A comment on an earlier post seemed worthy of it’s own discussion. Relating to some earlier posting about Telecom’s plans re SMEs and SaaS, I’m stoked to see that Victoria Crone from Telecom has both read the original post, and fronted up and replied.

In my opinion it shows a willingness on Telecom’s part to move away from its closed non-communicative ways of old, and to enter into dialogue, be it positive or critical.

Victoria’s post is copied here for those interested in where these projects are at;

Victoria here from Telecom. Thanks for the comments here everyone, it’s great to see the level of interest in what we’re trying to achieve. Here’s an update on where we’re at.

The new Telecom Business site has gone live, with information on all our services in a much easier to use format and can be found here http://www.telecombusinesshub.co.nz. We’ve had good feedback on this and are always keen for more. This is just the start. We’re in testing now for the next update which includes the domain and web services mentioned above and that will go live soon (sorry, can’t give exact dates and as you’ll know not everything goes smoothly in large scale technology projects!!) We have a lot more planned for this site. Concerns have been raised about our ability to understand and be relevant to business. We’ve been working with many smaller sized businesses over the past year, and have just confirmed 100 or so across the country that we’re working with directly on developing our services. So I guess what I’m saying is we want your feedback and if you’re interested in working more directly with us we’re keen as mustard.

It’s clear that bloggers are critical and sceptical of our ability to deliver this and we’re held to a high standard. So we’re working very hard to make sure what is put out is robust and won’t disappoint therefore we’ve been testing, trialling and in beta for a whole lot of stuff. A couple of examples, not enough space to go through them all (!) – we’ve trialed a new approach to the broadband help desk for business customers and we’re hearing it’s way better so we’re working through moving it from trial to launch – we’ve also been in trials for Managed Desktop services and are learning heaps about how we bring this service to the NZ businesses.

Re: SaaS, I’ve had a number of SaaS companies in NZ and internationally approach me based on March announcements. Personally, I’m conscious that this market has been tried before so taking learnings from the past, spending time internationally to see what’s driving success and working out how we support and make this market successful in NZ is critical. I continue to be blown away by the talent and entrepreneurship in this space.

On a closing note, as they say proof of the pudding is in the eating and hopefully the fact that we’re watching and taking part in the conversation in the blogososphere space indicates our openess.

Disclosure – Diversity Limited is a consultant to Telecom New Zealand and its subsidiaries.

Ben Kepes

Ben Kepes is a technology evangelist, an investor, a commentator and a business adviser. Ben covers the convergence of technology, mobile, ubiquity and agility, all enabled by the Cloud. His areas of interest extend to enterprise software, software integration, financial/accounting software, platforms and infrastructure as well as articulating technology simply for everyday users.

  • It’s kind of interesting. Good on Telecom, but I get the feel that for this to succeed, they can’t just roll out a plan – they’ve got to actually participate in and be trusted within the existing SaaS/Software industry culture in New Zealand. That’s a good thing. Like bringing your bank manager to a party that’s been going on, to meet your friends. There’ll be resistance, but over time, there’ll be acceptance and everyone will find a level playing field.

  • Hmmm. I post a question in a 2-month old thread and up pops someone from Telecom to reply :-))

  • Stu – that’s a good thing – isn’t it?

    Shows they’re watching the important blogs 😉

  • Yes, good to know.

    From my perspective as an ISP, I now know that the enemy is Google-adept and blog-aware 🙂 Next evolution will be a Telecom Facebook page where you can sign up for broadband by becoming a friend.

  • Yes… But a friend of who?

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