Positive Outlook Predicted for Unified Communications and Collaboration Solutions in Nigeria as Benefits Become Clear 

More than 45% of enterprises in Nigeria are planning to deploy unified communications and collaboration (UCC) solutions in the next three years, according to the latest research from global IT market intelligence firm International Data Corporation (IDC). Referencing its 'Unified Communications Trends and Priorities in Nigeria 2013 Survey Results' report, IDC today said it expected the adoption of convergence technologies to increase over the coming years as enterprises transform their business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) models in order to exploit the opportunities offered by these solutions.

Based on its survey results, IDC expects the uptake of UCC solutions in Nigeria to blossom over time as the substantial cost savings, simplified management, reduced latency, improved customer experience, and increased workforce productivity brought about by UCC will undoubtedly prove attractive to organizations of all sizes. In line with this development, the local organizational practice of buying individual services such as telephony, instant messaging, audio/videoconferencing, and email from different vendors is expected to decline over the course of 2014.

"Email applications stand out as the most used element of UCC among Nigerian enterprises," says Oluwole Babatope, a research analyst for telecommunications and media at IDC West Africa. "However, the more advanced elements of UCC, such as conferencing applications, enterprise social software, and videoconferencing/telepresence equipment, have yet to gain traction in local enterprises due to the inadequate telecommunications infrastructure currently seen in Nigeria. Consequently, we expect the uptake of advanced UCC applications to occur over the longer term as the infrastructure required to support advanced services steadily improves in the country."

"The future technological priorities of Nigerian enterprises are clear," continues Babatope. "They will increasingly focus on upgrading their existing infrastructures, expanding their network capacities, improving their data backup and recovery capabilities, strengthening their WAN/network security protocols, and enhancing the performance of applications on WAN topologies. Each of these priorities will contribute to increased adoption of UCC in the country."

Overall, IDC expects the implementation of UCC solutions in Nigeria to remain on a positive growth trajectory as such applications are slowly but surely being incorporated into the business processes of Nigerian organizations. Meanwhile, on the vendor side, IDC's survey identified Cisco, Avaya, and Microsoft as the leading vendors of UCC solutions in Nigeria.

IDC's 'Unified Communications Trends and Priorities in Nigeria 2013 Survey Results' (IDC #CEMA20755) provides a succinct overview of the latest UCC trends and priorities in Nigeria. The study includes an overview of key industry developments in communications convergence, the major UCC players in Nigeria, and the key technology priorities for organizations. It also provides an insightful analysis of the UCC environment in most enterprises in Nigeria and assesses their options for the future. The insights are based on continuous research with technology leads in various SMBs and large organizations, as well as on interviews with industry experts and inputs from IDC analysts on the ground in Africa.