Its been just over a year since Amazon launched the Quick Start offerings for Amazon Connect. Quick Starts are designed to be seamless and deployed in a few simple steps. Originally presented with just 5 integrations, today you have 16 to choose from. Just take a look at what’s offered:
Traditionally, integrations of this nature would have been a significant investment involving scores of people and many months of planning. While the Quick Start approach is not new, it’s certain to be new to the enterprise contact center space. When you stop and consider what’s going on in the industry today, you can really start to see how Amazon Connect is going to differentiate itself in a busy CCaaS Market.
What are ‘Quick Starts’?
This is best described by Amazon.
Quick Starts are built by AWS solutions architects and partners to help you deploy popular solutions on AWS, based on AWS best practices for security and high availability.
What you actually get depends on the integration. For many CRM offers, you will be installing an adapter from the CRM AppStore and then a CloudFormation template within your own AWS Account, which will then guide you through the installation.
How Quick is Quick?
Building the infrastructure for some of the quick-starts will take minutes while others may take longer (maybe a day). Some of the integrations will require you to “consume” them.
For example, let’s assume you’re using a Voice Analytics API. You will get an API Key, run the Quick-start and then you’re ready to use it. But you will still need to configure Amazon Connect to consume the service within the Contact Flows. Trying to automate this process is likely to be a challenge never to be won as there are just too many use cases.
What is the Value?
By being able to utilize and build upon the power of AWS, Amazon Connect can provide benefits to the customers as never seen before in the CCaaS arena.
- Lowers the barrier to entry
Your barrier to entry is lower to try market-leading products. Long sales cycles are greatly reduced as you will be able to switch to another provider as you see fit (unless of course, you signed a long term contract.)
- Pay as you use pricing model becomes closer to reality
Depending on the 3rd party integration you use, it’s likely many will offer a pay per use model, especially the API companies.
The pay as you use model means you’ll be able to track the cost for each contact should you wish to.
You’ll move away from vendor lock-in and high on-boarding costs will be abnormal, providing you with you ‘type 2’ decisions.
- The right solution for the right job
Choose the right product for the right job – or have 2 or 3 solutions! I’d never advocate for over-complexity, however, you may need X solution for 80% of your contacts and Y solution for the other 20%. You can make this happen! (Similarly should Department A want it and are willing to pay, maybe now they can)
Likewise, if you only want to do high touch Voice Analytics on high-value calls, by tagging this in Amazon Connect you can use your premium 3rd party solutions for only what you need.
- Test and Learn / Proof of Concepts
By using Quick-Start packages you’ll be able to test out market-leading services within a shorter space of time than ever before. You’ll be able to learn what products and services work best for you and use those in your production environment.
For large enterprises, you can create meaningful Proof of Concepts for relatively little cost which reduces your risk of migrating workloads.
- Server-less for the most part
Amazon will drive Technology Partners to use Server-less technology as best as they can (my take!). The reason for this is that it fits in with the Amazon Connect model of being able to scale on-demand, with no servers to patch/manage which in turn means low operational overheads.
What might not be perfectly clear here is that these ‘quick-start’ services, in the most part, are going to be SaaS offerings. That’s great, we all love SaaS. As a result, what is actually deployed in your AWS Account is a gateway service to the 3rd parties’ service. This means the architecture for these solutions, as shown from the Amazon Connect site, is over the Internet
I’m very excited about Quick Starts and seeing the industry grow from 5 to 16 in a year has been great. I suspect that this will only increase over time. The quality, features and speed that is being provided are unparalleled. #reUseNotRecreate