Blog | 04.04.2024

Enterprise Connect’s Top 5 Takeaways!

With over 5,000 industry leaders in attendance and an action-packed expo, join me for a rundown of my key takeaways and most memorable moments from Enterprise Connect. From innovative announcements to insightful discussions led by industry giants like Nicole Herskowitz from Microsoft, Javed Khan representing Cisco, Smita Hashim from Zoom, and Kira Makagon of RingCentral, we’ll delve into the trends, challenges, and solutions shaping the modern workplace and transforming the employee experience.

Top 5 Takeaways

1. Modern workplace dynamics:

Challenges and Solutions: The event emphasized the pressing need to address the complexities of flexible work arrangements. Companies discussed strategies to optimize collaboration and productivity in this new paradigm. At the same time, Cisco unveiled the findings of a Hybrid Work Study that underscores the critical role of modernizing offices in enhancing hybrid work and increasing employee productivity and satisfaction. This mirrors a lot of the feedback we hear from our customers.

These announcements and sessions reflect a broader trend in the modern workplace towards leveraging advanced technologies, especially AI, to improve communication, collaboration, and employee engagement. The focus on hybrid work and AI-driven tools indicates a commitment to enhancing productivity and flexibility in workplace dynamics, addressing the evolving needs of businesses and their employees.

2. Video’s Power:

Importance of Video: While the significance of video in the modern workplace was underscored, it was noted that by some estimations, only around 7% of rooms are currently video-enabled! This highlights a considerable opportunity for growth and innovation in this space. The Hybrid Work Study cited above reveals that 72% of employees are optimistic about returning to the office but want better-equipped spaces for collaboration and brainstorming, not individual workspaces.

Many of the vendors at the conference highlighted the evolution of intelligent meeting rooms through AI, reiterating the importance of AI in reshaping meeting experiences and enhancing collaboration in a hybrid work environment, not only during meetings or a moment in time but also before and after, maintaining the collaboration continuum. Some of the conference’s mainstays, like Cisco and HP/Poly, took to the show to highlight new hardware, from smart boards to reimagined desk phones and videoconferencing devices. Others took a more software- and services-focused route, like Zoom with the introduction of Workspace and Twilio with its new AI features.

3. AI Revolutionizes Experiences:

AI for Enhancement: AI was so prevalent that the event introduced new tracks dedicated to AI and automation, data and analytics, and the future of communications and collaboration, spotlighting the significant role of copilots, digital assistants, and generative AI in transforming enterprise communication strategies. AI has undoubtedly emerged as a pivotal tool for enhancing employee and customer experiences. Every major UC/CX player showcased AI-enabled features and experiences, signaling its increasing integration into everyday operations.

Throughout the event, the fusion of AI and collaboration technologies emerged as a recurring theme, with industry leaders recognizing its potential to redefine employee experiences and customer interactions in the modern workplace.

What I found different and exciting this year was the focus on practical applications beyond the Contact Center – knowledge workers and even frontline workers – and implementation challenges or considerations such as data sovereignty, privacy, and security. AI is already making an impact by giving users new insights and making meetings and phone calls more efficient.

4. Unlikely alliances and other significant announcements:

Strategic Partnerships: Companies like Avaya, Cisco, RingCentral, Microsoft, and Zoom made significant announcements, ranging from product realignment and new strategic partnerships to the launch of innovative solutions aimed at improving collaboration and communication.

Zoom and Avaya announced a strategic partnership to deliver enhanced collaboration experiences to global enterprises. As part of the partnership, Avaya selected Zoom Workplace — Zoom’s AI-powered collaboration platform that will include meetings, team chat, scheduler, whiteboard, spaces, and more —  to integrate with Avaya’s Communication & Collaboration Suite, providing customers with a new streamlined way to manage their communications environments and workflows.

Several UCaaS vendors announced new CC/CX capabilities, enhancements, or strategic alliances to unify the EX, CX, and data since all communication is on the same platform, reducing inconsistent experiences and siloed data.

Particularly interesting to me was the release or announcement by multiple vendors of simple and cost-effective CC/CX lite functionality targeted to smaller businesses that don’t need a fully-fledged CCaaS platform or organizations that already have a formal contact center operation but want employees from across the enterprise to chip in. Announcements in this category included the general availability of Webex CX Basic and Essential packages and what could represent Microsoft’s long-awaited entrance into the CC/CX arena with the new Teams Queue App.

Is true Fixed-Mobile Convergence finally here? Major carriers such as AT&T and Verizon announced what one of them described as a “New Era of 5G and AI with secure, mobile-first Unified Communication Solutions”. These solutions integrate a business mobile number seamlessly with some of the major UCaaS platforms (Webex Calling and Microsoft Teams Phone), creating a single, flexible business identity for mobile, desk, and Teams so users can work flexibly and securely from any location or device.

