Three overlapping trends are shaping what should be a fascinating few years in corporate communications:
- The number of electronic tools and the ability to link them together in unified communications platforms is growing.
- The public is increasingly familiar with – and beginning to demand – sophisticated communications capabilities. These include wikis, video streaming, blogs and various other forms of interactivity. Many of these no longer even seem exotic.
- The generation entering the workforce has been raised with these tools and capabilities.
The bottom line, then, is that organizations need to have a strategy for integrating sophisticated communications tools within their unified communications portfolio. In some cases, this platform will be used internally. It also can feed collaboration with vendors, suppliers and other connected firms. Of course, it also is a key way to reach the public.
I had the opportunity to discuss the nexus of emerging applications and how they will fit into unified communications platforms with Roberta Mackintosh, the director for Unified Communications and Collaboration for Verizon Business. Mackintosh -- who worked on a new study, Dangerous Liaisons: How Businesses are Learning to Work with their New Stakeholders, told me that there are process, security and policy issues that organizations must work through in order to efficiently and safely use these new tools.