Monday, 20 May 2019

CEO Interview - Ultracomms

By Chris Kelly, Total Telecom
Wednesday 12 December 18

Ultracomms' CEO, Derwyn Jones, takes a look at the state of the global telecoms sector

Derwyn Jones fell into telecoms sales by accident – but since then, helping companies communicate with their customers has defined a 40-year career that took him from his South Wales roots to working with some of the world’s biggest business brands. Having spent his working life driving the telecommunications revolution, helping to lead the way in the widespread adoption of customer contact centres, the softly-spoken Welshman remains at the forefront of customer contact technology. His current role, as CEO of Portsmouth-based Ultracomms, sees him steer the firm as it continues to provide a -leading omni-channel contact platform while leading the charge against debit and credit card fraud with a new product called PaySure, an ultra-secure telephone payment system. It’s not a conventional career path, and one which he almost didn’t follow at all. “I took a fairly roundabout way to where I am today,” recalls Derwyn, who left school at 16 and was put through university on a BT apprenticeship scheme, training as a structural engineer, and then an architect. His first years at BT in the early 1980s, where he was involved in the building and modernising of the company’s vast exchanges, coincided with a period of rapid change. “At the time, BT were the second largest property owner in the UK, behind the Church, but with the advent of modern technology behind the exchanges they required far smaller spaces, so they were being sold off,” he remembers. “A lot of the work from an architectural point of view was just drying up.” At the same time, a newly-privatised BT was coming to terms with having competition in the market, employing salespeople for the first time. For a father-of-two who had relocated with his family to Brighton from South Wales because of the amount of architectural work in the south-east, this meant a career shift became necessary, “I often get asked what attracted me to sales,” he says, “but I don’t think I can honestly say at the time that I knew I would be a good salesperson. Actually, I didn&rsquo…

Derwyn Jones fell into telecoms sales by accident – but since then, helping companies communicate with their customers has defined a 40-year career that took him from his South Wales roots to working with some of the world’s biggest business brands. Having spent his working life driving the telecommunications revolution, helping to lead the way in the widespread adoption of customer contact centres, the softly-spoken Welshman remains at the forefront of customer contact technology. His current role, as CEO of Portsmouth-based Ultracomms, sees him steer the firm as it continues to provide a -leading omni-channel contact platform while leading the charge against debit and credit card fraud with a new product called PaySure, an ultra-secure telephone payment system. It’s not a conventional career path, and one which he almost didn’t follow at all. “I took a fairly roundabout way to where I am today,” recalls Derwyn, who left school at 16 and was put through university on a BT apprenticeship scheme, training as a structural engineer, and then an architect. His first years at BT in the early 1980s, where he was involved in the building and modernising of the company’s vast exchanges, coincided with a period of rapid change. “At the time, BT were the second largest property owner in the UK, behind the Church, but with the advent of modern technology behind the exchanges they required far smaller spaces, so they were being sold off,” he remembers. “A lot of the work from an architectural point of view was just drying up.” At the same time, a newly-privatised BT was coming to terms with having competition in the market, employing salespeople for the first time. For a father-of-two who had relocated with his family to Brighton from South Wales because of the amount of architectural work in the south-east, this meant a career shift became necessary, “I often get asked what attracted me to sales,” he says, “but I don’t think I can honestly say at the time that I knew I would be a good salesperson. Actually, I didn&rsquo…

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