• What network challenges does the industry face as we head to the middle of 2018 and beyond?
    Maturation and the next stages of development.
  • What technologies do you see changing shaping the industry and how?
    Software Defined Networks and direct private connections to cloud providers will be game changers in our industry. Finding ways to drive more transport in a more efficient manner will continue to be factors ensuring the best user experience.
  • What impact will industry changes have on digital transformation plans within organizations?
    Big Data and Analytics will continue to feed the business landscape. Our move to a virtual world where handshakes are a networking term vs. human interacting directly. Big Data will continue to be leverages as well helping companies answer questions that may have been done via surveys or focus groups in the past. "How is your brand viewed? What do your clients think? Why? How can you change behaviour?" All decisions moving forward will be based on big data and what people "do" vs. what people "say".
  • How important is SDN for the industry and what is your company doing to implement and deploy this technology capability?
    Many of our partners leverage SDN today and look to us (INDATEL) to help them extend services to rural America. Some of the toughest locations to reach is where our networks tend to be located. If it is Rural America, Call INDATEL.
  • Are you seeing Artificial Intelligence and/or Machine Learning deployed (or planning to deploy) in your business - and how?
    Not yet in our wholesale realm where we focus much of our attention today. A.I. will be something we will access to determine "if, when and how" it provides us an advantage in the marketplace. Especially as we become a direct provider to Enterprise and Government in the coming years.
  • What broad trends do you see in telecoms in the next 12 months?
    I see more consolidation in telecom, especially with regional and mid-market players. Wholesale is maturing so many telecom companies may divert resources from Carrier Sales and focus more on cloud strategy.
  • What are new developments and initiatives that are exciting for your company in 2018?
    INDATEL has accomplished something new to help carriers serve clients in Rural America. We are providing an extensive on-net/near net building list that can be referenced (approx. 300,000 sites and growing); with flat rate pricing, nationwide. That's right! Flat Rate Nationwide priced Carrier Ethernet services. "700 Rural Independent Providers" being reached by "One (1) Agreement" with INDATEL. One partner to contact for billing, sales, support, service delivery. INDATEL is "the" carrier to contact when needing to serve clients in suburban and rural America.
  • What technologies or solutions are inhibiting growth today and how do you see innovation adapting to solve that problem?
    Software packages for Telecom (Customer Relationship Management, Building/Fiber Management, and Operational Support Systems) have come down in cost allowing smaller players the ability to invest in automation. With smaller providers automating, it will drive operational efficiency and provide valuable insights for better managerial decisions within those organizations.
  • Why is ITW such an important industry event for you and your company?
    This will be our first time attending ITW. We feel that the exposure and conversations could enhance our message with existing and potential partners. We have invested in automation to simplify our customer experience and improve transparency. It is a great way for us to check the pulse and gain insight into existing and potential client's perspectives, helping shape how we do business. A company like ours can scale or pivot to meet the demands of an ever-changing marketplace. It is important for carriers to know who we are and how we help

Justin Forte is Vice-President of Sales at Indatel with a track record of providing sales leadership in both the telecom and the software industry for the largest telecoms as well as start-ups. Justin can be contacted at justin.forte@indatel.com.