Having joined the NTT family a decade or so ago, Elaine Riley joined the Cloud Communications division in 2017. And her career with us has certainly evolved impressively. Joining first as Global UC Marketing Manager, she then became Head of Marketing for Microsoft UCaaS. In her most recent move, Elaine became Global Microsoft Product Marketing Director in mid-2020.
Elaine works with our product teams to shape the services and solutions we offer. She also works with our Global Sales, Advanced Services and Marketing teams to ensure they are ready to take these offers to market. In addition, Elaine works closely with Microsoft to understand how its evolving products and features will better serve our clients.
We caught up with Elaine to ask her a few questions about her career and what drives her to be her best, every day at work.
What are the three main qualities a Global Product Marketing Director must have?
Excellent communication skills, teamwork, and the ability to listen to colleagues and clients alike.
In your video you explain that you regularly work with different groups of people throughout the business. Why is teamwork so important for you, and for us as a global company?
Markets vary. Taking the time to understand regional variations is critical to ensure our products and services are a good fit, regionally or globally. It’s so important that insights and successes are shared across regions so that every team has the opportunity to benefit.
Your university degree is in computer systems management and IT. You then went on study marketing. When did you realize that you wanted to work in this area?
I always knew I wanted to work in sales and marketing. But also to fully understand the offers and products that I would be promoting. Having thorough knowledge is empowering and beneficial when dealing with product teams, vendors, and colleagues. At the time, it was essential in a male-oriented industry to gain credibility.
Can you share with us the proudest moment you’ve had so far, working for the Cloud Communications division of NTT?
Without a doubt, the proudest moment for me and my team was when Microsoft awarded the Cloud Communications division as its ‘2019 Intelligent Communications Partner of the Year’. We were very early adopters of Microsoft Teams, and one of the first to market with integrated calling plans and complementary professional services solutions. This enabled organizations to transition to Teams right from the very beginning of the product launch.
On your LinkedIn profile you note that you’re still learning new things every day and that you feel empowered by this. Why is constantly improving your knowledge so important in your role?
Taking new products, offers, and services to market involves a constant learning cycle. I have to ensure I’m up to date with the latest technological capabilities, but also understand how our clients are using the technology for their specific needs.
Professionally and personally, what do you most want to accomplish?
An area I’m particularly passionate about is Accessibility and Inclusion. In particular, how the technology we promote – and all the tools and features they offer – can empower and enable everyone to be the best they can be. I have a hidden disability and I benefit from having a supportive employer and access to technology that supports me. My goal is to raise awareness around accessibility and inclusion and ultimately, work with vendors and end-users to keep learning and developing new technology to further enhance the endless possibilities.