Nice Systems

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Rich Tehrani
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Nice Systems

Brian Spraetz, Senior Product Marketing Manager NICE Systems Inc., recently sat down with me (virtually over e-mail :) )to discuss IP communications and NICE’s upcoming presentation at ITEXPO.
 
NICE Systems is the leading provider of Insight from Interactions, offering comprehensive performance management and interaction analytics solutions for the enterprise and public safety and security markets. Read more about the company here.
 
RT: Please outline your new corporate initiatives.
BS: We recently introduced the NICE SmartCenter solution to the market. This innovative offering is geared towards achieving and maintaining high levels of performance across the enterprise, especially in the contact center. A central SmartCenter technology is its interaction analytics capabilities that allow businesses to extract valuable business insights from unstructured recorded interactions such as conversations and screen activity. These insights help an organization to improve decision-making and strategic planning efforts.
 
RT: How is IP communications changing your company’s strategy?
BS: The rise in popularity of IP as a communications medium has opened new possibilities for capturing interactions across the enterprise. With previous telephony technologies, extending capture resources to small offices and branches was not feasible due to cost and support concerns. IP telephony allows for the centralization of capture resources, which lowers support costs, while making it cost-effective to extend the reach of capture capabilities to remote and branch offices.
 
RT: How has SIP changed communications?
BS: We utilize SIP-based communications within our own solution for command and control purposes. However, its usefulness as an industry standard has been limited by the various ‘flavors’ of SIP that exist across different vendors. If SIP can become a true standard for IP communications it offers a great deal of promise in simplifying much of the complexity involved in integration efforts between solutions and infrastructure.
 
RT: What is the biggest request coming from your customer base?
BS: Our customers are requesting that our IP interaction capture solutions have the same levels of functionality and robustness that is found in our traditional TDM products. They are also asking for a seamless transition from traditional to IP interaction capture methods, and want a solution that works across the wide range of IP telephony vendors and environments.
 
RT: How are you answering their demands?
BS: Our IP products have the same, and in some cases even greater, scalability, reliability and redundancy than our traditional TDM line. Plus, the two types can be intermixed within the same deployment easing migration planning and rollout. We support all major IP telephony vendor environments and also offer our own network-ready IP capture device capable of bring ‘active IP’ capture to environments that do not support that mode.
 
RT: What do you think the future of the market is?
BS: The IP telephony market will continue to grow as companies expand and replace aging TDM-based infrastructures. The ability to extend traditional telephony functionality into remote offices and branches also serves as a big driver for continued market expansion.
 
RT: How does the U.S. growth rate compare to the rest of the world?
BS: We have seen the U.S. market increase dramatically over the last couple of years. Prior to that, most major IP telephony deployments were occurring outside of the U.S.
 
RT: What do you think of Google and Apple entering the telecom market?
How about Microsoft?
BS: I think that anything that brings IP telephony ‘mainstream’ is good.
 
RT: What sorts of things will we be hearing about during your presentation at ITEXPO?
BS: I am on a panel that is discussing the benefits and challenges surrounding call recording in an IP environment. I expect the issues I raised earlier, migration, cross-vendor support and reliability will likely be raised and addressed by the panel.
 
RT: Why is your presentation a “Can’t Miss?”
BS: Having a plan to move interaction capture capabilities from traditional TDM to VoIP environments is no longer an option. If your organization is in the process of converting or actively planning a conversion it is very important to understand the issues and options available in the market, and to learn from the successes and struggles of companies that have been there already.
 
RT: What do you want the industry to know about your company?
BS: NICE has long been a believer in the benefits and advantages offered by IP telephony. In fact, we hold multiple patents on VoIP recording methods that were filed many years before the technology took off.
 
RT: Please make one surprising prediction we will see in 5 years.
BS: The traditional TDM switch vendors will no longer exist. They will have been acquired by new players in the market or have shrunken to irrelevance.


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