http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 14.01Change: 0.00
R/$ = 10.67Change: -0.04
Au 1287.51 $/ozChange: 0.01
Pt 1424.50 $/ozChange: -1.50
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Sep 21, 2011

Company Announcement: Communications consolidation - The strategic fundamentals

Back
Africa|Facebook|Housing|IPads|IPhones|Kindles|PROJECT|Social Media|System|Systems|Twitter|Africa|South Africa|Communication Technologies|Communications Context|Connectivity Tool|Enterprise Wide Communications Architecture|Systems|Infrastructure|Cellular Telephone|Communication Technologies|Mobile Phones|Smartphones
Africa|Housing|PROJECT|System|Systems||Africa||Systems|Infrastructure|
africa-company|facebook|housing|ipads|iphones|kindles|project|social-media-company|system|systems-company|twitter|africa|south-africa|communication-technologies|communications-context|connectivity-tool|enterprise-wide-communications-architecture|systems|infrastructure|cellular-telephone|communication-technologies-technology|mobile-phones|smartphones

Corporate life has long featured a gulf between the interests, motivations, budgets and actions of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) department and, well, everyone else. This was true as long as communication technologies were largely hidden aspects of how humans interact. The notorious “Big Room” housing the company contact centre was an obvious manifestation of how separate ICT was from the rest of the company, on strategic and practical levels.

In the last decade, however, social media has turned communication on its head. The results of the social media shift are visible in the corporate boardroom, where profoundly changing consumer behaviour is forcing CIOs, COOs, CEOs and CFOs into collective responsibility for a company's strategic development and operational successes. Today, the bottom line is pretty simple: business success requires an ICT department that is fully integrated into the wider business strategy.

Much of this change in strategic orientation is a reflection of the extraordinary flattening out of communications that is occurring across the world. But in South Africa, this revolution is wrapped up in the equally powerful mobile access revolution. The mobile phone is taking its place as our primary connectivity tool thanks to its ability to by-pass many of the frustrating infrastructure hindrances that continue to challenge the common man. Add spiralling mobile use to the general Social Media boom and you have a communication relationship between brand and consumer that is so fluid it's almost impossible to pin down.

This pattern has created an extremely challenging communication context for companies, where increasingly demanding consumers are expecting uniform levels of service and information across multiple channels (fax, email, Facebook, Twitter etc.) and devices (computers, smartphones, mobile phones, iPads, Kindles and iPhones). Brands simply have to cater to all these channels and devices, and most consumers couldn't care less what technical challenges have to be dealt with to deliver the service. If the communication isn't happening on their terms, they are increasingly likely to jump to a better equipped rival.

Thus companies are being forced to establish a consolidated, enterprise wide communications architecture able to cope with any communications context and unfettered by operational ring-fencing. There are many strategic and operational benefits to be gained from such consolidation; apart from the crucial ability to talk to consumers on their terms, a consolidated system offers the kind of high level strategic lens that allows decision makers to truly understand and assess what's going on in each division or business unit. Also, if executed correctly, it has the ability to dramatically reduce the overall cost of doing business.

With so many variables at play, it’s one thing to decide on a consolidated communications architecture and quite another to actually put it into practice. In South Africa, some companies are baulking at the challenge and appear to be hoping the new communications context will simply disappear and stop bothering them, while others are literally throwing the kitchen sink at making sure their systems are not only able to cope with today's demands, but are also able to seamlessly scale (up and down) according to future needs.

For those embracing the challenge, the first crucial step is to understand the full scope of the market driver's influencing the decision. Does the brand need to deliver better service across the board, or in a specific area? Are customers pushing for key changes in communications options? What are those changes? Has reporting become a cost-intensive internal nightmare? Every business case is different, and it is essential that decision makers fully understanding the fine details of their specific market context before making any bold consolidation moves. As always, it is essential that tactics are informed by a strong strategy if they are going to deliver the expected results.

Once the strategic backdrop has been put in place, the next step is to find a strong partner to work with - that means a proven company with a track record in migrating clients from silo-orientated communications architecture to a consolidated one. The quality of such a partnership is especially important because of the intense, long term nature of the exercise. Implementing a consolidated communication system is at the very least a one year project, and is likely to end up in the 12 – 24 month range in most cases. It's a mission-critical transition that can and does deliver massive savings and sharpened market performance - but never if approached half heartedly. A partner that understands the terrain and has proven credentials will take considerable responsibility for successful execution onto its shoulders, and will also bring vital insights into elements of the process, such as internal communication.

Given the high stakes and challenges involved, it's easy to see why some companies are simply avoiding the consolidation imperative. But when one considers the rate of change currently prevalent in how, why, where and when the world is communicating, Executives must heed the consolidation call in order to address this challenge.

 

Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter
Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other Announcements News
The launch of the newly formed SA Women in Energy Network is set to take place on Tuesday, 26 August 2014 at the Forum Homini Hotel and Roots Restaurant, Letamo Game Estate in Mogale City, Gauteng. South Africa is set to celebrate the unique and defining roles that...
The much anticipated launch of the South African Women in Energy Network held in August 2014 offered the prominent women in attendance another exciting surprise, with the announcement of the first annual SA Women in Energy Award. According to Marlene van Rooyen,...
Acting on the need for women’s unique role within the energy sector in South Africa, Marlene van Rooyen, longstanding Editor of Walls & Roofs in AFRICA, founding Editor of 25Degrees and WATER360, formed the newly launched SA Women in Energy Network. This much...
More
 
 
Latest News
The pump prices of both grades of petrol and wholesale diesel, as well as the maximum retail prices of illuminating paraffin and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), are set to decrease from September 3, the Department of Energy said on Friday. Petrol would drop by 67c/l,...
The amount owed to municipalities for services has continued to rise, reaching R94-billion by June, compared with the R93.3-billion recorded in December. Households still accounted for the bulk of the aggregate municipal consumer debts; however, this had declined...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
South African State-owned defence industrial group Denel has announced its fourth consecutive year of profits. The group's results for the financial year 2013/2014 were recently announced at its head office in Centurion, south of Pretoria. Revenues grew by 17%, net...
There is little opportunity for JSE-listed infrastructure company Group Five to grow shareholder value in the domestic market, says CEO Mike Upton. He says value can still be found in the private sector, in the renewable and industrial power sector, as well as in...
The National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) has announced the event dates of the 2015 Johannesburg International Motor Show (JIMS). The event will take place from October 14 to October 25, 2015, at the Johannesburg Expo Centre, Nasrec.
UK engineering support services provider Babcock is set to deliver the largest order of global truck manufacturer DAF’s truck tractors in Southern Africa to bulk carrier road-based logistics company Ngululu Bulk Carriers (NBC), with 133 trucks to be delivered in...
Digital radio communications in the African local government space can open up the world, but have many challenges to overcome, notes integration and migration of legacy radio communications infrastructure with digital mobile radio company Emcom Wireless head of...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks