Comms Vision 2020: Driving value creation in disruptive times

In what has been an unprecedented year, Comms Vision 2020 (11th-13th November, Gleneagles Hotel) will chart the next big comms market shifts, map the professional services competitive landscape, and explore your potential to create customer value, loyalty and sustainability in times of unparalleled market disruption and change.

Have you considered how much the professional and managed services world will change? Do you have a clear understanding of what will underpin your place in the New Comms Universe – an Age of Powerful Digital Alternatives, Data Supremacy, the Billowing Public Cloud and Unprecedented Competition? Comms Vision 2020 will provide the clarity you need about where we are now in this truly unprecedented year, where the real value of tech companies will reside and the critical role of your organisation’s human capital in helping you get there.

The sum of major trends in public cloud infrastructure procurement, the rise of data-defined business models and the primacy of technologies such as AI – and the march of mega-disruptive alternative providers – is pushing the professional services world into a period of significant change. Not to mention the impact of Covid-19. Already, customers are far more exposed to substitute products and services from new suppliers – and users are more demanding of speed, quality and agility from their service providers. Meanwhile, digitally adept and innovative challengers are emerging in the sector, and resourcing models are being disrupted as major public cloud providers and tech giants continue to gain market share and show great interest in pioneering the wireless connectivity space.

Collision course
That there is no basis from which to launch a definitive claim to existing markets is the ICT sector’s Achilles heel. In truth, the traditional industry players are wide open to forces beyond their control. So much so that the conventional comms channel and its early stage cloud evolution could merely be the precursor to something far bigger – an all-out global revolution in communications driven by Super Disrupters with a strong influence over the future of cloud computing and ICT procurement trends. These Super Disrupters – Microsoft, Amazon and Google etc – and the traditional comms sector are colliding, therefore Comms Vision 2020 will take a hard look at the evolving Collision Zone and assess the channel’s place in an age of ever intensifying competition, business model change and customer value shifts. Against this backdrop we must ask a cardinal question: What will be the channel’s true relationship with customers in this massively transformed and data-centric space?

ICT spending goes public in the cloud
The public cloud market displays strong growth in all regions of the world and Amazon, Microsoft, Google and Alibaba continue to strengthen their grip. Data released late last year by Synergy Research Group shows that these leading four providers of public cloud services accounted for 72 per cent of the worldwide market for IaaS and PaaS in Q3, up from 57 per cent at the beginning of 2016. Amazon’s worldwide market share has held steady at around 40 per cent, while Microsoft, Google and Alibaba have all made gains.

Synergy estimates that worldwide spending on public IaaS and PaaS reached $20 billion in Q3, representing over 80 per cent of the total cloud infrastructure services. Hosted and managed private cloud services, such as those provided by the channel, make up the rest of the market, which it could be argued is under threat from the strong advances made by the big four, especially in light of their growth expectations.

“It has taken just eight quarters for the public IaaS and PaaS markets to double in size and our forecast shows them doubling in size again over the next eleven quarters,” commented John Dinsdale, who is a Chief Analyst at Synergy Research Group. “As spending on public cloud services continues to grow rapidly, the top four cloud providers are strengthening their grip on the market.

“Some of the companies outside the top four are growing at a reasonable pace, but the reality is that in aggregate they continue to lose ground to the market leaders. Outside of some niche services and geographic regions, this is a game where scale of operations, geographic footprint and global brand are key competitive advantages.”

Market rivalry set to intensify
The impact of Super Suppliers, the power and demands of data savvy customers, and the proliferation of substitute products and services all point to more intense market rivalry. The primary drivers of this shift will be the most digitally capable powerhouses with the resources to self-sustainably advance their market positions. But to what extent will the channel be disrupted? And how far will the Super Giants purvey additive or substitutive products and services? Responding to these vital questions, Comms Vision 2020 will provide clarity about where we are, and need to be, on the spectrum between existing business models and the emergence of new competitive forces.

Disrupting tradition and going data-first: Assessing new approaches to business model innovation
To create mechanisms for future value creation we must understand where customer value is moving to – destination data – and how to reposition your organisation to capture that value. Success depends on having a clear view of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and the shifts that need to be made in your business. Why? Because it is true that Data is King, and that we will see the rise of data-first solutions providers.

Comms Vision 2020 will explore the impacts of market trends and technological forces driving industry change and customer value creation, and how you can prepare your business for sustainable long-term growth

More and more customers expect data analytics services that offer real-time insights. A key question is how these priorities will redefine the professional services model, which must adapt to the demands of customers who value insights gleaned from data harvesting, control and management. Data generation and capture will prompt new approaches as data becomes core to the value received by customers. Therefore the real value of tech companies rests in a combination of technical and business understanding, IP ownership and the harvesting and management of data.

