Communications Enabled Business Process

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Communications Enabled Business Process

You may have heard the term Communications Enabled Business Process or CEBP. I always wonder where new acronyms come from so I did some digging. This particular term was developed by engineers who were bored by the current state of telecom terms. After all, there are only about 100,000 of them and it has been proven a single person can learn them all in a lifetime.
 
This of course was the impetus to develop CEBP as research showed most people will not even be able to remember what Communications Enabled Business Process stands for, let alone means. ;)
 
Of course I kid and this is because I can’t believe we have yet another acronym to discuss, deliberate, explain, have conference sessions and webinars about, etc. But while the beginning of this article starts in a lighthearted way, please do not underestimate the importance and serious nature of CEBP to your business.
 
I started thinking about this term on a call with M5 Networks CEO Dan Hoffman and CMO Elizabeth Vanneste. Dan is a low key and infinitely knowledgeable person who has been on many panels I have moderated at TMC’s Internet Telephony Conference & Expos. Over the years, Hoffman and I have spoken about where communications on-demand and especially his company’s service is headed… I have always been impressed with the new features M5 has added to its hosted communications solution.
 
Most recently the company has rolled out a new initiative called the M5 Sales Engine which is designed to track the effectiveness of your sales team and manage production-volume calling. What does this solution do for your company? Well, think of it as a detailed performance monitoring solution which is provided on-demand, allowing you to optimize how your salesforce operates. The customer has access to detailed charts and graphs which are provided by the reporting software (I mean solution). I have included some of these graphs here for your perusal.
 
But while this is exciting, there are two additional areas you should know about. Hoffman tells me when his company works with new customers, the first thing they do is analyze the customer’s business. They determine what their business is and how it works. In addition they get into what Hoffman describes as the nitty gritty, referring to details such as having a live agent or auto-attendant answering phones as they ring. In addition, they determine how many road warriors and home agents, the company has and moreover how companies utilize these assets.
 
According to Hoffman, the customization of the communications features is the cherry on top of the sundae they construct for every client. While this sounds delicious enough it is also surprising as most communications providers do not do anything like this. So although M5 doesn’t explicitly call their solutions CEBP, this is in fact what they do.
 
In my opinion purchasing a hosted M5 Networks solution is a fantastic way to enjoy the benefits of communications enabled business process without the cost of equipment.
 
There is one other point I wanted to make and it has to do with the company’s marketing. M5 was very quiet for a number of years as they grew their footprint. Lately however their marketing materials have become much more professional and I see them emulating many of the successful marketing ideas pioneered by Salesforce.com. As an example, take a look at how Salesforce.com has a logo that represents saying no to Software while M5 does this for the term Phone System. Not that Salesforce.com was the first to utilize such a sign. I am not sure where I saw this sign originally but it had to do with either cigarettes or ghosts. :)
 
Why do I point out marketng? Simply because a company that markets and moreover knows how to market and position themselves is more likely to be around for the long haul. Certainly the recent strength in Cbeyond and 8x8 shows the hosted communications market is strong. Covad seems to have given up on this space which is very positive for others in the market who seem to be doing very well.
 
As an example, Cbeyond added over $100 million in market capitalization in the past 12 months as they are a pure-play business communications provider. 8x8, the provider of Packet8 service has been flat these past 12 months but the good news is they have recently become profitable. I believe they would go higher if they didn’t have the Vonage ball and chain around their necks – meaning a discount because they have anything to do with the New Jersey based consumer VoIP leader.
 
But getting back to CEBP, if this concept sounds like it will help your business and you think taking over 1,000 telecom features and matching the best of these features to areas of your business that will improve the way you operate, you might want to give M5 Networks a call.


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