The Untapped Potential of #HostedTelephony

According to analyst and consulting company AMI Partners, cloud services are approaching critical mass amongst SMEs. Of course, there are many services that can be delivered from the cloud and AMI tracks a number of these. What’s interesting is that the same research that shows rapid growth in the adoption of software as a service and remotely managed IT services, also highlights adoption of hosted telephony.

Hosted telephony seems to be dragging behind other services that can be delivered from the cloud. There may be a number of reasons for this – hosted telephony is a real-time service and perhaps some users have less confidence in outsourcing such services to the cloud. However, there is a clear growth trend with penetration forecast to rise to around 5% by 2015.

The really interesting thing is the vast untapped potential of the market. If AMI’s predictions are accurate, 95% of SMEs will have yet to adopt hosted telephony solutions in the next four years. That represents huge growth potential.

Clearly, service providers need to ensure that they focus on this and develop propositions that will enable them to reach out to this market. It’s likely that current messaging either doesn’t address SME concerns or simply doesn’t reach potential adopters of hosted telephony services.

We know from our experience that hosted telephony services can be offered reliably to any potential customer and that users can enjoy a seamless service experience. In order to reach the full potential of the market, service providers should consider how to reach the 95%. Clear messages, targeted marketing and sales efforts need to be directed to reach potential customers.

Hosted telephony – mobile PBX, IP Centrex, virtual PaBX, or whichever flavour you choose – has enormous potential. Service providers need to act fast to address this and to make sure they don’t lose out. After all, only service providers can put in place the service guarantees to ensure the success of real-time solutions such as voice. There’s a huge market out there. Make sure you capture it.

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