Cisco UK & Ireland Blog

Making collaboration Spark

April 27, 2016

I was thrilled to present at UC Expo last week about some of the amazing things we can help businesses achieve through collaboration and our Cisco Spark platform.

One of the challenges we wanted to solve with Spark was breaking down siloes that organisations are operating within, when communicating both internally and externally.

We want to change all that with Spark, breaking down the barriers of business-to-business communication. Spark allows users to change the way they operate not just internally, but the way they work with their customers; supported by the cloud and powered by APIs.

If you’re unfamiliar with Spark, let me explain what it’s all about.

For us, it’s very much about enabling teams, not only within one business but across different organisations as well. Spark helps small communities of people who need to get work done, in the privacy of their own virtual room – you can write notes, you can save files, and you can secure it.

But Spark is more than just messaging, file sharing, and conferencing. It can actually use APIs as a way of changing how users conduct business and collaborate online as well.

This opens up a new way of working for teams, but also the way in which IT as a whole is being consumed.

Traditionally an IT vendor could release as many as three software updates a year, but organisations struggle to stay up to date if IT implementations take between six to 12 months. In Spark, there’s no waiting for the next update – in the last three months alone we’ve opened up 40 new features.

On top of this, an IT manager can still enable policy and dictate what services users have access to; meaning they still get the visibility and control which they may desire.

Putting users first

Spark is designed to work seamlessly across desktop and mobile. This allows users to collaborate through Spark wherever they are in the world, be that working from home, whilst travelling, or back at base in the office.

This helps people breakaway from the traditional desktop way of working. People want the best possible experience from a ‘consumer-style’ app that helps them stay in touch with their colleagues no matter where they are. This design philosophy has been built into the whole service.

Over time you’re also going to see us opening up even more APIs – and we’re even challenging developers to think about new and different ways for people to use the platform.

There’s a slice of a £150m developer fund up for grabs – just pitch us your idea and (if we like it!) we’ll co-invest with you to make them a reality.

This is an incredibly new and exciting area for us, and we really believe this will change the way in which people collaborate!

Check out the free version of Cisco Spark and download your free trial version today.

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