Global Reach Requires Local Presence
In the digital era, the whole world is your marketplace. Thanks to technologies such as cloud communications and the ubiquitous internet, your customers, partners, and employees can be anywhere, and interact with your business as if you were down the street. At least, some of them can.
While a global strategy can look good on paper, it can be remarkably challenging to execute. The corporate network may not extend to some of your most important markets. Customers may find it difficult to reach you; employees may feel disengaged; and your network, commercial, and legal teams may be frustrated by the complex requirements for keeping your business connected in unfamiliar territory.
Many multinational businesses face these challenges daily in their interactions with customers, partners, and employees in the dynamic Chinese market. Bolstered by a thriving post-COVID economy – estimated by the IMF to grow by 8.4% in 2021 – China continues to be attractive for its skilled workforce, high-tech industries, and a rising middle class of customers willing to spend.
This is why multinational businesses will welcome 8×8’s recent announcement of the expansion of its cloud-based communications solution into Mainland China. For the first time, companies can serve all their customers, employees, and partners in China and around the world with the same high-quality voice communications, team chat, video meetings, contact center, and analytics services.
Here are five ways the expansion will help you realize your global business strategy.
1. Ensure consistent customer experience.
80% of large businesses worldwide cite “improved customer experience” as a top goal for 2021. Especially in light of the COVID pandemic, which disrupted customer relationships, enterprises are prioritizing investments that “ensure customer trust” (cited as a top-3 priority by 30% of large enterprises) and “improving/retaining brand strength and loyalty” (cited by 27%).
But your brand suffers when customers in different geographies have disparate experiences. Valued customers in mainland China – like those in New York and Singapore and London – deserve to be able to reach you easily, to hear a friendly voice in the local language, and to have their account information available immediately. 8×8’s expansion of its communications platform into China ensures you bring a consistent, high-quality customer experience – including local, city-specific direct inward dial (DID) numbers— to more of your valued customers.
2. Foster employee productivity.
The COVID pandemic reinforced the importance of collaboration tools, as businesses scrambled to connect workers who formerly had shared a roof, a workspace, or business premises. For enterprises that prioritize productivity and innovation, the same urgency applies to employees around the globe. If your employees are unable to work together easily and efficiently, your business will be unable to fully leverage the “brain trust” you have invested in. 75% of large businesses worldwide say the ability for frontline workers, office workers, and managers to interact efficiently is “very important” or “crucial” to worker performance. Yet only 61% of large enterprises worldwide have deployed common collaboration tools to all employees, regardless of geography. 8×8’s expansion enables employees in China to fully engage in your business, sharing content and communicating effectively with their colleagues worldwide, via a common interface.
3. Maintain local partnerships.
Global organizations rely on their worldwide network of partners for critical business functions, such as materials sourcing, manufacturing, distribution, and sales. To ensure operations run consistently and efficiently, this often requires bringing partners into your network and processes. In fact, 37% of large businesses provide their partners with access to mobile business applications. Thanks to 8×8’s partnership with China Mobile International, the overseas subsidiary of China Mobile, which is China’s largest telecommunications company, you can support your own partners in mainland China with the full range of communications, collaboration, and contact center tools, hosted in local data centers.
4. Demonstrate local commitment.
To attract the best and the brightest talent in a fast-growing economy like China, firms must have a strong local presence. After all, even when employees work for a global firm, they are part of a local economy that has little to do with the overseas headquarters. Your local employees recruit staff, contract with suppliers, engage customers, and schedule service appointments within their own cities and neighborhoods. If your communications platform can’t support local dialing, or forces calls to travel all the way to the overseas headquarters location and then back again, you’re sending the message that you’re not interested in the region where your employees work. 8×8’s local investments – including in-country data centers and the partnership with China Mobile International – support your own commitment to China, allowing in-country employees to make local calls as easily as international calls.
5. Reduce complexity, while ensuring compliance with local regulations.
As every multinational firm is aware, the global economy does not erase national sovereignty. As firms enter each market and territory, they must respect and comply with local regulations. In some countries, such as China, regulatory requirements can be onerous, complex, and evolving – driving up costs and drawing time and attention away from core business operations.
That’s where a partner like 8×8 is valuable. 8×8 has developed strong business and technology relationships with China Mobile International, to deliver a consistent, reliable, high-quality communications platform to constituents in China. Because 8×8 has done the hard work of establishing and maintaining operations in China, you can concentrate on your business.
The Last Word
Successful multinational firms understand that global brand strength must be backed by a thoughtful local presence. 8×8’s expansion of its communications platform into China gives you the tools to extend your globalization strategy within one of the fastest-growing economies in the world. This will enable you to support:
- Your global brand – by ensuring a consistent, superior customer experience and the ability for all employees to interact globally, via a common interface
- Local employees, customers, and partners – by offering welcoming touches such as local dialing and toll-free numbers
Furthermore, 8×8’s roadmap includes plans to expand its extensive 43-country reach into other important regions that many companies find difficult or cumbersome to bring into the corporate fold. With 8×8 as your communications platform provider, your company can finally deliver on the promise of your global strategy.