Accenture and Cisco expand partnership to encompass UC, IT services

Accenture and Cisco have decided to take their partnership up a notch, creating a group to help large enterprises implement unified communications, collaboration and data center virtualization capabilities into their business processes.

In the relationship, the Accenture & Cisco Business Group will design, build and run a portfolio of business solutions to integrate UC and collaboration tools into multiple apps across a company's IT infrastructures. The first three solutions will focus on customer contact transformation - i.e. CRM and call center improvements - infrastructure transformation, and unified communications and collaboration. Accenture gets to provide the consulting services and expertise in business processes while Cisco integrates its understanding -- and products - for UC, collaboration and data center virtualization.

Cisco seems to be determined to steam-roller out of networking and into the IT space by any and all means necessary. Discussion has been hot and heavy on Cisco's imminent entry into the server space, providing a box that would run a variety of virtualized applications.

Of course, such efforts can't help but irritate telecom providers with their own designs upon large enterprises, specifically Verizon Business and the AT&T's enterprise division. Microsoft is likely feeling a little blue as well, since its UC partner - Nortel - is sorting through bankruptcy.

For more:
- Cisco press release

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Cisco buys Jabber - FierceVoIP
New data center dynamics at play - FierceTelecom
Verizon Business joins virtualization parade - FierceTelecom

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