IMCCA announced the recipients of the 2020 UC Industry Impact Awards for contributions and outstanding support during the pandemic. The names, as selected by a panel of five independent industry expert judges, were unveiled during the live IMCCA Collaboration Thanksgiving Webcast on Nov. 17, 2020.
“The UC Industry Impact Award honorees pushed the boundaries of UC technology and in so doing profoundly improved the user experience during a monumental shift in organizational structures and processes resulting from the pandemic,” said Carol Zelkin, executive director, IMCCA. “We congratulate all the outstanding nominees and these award recipients, and look forward to their continued contributions which benefit both the general public and the industry.”
Nominees for the Industry Impact Awards (all of which can be seen at https://www.collaborationweek.org/2020-impact-award-nominees) were selected by IMCCA Executive Board and Board Members. Then, a completely independent judging panel selected three nominees from each of the categories (Collaboration Platforms; Hardware & Peripherals; Integrators & Service Providers; and Distributors & Miscellaneous Organizations.) The independent judges were Irwin Lazar of Nemertes Research; Blair Pleasant of Commfusion; Dan Ferrisi of Sound & Communications; Roopam Jain of Frost & Sullivan; and Tim Banting of Omdia.
2020 UC Industry Impact Award Winners and Judges’ Criteria
- Collaboration Platforms — LogMein / GoToMeeting — The team at GoToSuite / LogMeIn provided free emergency remote work kits for health care providers, educational institutions, municipalities and nonprofit organizations when the pandemic struck, enabling critical work to continue remotely.
- Collaboration Platforms — Microsoft Teams — Microsoft not only provided its Microsoft Teams platform which absorbed the surge in Work From Home employees, in addition, the company launched a global skills initiative to help people hardest hit by the pandemic by making tools and resources available to learn digital skills.
- Collaboration Platforms — Zoom — Zoom led all Industry Impact Nominees with ten nominations. No other UC firm rose to the challenge of COVID-19 as overwhelmingly as Zoom, becoming a global verb synonymous with video for business, healthcare, education, and religious and social events, and in many cases was provided at no cost for the good of the greater community.
- Hardware & Peripherals — Crestron — When the pandemic struck, Crestron designed, built and shipped an entirely new system to enable collaboration in nontraditional spaces, turning field hospitals, manufacturing floors and large classrooms into Teams and Zoom rooms overnight.
- Hardware & Peripherals — Logitech — Logitech enabled millions of people around the world with its tools, helping them feel part of their work, connected to their loved ones, as normal as possible during the pandemic, and created a program to specifically help educators.
- Hardware & Peripherals — Poly — Whether in the school, enterprise or living room, using Poly’s devices during COVID-19 gave people a professional meeting experience without hassle. Its AI systems inside a catalog that has the unique breadth to cover all UC needs let users choose the best experience anywhere and at any time. For just one example, its Studio USB’s new rapid automatic tracking mode freed teachers to again walk around a classroom when presenting to remote students.
- Integrators & Service Providers — AVI-SPL — AVI-SPL pivoted quickly to provide newly assigned home workers with technology starter kits and dedicated courses on “working remotely” for first timers. The speed and quality of their solution demonstrated an enormous commitment to customer service.
- Integrators & Service Providers — Poly — When COVID-19 struck, Poly’s Global Services team offered free consulting with UC experts to guide businesses, organizations and individuals on the best technology to enable remote working, network readiness and workspace design, empowering everyone to quickly adapt to the new normal. (Poly was the only double award winner — nominated in three categories and winning in two.)
- Integrators & Service Providers — Yorktel — Yorktel responded to the pandemic’s surge in demand by developing and building hundreds of Rapid Response Carts in a matter of weeks — just one of the steps its Pandemic Response Team took to support thousands of global customers.
- Distributors & Miscellaneous Organizations — AtlasIED — Atlas IED provided tens of thousands of medical grade protective face shields to first responders and those on the front lines, helping ease the crunch for PPE during the pandemic. It manufactured and shipped face shields to almost all fifty U.S. states at no cost.
- Distributors & Miscellaneous Organizations — Legrand AV — Legrand converted one of its Indiana production lines during the height of the pandemic to making 1,000 masks a day.
- Distributors & Miscellaneous Organizations — IMCCA — The IMCCA went above and beyond in its outreach to the UC community during the pandemic. Despite many live events canceled due to COVID-19, The IMCCA conducted online education, webinars, social gatherings and more beginning in March 2020 — a full month before any other organizations or companies managed to adapt to the needed content.
The pandemic has mobilized these and many other UC providers to deliver solutions that will help ensure the continuity and growth of UC technology usage, resulting from the work from home phenomenon coupled with the need to find alternatives for in-person interactions. Zelkin said the UC Industry Impact Awards have been a great opportunity to honor and thank those individuals and organizations who have supported and given visibility to the UC industry’s role in this accomplishment.
“We are fortunate to have such dedicated and innovative players in this industry and we truly appreciate their contributions,” she said. “From individuals such as our own David Danto, IMCCA’s Director of Emerging Technology — who worked tirelessly to drive outreach as the pandemic began — to organizations such as Zoom whose name has become synonymous with UC technology, our industry is to be commended for the responsible leadership it has shown in helping organizations keep working through this unprecedented situation, and prepare our world for the Hybrid Working future that’s upon us.”