The Expanded Avaya-RingCentral Partnership: A Closer Look

After selling "some 500,000 seats" together, Avaya and RingCentral have doubled down on their partnership

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The Expanded Avaya-RingCentral Partnership: A Closer Look
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Published: May 29, 2024

Charlie Mitchell

Avaya and RingCentral first partnered five years ago, and a lot has changed since.

From financial wobbles at the former to leadership shifts at both, the vendors have endured a topsy-turvy start to the decade.

However, the relationship between them has stayed strong and continues to evolve.

Indeed, it started with Avaya acting as an agent, paving the way for customers to switch to RingCentral.

That original agreement saw them move hundreds of thousands of seats.

The success led to an expansion, with the vendors combining the migration with Avaya Cloud Office (ACO) and its endpoints.

Now, Avaya and RingCentral have sold “some 500,000” seats together, according to Alan Masarek, CEO of Avaya.

Yet both enterprise communications stalwarts sensed the opportunity to further the relationship, and that’s precisely what happened at this month’s Avaya Engage event.

A Hybrid Avaya-RingCentral Offering

Perhaps most notably, Avaya and RingCentral launched a hybrid solution that integrates RingCentral Meetings, available under the ACO brand, with Aura, Avaya’s on-premise PBX.

Previously, customers had to choose between ACO or leveraging Aura with a phone system.

Yet, with RingCentral now integrating with Aura, users can keep their on-premise telephony as they utilize RingCentral’s collaboration tools. As Masarek told ZKast:

It’s all about innovation without disruption. Letting customers maintain their existing infrastructure while adopting new technologies.

As such, one part of the business may now use the full ACO suite while another continues to use their on-premise systems, with additional digital capabilities from RingCentral.

That will allow big businesses to slowly migrate different locations to ACO, enabling a more cautious, phased cloud migration.

Acknowledging this, Vlad Shmunis, Founder & CEO of RingCentral, summarized: “It’s about meeting customers where they are and offering them a path to the cloud at their own pace.”

RingSense AI In the Avaya Cloud Office

Avaya customers leveraging ACO or Avaya Aura can now leverage RingSense, RingCentral’s conversational intelligence platform.

In doing so, they can enable voice transcriptions, meeting summaries/insights, and video highlights – among many other things.

“RingSense AI brings conversation intelligence to all communication modalities—messaging, video, and phone,” added Shmunis.

It includes features like transcription, sentiment analysis, and action items, helping users focus on interactions without taking notes.

“This integration with Avaya’s offerings ensures customers benefit from advanced AI capabilities,” concluded the CEO.

Most interestingly, however, RingCentral is bringing these capabilities to customers in on-premise and hybrid environments as well as to Avaya’s cloud customers.

Again, this links back to Avaya’s “innovation without disruption” manta.

“The key is supporting customers’ journeys, whether they choose on-premise, private cloud, public cloud, or a hybrid approach,” concluded Masarek. “Our goal is to accommodate their needs without forcing a rip-and-replace scenario.”

New Avaya Cloud Office Integrations

While the announcements above captured the headlines, the new ACO integrations with Microsoft Teams and the Avaya Experience Platform Public Cloud will also benefit customers.

With the former, brands use Microsoft’s collaborations suite while leveraging ACO for advanced, reliable telephony.

In addition, they will receive new functionalities beyond what is available in Teams. These include SMS, fax, and business analytics.

Also, the ACO-Teams integration will remove the need for a Teams phone license, which may result in significant cost savings.

Next is the ACO integration with the Avaya Experience Platform Public Cloud: Avaya’s newly-named CCaaS offering.

That integration enables a unified CCaaS and UCaaS platform so the contact center stays connected with the broader organization.

Moreover, agents may access directories within the ACO, view the availability of subject matter experts (SMEs), and communicate with them to help solve complex customer issues.

Elsewhere at Avaya & RingCentral

The strengthened partnership proved one of several significant announcements made during this month’s Avaya Engage event.

There, Avaya also announced a tie-up with Zoom, which will see the Zoom Meetings client serve as a bridge to the Avaya Communication Manager.

As such, users may leverage a dialer within Zoom to make calls that route through the Avaya system, allowing them to use their existing phone setup while leveraging all of Zoom’s features.

Meanwhile, Avaya launched other high-profile partnerships with LivePerson and Afiniti to deliver a “unified omnichannel suite” and introduce AI models to the Avaya Experience Platforms, respectively.

Finally, Avaya announced several enhancements to its contact center offerings and shared more on its Edify acquisition, which promises to put journey orchestration capabilities into customers’ hands.

In regards to RingCentral, it recently rebranded its MVP platform as RingEX and gained momentum of its own in the CCaaS space, courtesy of its recently released RingCX platform.

 

 

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Brands mentioned in this article.

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