The Australian contact centre applications market grew 11.3% in 2012 from the previous year. Frost & Sullivan anticipates the on premise contact centre market to record moderate growth at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 6.2% from 2012 to 2019. Performance optimisation, quality management and multimedia applications continue to be the main drivers of growth.
Large contact centres running complex solutions are more inclined towards on-premise solutions, but these tend to be resource and capital intensive to deploy and maintain. In addition, most on-premise deployments come with long contract terms, which organisations are becoming increasingly reluctant to commit to. Audrey William, Head of Research, ICT Practice, Frost & Sullivan ANZ says,"Organisations are increasingly evaluating alternative solutions offering similar capabilities with more flexible deployment and payment models; this is driving demand for hosted and hybrid solutions, where vendors such as Interactive Intelligence have been particularly successful.
While the market awareness of hosted contact centre solutions is high, the fully cloud based contact centre market is still at a nascent stage of growth. The cloud based contact centre market in Australia is expected to experience very high growth at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 38.9% from 2012 to 2019 due to a small market base and growing demand from organisations adopting cloud based contact centre solutions.
Hosted contact centres are the preferred option for organisations moving away from the on-premise model. However, the cloud based contact centre market is in the early stages of growth as organisations remain concerned about reliability, security and availability issues of a fully cloud based contact centre model. A hosted contact centre solution with dedicated infrastructure mitigates most of these concerns, thereby serving as the preferred option for organisations.
"As momentum gathers towards third party hosted and delivered contact centre solutions, telcos with their network expertise, will be advantageously positioned to capitalise on this trend. Telcos will be well positioned to leverage their market reach to offer bundled solutions. Telstra and Optus have strong vendor partnerships to go with their carrier and local data centre capabilities. Additionally, global telcos such as BT are strengthening their market presence through vendor partnerships," adds William.
As the market matures, current challenges such as security and lack of vendor choice will be mitigated as the high growth rate will attract new entrants, increasing competition and improving market understanding of cloud based contact centre solutions.
Future cloud contact centre market developments will focus on building local data centre capabilities to address security concerns. Vendors without local data centre capability will be severely challenged to secure customer wins and generate growth. Partnerships between major telcos and systems integrators, such as IPscape's with Telstra Global, to address the cloud based market, will be a strategic focus for cloud contact centre vendors.
Frost & Sullivan's research, Australian Contact Centre Market 2013 reports that while on-premise deployments are currently the preferred deployment model for Australian contact centre solutions, the market is moving towards a third party managed and delivered model. Interactive Intelligence and Nuance were the only vendors to record double digit revenue growth in 2012, indicating a shift in the contact centre applications market. Nuance holds the advantage of operating in a niche market segment of voice and speech based technologies, where it holds a dominant market share. On the other hand, Interactive Intelligence has achieved growth through its ability to offer a breadth of solutions over on-premise or hosted deployment models. Although growing from a small base, its growth is reflective of the demand for flexible deployment models.
Contact centre vendors, Verint Systems and NICE Systems, have leveraged their expertise in surveillance and data monitoring to offer analytics and optimisation solutions. The ability to convert data into actionable information combined with strong industry and channel partnerships gives these vendors a strong presence in the market.
Anand Balasubramanian, Industry Analyst, ICT Practice, Frost & Sullivan ANZ, says "The growing focus on analytics and big data has encouraged specialised vendors to enter the market. For example, 7 started with contact centre solutions and now focuses almost entirely on customer experience solutions and analytics, differentiating itself from other analytics focused vendors by using predictive analytics. With contact centres moving beyond IVRs and ACDs to include other applications such as optimisation and analytics, new vendors offering integrated or specialised stand-alone applications will emerge."
Contact centre vendors are also integrating social media engagement and analysis capabilities with core contact centre solutions. "Offering proactive support, monitoring and tracking of trends across social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram provides a single platform for information consolidation, enabling businesses to spot specific trends and extend customer support over social networking sites. Genesys is promoting its Social Engagement platform as an integrated application while Interactive Intelligence acquired Buzzient, which specialises in integrating business applications such as CRM with social media sites. Social media and customer experience focused vendors such as RightNow (Oracle) will benefit from the demand and offer solutions to integrate with a vendor's contact centre platform" added Balasubramanian.
In July 2013 Frost & Sullivan surveyed 227 IT decision makers in Australia to understand views toward contact centres and some of the findings include:
• 60% of Australian organisations are using on-premise contact centre solutions. 17% of organisations are using hosted contact centres. Just over 10% of organisations have partly migrated to a fully cloud based contact centre solution, where the vendor offers the solution from its own or partner hosted data centres.
• Over 60% of organisations are likely to evaluate or deploy cloud based solutions in the next two years.
• The main requirements for contact centres over the next two years will be providing multi-channel support and implementing optimisation solutions.
Frost & Sullivan Australian Contact Centre Market Report 2013, forms a part of the Frost & Sullivan Enterprise Communications Research program. All research services included in this subscription provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants. The report also includes survey results and statistics of 227 IT decision makers in Australia to understand market behaviour and views towards Unified Communications and Contact Centre Solutions. Respondents were senior management level executives, IT managers and IT decision makers with control of or insight into the technology budget and strategy of their organisation.
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