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Bruce Anderson, president and CEO of Altivon, a Phoenix-based solution provider and Interactive Intelligence Platinum Elite Partner, agreed that customers are often hesitant when it comes to CaaS solutions. About 80 percent of Altivon's Interactive Intelligence sales are still on-premise, he said.
But Interactive Intelligence’s local control model offers a level of assurance to customers concerned about CaaS security and reliability, Anderson noted.
"It provides much greater peace of mind as the customer’s circuitry remains 'locally' connected and is a paradigm that they're comfortable with," Anderson said.
Altivon has been a partner since 1997, Anderson said, and focuses exclusively on Interactive Intelligence solutions for sales in its segments. His Interactive Intelligence business has doubled each of the last two years.
Anderson said he sees Quick Spin as a good way to get customers engaged with CaaS and plans to offer it to prospects immediately. Other Interactive Intelligence partners concurred.
"It's very compelling," said Brian Holdampf, president of Adapt Telephony Services, an Oak Brook, Ill.-based solution provider and Interactive Intelligence Platinum Elite Partner. "I like the interface for it and that it gives people an idea of how simple it is. I mean, you could basically show it to them during a sales call, walk somebody through it, get it running right away with just a Web client."
Adapt's Interactive Intellligence sales this year will wind up about 15 percent above the last fiscal year, Holdampf said, and have grown at least 10 percent year over year in each of the 14 years it has partnered with Interactive Intelligence.
Adapt focuses on banking and financial services customers for which CaaS security concerns are often a hurdle, he said. Customers can also get tripped up when they're walked through too many different contact center or UC features that make management seem tricky.
Quick Spin can solve that, too, Holdampf suggested.
"One thing that can happen during our presentations --if we're not tailoring our demo to see just the things a prospect is looking for -- is the 'it's too much for me' answer," he said. "But this is so simple. Anyone could set it up without much training."
Solution providers and analysts agree that the free trial of Interactive Intelligence CaaS isn't unto itself a moneymaker. But customer interest is strong enough so that it may be the nudge customers need to get them to buy the system, they said.
"The buzz Interactive Intelligence gets among customers is strong," said Jon Arnold, principal of J. Arnold & Associates, an independent analyst firm focused on IP communications. "If they're now offering a free trial, on one level, that makes the channel's job easier."
Programs like Interactive Intelligence's are a sign that cloud-based platforms for contact center have moved out of the early adopter phase, Arnold said.
It also can mean greenfield opportunity for solution providers in that customers who couldn't otherwise afford premise-based contact center solutions might be more receptive, Arnold said.
"If this is the future, it's better to be on the right side of it now vs. scrambling down the road when people have more mature ecosystems in place," Arnold said. "It's not really a question of future-proofing, but if you're thinking a little more strategically about your business, this is a pretty good way to kick-start it."