging threat is around “data tampering” also known “data poisoning”. “This is the covert injection of poisoned data or manipulation of existing data; this is particularly dangerous because companies increasingly rely on data to make informed decisions, and therefore, the integrity of that data is paramount, with tampered data often going undetected for long periods, it can cause serious impacts. A mere fraction of tampered data can have a disproportionate influence, particularly the data that feeds AI models. “One of the most alarming evolutions of attacks that we are seeing is around Malware. The sophistication of Malware is evolving at pace, especially with polymorphic and metamorphic types. These types of malware can alter their code to evade detection, and this is where AI and machine learning are critical to producing proactive responses to their types of attacks. “We are also seeing a constant rise in the number of CVEs (Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures) released each week. CVEs are publicly disclosed identifiers assigned to a specific cybersecurity vulnerability. Currently, the average number of new CVEs reported each week is around 28, and it’s expected to rise to over 500 each week by 2025. Security teams that don’t update their cybersecurity platforms with these new CVEs could find themselves constantly exposed.” Tim Freestone, Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer, Kiteworks: “Hackers are utilising advanced technologies like AI and machine learning to automate attacks and evade detection. The proliferation of connected devices, cloud services, and remote work has significantly expanded the potential entry points for these threats. “Compounding the issue is a shortage of

skilled cybersecurity professionals, making it challenging for organisations to keep up with the ever-evolving threat landscape. Additionally, many employees still lack sufficient cybersecurity awareness, leaving room for human error.” GetApp UK Content Analyst David Jani: “Our findings show there are some areas of concern regarding the threats of phishing and inadequate password management practices affecting remote and hybrid employees. “These factors, however, affect all businesses no matter their workplace set-up, and whilst hybrid companies may not have the same direct oversight over business devices, primarily in-person companies shouldn’t be complacent either.” Stephan Robineau, Executive Vice President, Network Business Division, Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise: “Enterprises today face a number of challenges in protecting their corporate data against the threat of cybersecurity attacks. Firstly, since COVID-19, working patterns continue to evolve. Employees continue to work across offices and remote locations, demanding connectivity to platforms and applications on the corporate network from anywhere and at any time with watertight security. “Secondly, it only takes one unsecured device or application on the corporate network to compromise data secured on that network – and the increase in the number of devices, including a surge in IoT devices, on the corporate network is putting organisations at risk. “The use of new devices and applications brought on by ‘shadow IT’ is almost inevitable in an organisation as employees adapt to digital transformation programs, many of which promote the use of IT by non-IT staff. Easy-to-use and set up technology that offers business benefit to individual departments is brought on board often without thinking of letting IT know.”

Fiona Whyte Founder & Co-CEO


Tim Freestone Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer



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