Michigan State Wins Innovation Award from Avaya; 7 Partners Win DevConnect Excellence Awards

Does the phrase “I’ll know it when I see it” apply to innovation? How do you recognize innovation versus improvement when you see something new?

I hold that Innovation refers to the notion of doing something not just better, but markedly different from previous attempts to solve the same challenge.

This year’s Avaya DevConnect Partner Excellence Award recipients did just that; they developed new applications and capabilities that were different and innovative, and in so doing, created new opportunities for Avaya customers.

I’m confident that as you read about these innovators, you too, will “know it when you see it.”

Partner of the Year

ObjectTel was recognized for their CLASSONE Endpoint Manager and iCAS solutions, which offer unique mobility options for unified communications. A DevConnect Select Product Program (SPP) partner, ObjectTel enables conferencing of land mobile radios with a variety of Avaya communication platforms.

New Partner Award

Ember Services Limited is a financially-focused management analytics and consultancy firm. Also a participating vendor in the DevConnect SPP, Ember uses Speech Analytics to help customers identify opportunities for cost reduction, revenue improvement and improved customer value.

DevConnect Innovation Awards

The following DevConnect Technology Partners were recognized with Innovation Awards:

  • Eutech: Specializing in smart workplace and intelligent building operations systems, Eutech is recognized for their efforts in integrating their iViva solution with the Avaya Aura Collaboration Environment. This first-of-its-kind solution targets reduction of operational costs, and provides the ability to track and deliver services to employees and customers based on their availability and physical location.
  • Jacada: Recognized for their customer self-service and agent desktop solutions that simplify the way customers interact with contact centers and help reduce the cost of operations. Available through the DevConnect SPP, Jacada solutions can be easily deployed and implemented with multiple Avaya contact center platforms into both enterprise and mid-market businesses.
  • LiveSentinel: Recognized for their MiAlert family of UC products that embed communication technology into medical alert devices, leveraging the advanced features of Avaya Aura and Avaya IP Office. They offer end-to-end emergency notification options, providing the elderly with improved security and a better quality of life.
  • Plantronics: Recognized for their work extending location- and presence-aware communications to their compliance-tested headsets for Avaya deskphones and soft-clients, Plantronics demonstrates seamless handover of audio- and video-based collaboration sessions between mobile and desktop environments. These efforts are being evaluated by Avaya R&D for inclusion in future Avaya Aura Collaboration Environment releases.
  • Webtext: Award recipient for a second year, Webtext builds applications across the entire Avaya Contact Center suite, including Avaya Collaboration Environment. Innovative Webtext applications open up SMS text messaging as a channel to previously voice-only customers by allowing contact centers to text-enable their primary numbers.

To learn more about these and other DevConnect Technology Partner and Select Product solutions, visit the DevConnect Marketplace at www.devconnectmarketplace.com.

Introducing Special Customer Innovation Awards

Many Avaya customers are also realizing tangible business benefits by developing applications in-house for Avaya platforms, leveraging the many SDKs and resources of the Avaya DevConnect Program.

In recognition of these internal, customer-driven development initiatives, we’ve expanded the DevConnect award program this year to include and recognize our customers. As such, I’m pleased to announce Michigan State University as recipient of our first Customer Innovation Award.

MSU developed an elevator emergency notification application using the Call Intercept function of Avaya Aura® Collaboration Environment. The application identifies the elevator location and floor, routing the passenger’s call through MSU’s contact center and simultaneously notifying the school’s on-call maintenance staff. The application reduced overall callout time and eliminated the need for a third-party service contract.

Congratulations to all our 2014 Award winners!

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Avaya Refreshes Channel Partner Program with New Incentives

This past week, Avaya announced a series of changes to its channel partner program designed to incentivize activities around five quickly-growing market opportunities—midmarket, the contact center, next-generation networking, modernizing the customer base and the cloud.

“Avaya Channel Partners start from a position of strength, equipped with a portfolio of unified communications, customer experience and networking solutions that are unmatched in the industry,” said Global Channel Chief Steve Biondi. “We are making that position even stronger with new program elements that will bolster their capabilities and reach as we streamline how we work together. We want and need our channel partners to be successful and our customers to be happy – we can only do that as a united front that respects the individual concerns of each party.”

Avaya will consolidate a number of existing partner incentives, while introducing new incentives for partners who carry Avaya’s full product portfolio and deliver industry-leading customer service.

