As we prepare for our annual Sales Kick-Off, I’ve spent the week reflecting on my past seven years working at BlueJeans. When I joined this company, there were only 15-20 of us in a small office in Santa Clara; now, BlueJeans is a 600+ person, global organization servicing some of the largest corporations across the globe with the best meetings platform in the world. Needless to say, some things have changed.
Allow me to take you on a quick journey of reflection. When we started BlueJeans, we set out with a vision to make video meetings ubiquitous. In our view, people should be able to join a video call from any device, any network, at any time. For this, we saw the gap between traditional video conferencing room systems from the likes of Cisco and Polycom (among others) and a user of Skype. Indeed. this is what many looked to us for in that first year. We were “the company that connects Skype to rooms systems.” This was a challenge that perplexed many for years prior. And we did it well. But there was so much more to what we were building.
As we launched the product in May 2011, it became clear that BlueJeans was not just a Skype gateway, but rather the dawn of the next generation of video conferencing solutions. No longer was there a need for high cost, purpose-built MCUs. The challenges of connecting companies together without needing session border controllers or creating security risks by making a network segment public were quickly becoming a thing of the past. Some of the most recognizable brands in the world looked to us to help them redefine what video communications should look like for them. Smaller and emerging startups looked to us to help them build a more connected workforce as they scaled, without the capital expense that was historically associated with video conferencing. The success we were seeing was, once again, just the beginning of something great.
The incumbents began to lose market share. Acquisitions were made in an effort to provide a similar solution. There were attempts to create similar services based on existing hardware portfolios. New players in the market emerged out of the shadows of web conferencing technologies, and all of this was the sign that we had done something great. We had redefined a market and set the pace for the next wave in conferencing solutions.
Over the years, BlueJeans has expanded market presence and capabilities. While we started as a cloud-based bridging solution for the video conferencing market, we are now a true enterprise meetings platform for virtually any use case. While we were once a single product startup looking to solve the challenges of interoperability, we are now a thriving market leader with multiple products and features. And while interoperability is still important, the picture for BlueJeans is now much larger.
So where are we now as we get ready for what is sure to be an amazing new fiscal year?
Integration is a key driving factor. With our robust portfolio of offerings including Meetings, Rooms, and Events, backed by data and analytics available through Command Center, BlueJeans is bringing the video meetings experience to where our users work. This means not only physical locations, but also workplace applications. BlueJeans integrates with mail clients such as Gmail and Microsoft Outlook, asynchronous messaging applications like Slack and Skype for Business, and new and exciting team productivity suites like Workplace by Facebook and Microsoft Teams. The BlueJeans experience is just a click or two away in in almost any situation.
Our technology partnership with Dolby has changed not only how we view meetings, but how we hear them as well. It is no secret that audio has always been one of the biggest challenges in video conferencing. Dolby Audio helps BlueJeans turn what is typically lackluster audio quality in most solutions into a game-changing, immersive audio experience that cannot be beaten.
Here we are at the start of 2018. So much has changed, but our commitment to innovation, and to providing the best meetings platform for our customers, has not. Reflecting on all of this, it is easy to get excited about what we have done and continue to do. When we think about the video communications market, there is the Good, there is the Better, and then there is BlueJeans.
About the Author
Robb Woods is a long time veteran of the visual collaboration and unified communications industry. During his career, he has been integral in the video conferencing deployment strategies of numerous global organizations, acting as a trusted advisor to manufacturers and customers alike. With his vast knowledge of video communications technologies and his innate ability to understand and deliver on client needs, Robb has earned the respect of customers and industry veterans alike. He is extremely dedicated to providing world-class customer support in both pre- and post-sales environments. Robb is currently the Head of Worldwide Sales Engineering at BlueJeans Network, which he joined in early 2011.More Content by Robb Woods