Maximising data-centric customer value shifts
There is a fundamental shift in the industry towards a data-led services approach with a high level of personalisation. Now, it is key to look at what the future has in store as organisations move towards cognitive technologies such as Big Data Analytics, Machine Learning, Natural Language Processing, Artificial Intelligence and Robotic Process Automation. All of which could potentially and over time be packaged without complexity and offered by Super Disrupters as simple Big Button Comms, meaning that smaller service providers need to operate creatively in niche markets to create their value.

Innovate your way to success in niche industries
Uncovering opportunities for niche sectors to harness technology is one way to differentiate and secure your future. Comms Vision will explore the reasons why developing a niche market technology practice today could be key to success. And we will see examples of applications and use cases of AI, ML and IoT that will get you under the skin of specific industry sectors. Remaining relevant in an era of ever expanding choices, and being able to stand your ground by delivering innovation to niche sectors, will likely hinge on leveraging ideas, creativity, insight and personalisation, from a data-centric standpoint. So define your future today. Innovation by definition means more growth.

Understanding the critical role of human capital strategies in times of change
As business transformation continues to accelerate as a top business priority, is your talent strategy keeping pace? Human capital strategies are playing an ever increasing role in the sustainability of organisations, none more so than in the fast paced ICT sector which also faces a critical skills gap. Investing in human capital, managing people to improve retention and engagement, and maximising the value of your people resources has never been more important, nor challenging.

Do you know your organisation’s ability to learn and innovate? Do you understand how talent innovation can improve business performance? Can you identify the ‘people factors’ that will drive growth and value; and why a range of capabilities, experiences and diverse perspectives is key to embracing fresh opportunities, delivering improved customer experiences and relishing new challenges? Comms Vision will seek to address these complex questions and provide important insights into how you could culturally align these imperatives with your own long-term business goals.

Disruption and opportunity in the connectivity space
Comms Vision will also explore developments in Fibre, 5G, Wi-Fi 6, and nod towards the grand satellite projects of Mega Disrupters. Is it time to look beyond the boundaries of our immediate experience and view the future from altitude, and ask searching questions? Could the cloud computing Super Giants, those truly global brands, utterly transform business communications? Comms Vision will bring clarity to developments in the developing superfast connectivity space, and examine the potential challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

Capitalising on ten tech sector shifts

No sector is immune from business model revolutions such as those brought about by Über and Netflix. To fully capitalise what is currently happening in the comms sector it is important to understand the trends that are driving the potential for big shifts in the channel’s tectonic plates.

The Connectivity Shift: Fibre, 5G, Wi-Fi 6, satellite and the grand projects of Mega Disrupters. What does it all mean?

The Super Disruptor Shift: The influence of tech giants creating market alternatives continues to strengthen.

Customer Value and the Shift to Data: New business models are emerging that prioritise value in data rather than the product or service. Capturing future customer value and making the transition to become data-driven solutions providers is key.

The Digital Procurement Shift: The digitisation of the path to purchase and rise of disruptive retail models have emerged as consumers fully embrace digital. The influence of consumer purchasing behaviour on future business models in the channel is a key determining factor.

The Innovation Shift: Companies are turning to tech-enabled innovation with growth, relevancy and competitiveness their top objectives – and many will seek help from external partners. Is your business Innovation Ready?

The Customer Experience Shift: Value is no longer created in the transaction, but the engagement and interaction.

The Shift from Products to Services: Value is also created in the consultation, the problems solved, and a cloud services-based subscription model. Speed of execution and completeness of action are also key considerations

The Personalisation Shift: The rise of personalisation will attract ICT spend as buyers shift towards customised products and experiences underpinned by AI and other developing and intelligent technologies.

The Generation Z Shift: Collaboration and social networking technology in the workplace is highly valued.

The Shift to Big Button Comms: Could easy to source, deploy and consume business grade ICT services provided by tech Titans eventually turn conventional provision on its head, increasing the threat of disintermediation as end users get more tech and application savvy?

Comms Vision 2020 will explore all of these market shifts and more – visit

It takes Vision to be a leader
Comms Vision (11th-13th November 2020, Gleneagles Hotel) is the leading annual leadership forum for CEO, MD and CTO delegates making up the major league of the UK reseller community. Places are limited and by invitation: If you would like to join us this year, please register your interest to attend at

Pictured above: The then Minister for Implementation Oliver Dowden CBE opening 2018’s Comms Vision Convention

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