In less than two weeks, we are hosting Experience Avaya APAC in Singapore, a city that ranks alongside the likes of Dubai and New York as a global business hub. As I get ready for this event, those two cities are very much top of mind for me right now – and it’s because of blockchain.
By now, just about everybody is aware of blockchain, which likely originated in the Asia-Pacific region as part of the development of Bitcoin. While Bitcoin seems to have gone through its bubble moment, blockchain is definitely here to stay.
This is in fact a great example of how ideas are born and developed, as a community of people get together to turn these ideas into solutions to personal, business and even global. Invented to serve one purpose, we’ve only started figuring out just what blockchain can do. In my world of technology and customer service, we would say we are developing use cases. Our job is to figure out how technologies can be leveraged to solve a use case, a business problem, a social challenge and so on.
The inspiration to develop use cases can’t come from a single source – ideas come from everyone and everywhere. We have a team that picks up on those ideas and plays around with technology, putting the pieces together to create use cases to solve problems that are brought to us by our ecosystem or the customers we serve.
The Avaya Happiness Index on Blockchain is one of those use cases. Inspired by the Dubai government’s drive to improve the citizen experience – and quite literally make it a happier place to be in – our team, with our partners, looked at how blockchain could help track sentiment and enable organisations to respond more quickly to user trends.
We showed the Avaya Happiness Index on Blockchain to the world at GITEX in Dubai last year – and it was a huge hit. While plenty of companies are keen to use the word “blockchain” we didn’t present a concept, we delivered a use case. Real-time sentiment analysis may seem a very long way away from cryptocurrency, but we’ve demonstrated how this technology can enhance the citizen/customer experience. The value of bitcoin may rise and fall according to market demand, but the ability to make people happier? That is priceless.
I’m proud to say that the Avaya Happiness Index on Blockchain was a Gold winner for innovation at the world-renowned Edison Awards in New York this week, a milestone achievement for the Avaya team, and for our partners, Avanza Innovations and Sundown.ai. By combining our efforts, we’ve created something of real value – a concept we call value co-creation.
When I meet with customers in Singapore this month, I will talk more about value co-creation. In today’s fast-moving digital world, it is no longer viable for technology companies like ours to create products and solutions and just push them out to market. Real value doesn’t come from a packaged solution; it comes from stakeholders working together and combining to create better outcomes. Avaya realised this several years ago, and we opened our platforms to make it easier and faster for customers, partners and suppliers to work with us. The end goal is to share the value creation process across our digital ecosystem so that the end result is magnified for all.
For me, it doesn’t matter so much who originated a technology. What matters is what we can do with it. The Avaya Happiness Index on Blockchain isn’t just a use case for blockchain – it’s a proof point of Avaya’s business approach and cultural belief.
I’m looking forward to Experience Avaya APAC in Singapore because I know that plenty of organisations share our belief – this event will give us the opportunity to come together and lay the groundwork for future collaboration. I can’t say where that will take us, but maybe it might just take some of us to New York next year for the Edison Awards 2019!
Author: Nidal Abou-Ltaif, President, Avaya International