Avaya enhances two midmarket hybrid cloud solutions, and broadens availability

Both Powered by Avaya IP Office and OnAvaya – Google Cloud Platform have already been available to customers through the channel. Now however, their availability has been opened up to more partners, and both solutions have also been enhanced from their initial versions.

Mike Kuch Avaya 300

Mike Kuch, Senior Director Segment Leadership Group for Cloud at Avaya

Avaya has announced Powered by Avaya IP Office and OnAvaya – Google Cloud Platform, two different hybrid cloud options designed for midmarket customers, as well as for different skillsets in the partner community. The move gives clarity to Avaya’s midmarket cloud strategy on the heels of their strategic direction announced last week at the Avaya Executive Partner  Forum.

“While these are two different offers, one shared value proposition is that they both share the exact same code base as the on-prem IP Office,” said Mike Kuch, Senior Director Segment Leadership Group for Cloud at Avaya. “That’s a big benefit, especially for partners, because it means there is nothing additional for them to learn.”

Powered by Avaya IP Office is a platform, which was previously available in very limited release to first 10, and then 12 partners, many of whom are distribution partners. The partners bought the platform and hosted the service. It was also solely a UC product in this stage, without any contact centre (CC) capacity.

OnAvaya – Google Cloud Platform, as might be guessed from the name, is a service, that was provided by Avaya and hosted in the Google Cloud. Its functionality has also been significantly expanded.

“Before it was a CC product only,” Kuch said. “Now it’s CC and UC. Before the agent interface was limited to Chromebooks, and now it can run on all major OS and browsers as well. Before it was a voice- only agent, and now its omni-channel.”

Kuch also stressed that a major benefit for both now stems from the hybrid options.

“It allows you to run code both from on-prem and from cloud, and do things like run the corporate office on prem, and remote locations from the cloud,” he said.

Kuch also said the hybrid capability would help Avaya with a major goal, particularly in the Canadian market, of encouraging customers with old Nortel systems that still work fine to upgrade to modern technology that gives them access to features like social media that aren’t on the old CS 1000s.

“We see the hybrid as a way for the old Nortel customers to make that transition,” he said. “If you have an existing system, and it’s working and you don’t want to get rid of it, you can add new features in the hybrid mode. The hybrid lowers the risk.”

Moving more partners into the cloud is an Avaya strategic imperative, and these two hybrid options provide paths for partners who are there already, as well as the over half of Avaya’s partners who don’t yet have a cloud strategy.

“We want to make it easy for all partners to get into the cloud,” Kuch said. “Powered by Avaya IP Office is for partners who are already there. For those that aren’t there yet, but know they need to get there, OnAvaya helps them to get into the cloud without the risks of taking on a data centre. The two offerings provide the same services, but are really geared to different partner bases.”

Kuch said that pricing compared to on-prem IP Office is complex, but that the hybrid cloud is designed to be competitive with the on-prem, not undercut it.

“We try to be price competitive for fair market value versus IP Office,” he said. “IP Office was never geared to be a price leader and these aren’t either. They are geared to be price competitive.”