5. Innovation Recognized:

Best of Enterprise Connect Awards: Notable winners included RingCentral for Overall Winner, Genesys for Innovation in Customer Experience, and Barco and Yealink for Innovation in Meetings/Conferencing, among others. These awards highlighted the commitment to innovation across various aspects of Employee Experience (EX) and Customer Experience (CX).

Other Highlights from our Strategic Partners


In addition to the strategic partnership with Zoom, Avaya expanded its commitment to the Avaya Experience Platform – a single, unified platform encompassing Avaya solutions for customer experience (CX). The move aligns with the company’s vision, which enables Avaya to accelerate roadmap delivery and makes it easier for Enterprise customers to innovate without disruption, deliver exceptional experiences to their customers and employees, and drive measurable business growth.


Cisco unveiled new AI-enabled experiences and multifunctional collaboration devices tailored for modern work environments – Cisco Board Pro G2 and 9800 Series Hybrid Work Phones.

Lots of new CX features: Webex CX Essentials, Webex Workforce Optimization, New CRM Integrations for SFDC, Dynamics, and SNOW. New immersive experiences with Webex Suite, including Webex for Apple Vision Pro and Webex with Ford Digital and new AI Assistant capabilities such as call summarization and message translation.

RingCentral (Best of Enterprise Connect Overall Award for 2024):

RingCentral introduced RingEX, powered by RingSense AI, and a new unmatched uptime SLA of 99.9999%. Furthermore, significant updates were made to RingCX features, enhancing its value proposition in the market.

RingEX with RingSense AI means that AI is being injected across phone calls, SMS, meetings, and messaging, including real-time call notes, messaging recap, and GenAI search across conversations. RingCentral said this combination will help boost efficiency and teamwork across every interaction.


Microsoft showcased its mission to alleviate workers’ digital debt with innovations like Copilot, aimed at streamlining communication and collaboration. New uptime SLA commitments and intelligent call recaps further underscored Microsoft’s dedication to empowering modern workplaces.

Addressing the challenge of digital debt, where users spend significant time managing emails and meetings, Nicole Herskowitz stressed the transformative potential of AI to alleviate this burden. Organizations embracing AI, particularly within platforms like Microsoft Teams, are positioned to differentiate themselves in the evolving landscape. Microsoft’s commitment to enhancing Teams’ foundation included improvements in performance, reliability, and ease of use, with features like Copilot, an AI-powered productivity assistant, standing out.

Other significant updates and announcements for Microsoft Teams included improved call routing settings for external calls, a UI overhaul, and the new Teams Queue App—Microsoft’s first venture into the CC/CX space. The new Teams Queue App supports call queues within Microsoft Teams, allowing call queue agents to efficiently handle, view, and collaborate on support calls directly in Teams.


Zoom is calling it the most significant product announcement it will make all year: its new, AI-powered collaboration platform, Zoom Workplace.

Zoom Workplace is an open platform that lets end users and businesses integrate Zoom or other apps into Zoom to give users one place to work. Today, Zoom Workplace supports over 2,500 integrations in the Zoom App Marketplace.

In addition to Zoom Workplace, the company at Enterprise Connect unveiled 40+ innovations, including new Zoom AI Companion features for Zoom Phone, Team Chat, Events, and Contact Center, and an expansion to include Ask AI Companion, a new way to interact with AI Companion across the Zoom platform. Ask AI Companion can provide meeting recaps, show relevant action items, draft agendas, and summarize chat, email threads, and documents.

HP Poly

The Fireside Chat featuring Helen Sheirbon focused on the acquisition’s implications for hybrid systems. During the conference, HP Poly announced new video hardware and enhanced Zoom integration.

The company highlighted its Bluetooth direct technology—a user-friendly pairing feature that began as a collaboration between Poly Voyager headsets and selected HP notebooks—but this time for Zoom. The company said Bluetooth direct technology for Zoom is the first time Bluetooth headsets are offering call control for Zoom without a dongle.

HP Poly also showcased its Poly Studio E360 center-of-table camera, the Poly Studio V52 video USB bar, and the Poly Studio E60 12x optical zoom camera.

The HP EliteBook 840 and 845 G11 Notebook PCs are now certified in Zoom’s premium laptop category.

NWN Carousel’s Strategic Partnerships

Throughout the event, the fusion of AI and collaboration technologies emerged as a recurring theme, with industry leaders recognizing its potential to redefine employee experiences and customer interactions in the modern workplace.

NWN Carousel’s strategic partnerships, combined with our comprehensive managed services portfolio, delivered through our award-winning Experience Management Platform, guarantee our ability to equip customers for the future of work.

Discover how our integrated IT solutions can help you transform your workforce into a more collaborative, innovative, and secure customer and employee experience.