Avaya will introduce two rebate categories based on partner size and scope: Large, high-volume partners will be eligible for the Portfolio Growth rebate, and fast-growing partners who specialize in either networking or midmarket will be eligible for the Specialized Growth rebate. Neither rebate is capped, so the partner’s earning potential is only limited by their spend with Avaya.

Under the Portfolio Growth plan, large partners who meet specific revenue targets can earn a 3 percent rebate if they exceed a specific year-over-year growth target. Additionally, large partners who meet this threshold will receive favorable co-delivery pricing.

Under the Specialized Growth plan, smaller partners who specialize in networking or the midmarket and meet specific revenue targets can earn a 3 percent rebate if they exceed a year-over-year growth target.

The company ended its Grow Right program in late 2015, and will shift funding to these performance-based rebates in 2016. Additionally, Avaya will consolidate four separate theater programs for demo purchases into a single, standardized demo purchase program using the Avaya One Source quote process for instant discounts.

“We are in a time of intense transformation for channel companies and their customers,” said Paul Edwards, Director of Infrastructure Channels and Ecosystems at IDC. “To stay one step ahead of market demands, vendors need to continually assess and evolve their channel programs in ways that support, encourage and empower their entrepreneurial spirit.”

In other partner news, Worldwide Partner Organization Vice President Joe Lohmeier has been recognized as a 2016 CRN Channel Chief. Lohmeier helps manage the company’s relationship with its more than 9,000 partners worldwide. The executives on this annual list represent top leaders in the IT channel who excel at driving growth and revenue in their organizations through channel partners.

Avaya Wins Prestigious NorthFace ScoreBoard Award

Once again, we are excited to report news that Avaya and its employees have been recognized for creation of the industry’s best customer engagement experience.

Today we announced Avaya has received the NorthFace ScoreBoard AwardSM from Omega Management Group Corp for achieving excellent client satisfaction scores. It’s our second year in a row we’ve won this award, which is presented annually to companies that–as rated solely by their own customers–exceeded expectations in customer satisfaction during the prior calendar year.

All credit for winning the prestigious NorthFace ScoreBoard Award goes to the Avayans who continue to lead our transformation that began a few years back. In 2015, we continued to see a terrific response from our omnichannel contact center initiatives, which deliver 90 percent restoration of outages in two hours or less, including:

  • After four consecutive years of improvement in client satisfaction, we achieved an all-time-high average satisfaction score between “Very Good” and “Excellent” in 2015
  • A solid 93 percent of Avaya clients indicated that their overall support experience was either “Excellent,” “Very Good,” or “Good”
  • More than 3,000 customers took the time to nominate our employees for awards based on the outstanding support they received

While much has been accomplished, there remains more work ahead us. Through it all, our mission and philosophy remain simple:

  • Prevent problems before they happen
  • Fix problems quickly if they do happen
  • Provide guidance on how to fine-tune solutions so your investment in Avaya is protected and delivers on your business outcomes
  • Maximize the success of our customers

The ongoing transformation would not be possible without our current customers who continue to want world-class service that maximizes the value of their solution investment.

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Avaya Achieves TSIA Operational Best Practice Certification

On Monday, Avaya was proud to announce that it had achieved the Technology Services Industry Association (TSIA) Rated Outstanding, Assisted Support North America certification for delivering excellence across all significant modes of technical support.

The TSIA’s Operational Best Practices program is a rigorous certification process that inspects the capabilities of an organization across all relevant aspects of their operation on behalf of their customers. Avaya met more than 165 best practices criteria developed by TSIA, received validation by 50 leading technology companies, and passed a rigorous onsite audit conducted by seasoned service executives. This detailed on-site audit ensures that Avaya delivers outstanding customer support at the channel, center, region, and global level.

Winning the award is “a reflection of the hard work and dedication of Avaya’s support organization,” said Mike Runda, Avaya Senior Vice President. “We are pleased that customers can purchase Avaya products with confidence knowing that the highest industry support standards are met and are backed by outstanding quality after-sales with telephone, online case, and email operations support.”

We are proud of the certification, and how it recognizes the quality of service Avaya delivers.

This certification represents the latest in a long line of recognition that Avaya’s services organization has received in the last year:

Current and prospective customers should feel confident that Avaya continues to invest in delivering world-class service that helps them maximize the value of the solution investment.

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