Considering a BSS/OSS Transformation?
BSS/OSS transformations are usually driven by business-oriented departments rather than the IT-oriented ones, however, IT transformations remain an important part of organizational transformations.
Providing the right level of traditional telecom services as well as entering new areas such as integrating IT systems or providing applications from the Cloud can be very challenging for TSPs, often faced with silo organization and architectures. This is why a transformation often requires substantial changes in the organizational structures, as well as redesigning IT architectures that support that area of telecom businesses.
Here are a few key points to consider:
Cautiously Define the Approach
Now, let’s say your company has made a decision to transform the existing OSS/BSS Architecture. The business customer segment needs some serious work and therefore you need to see how your IT is able to support it and see which systems need some tuning or even replacing, perhaps?
So here are some key questions your company needs to know the answers to, before you even choose your vendor:
- What delivery models to offer your business customers? Standard? As a service? From a Cloud? More?
- Do you need to have one international offer, same for all customers regardless of location, or do you want to offer different product plans in each country served?
- How important is it for your customers to get a simplified, “single service” experience, such as: single point of contact, single bill, single self-care and analytical tools for all types of telecom and non-telecom services?
These are just some examples that paint the complexity of such an endeavor.
Focus on Partner Involvement
Once your company decides that changes in the IT architecture are necessary, you will need to find a partner for the project.
Now here’s some advice for this part – forget about a typical vendor-customer relationship, where you say what you need and the IT vendor does all of that without asking any questions. Find a business partner that will understand your position, your pros and cons regarding the desired changes and one that exactly understands the way forward for your business.
Make sure the vendor gets involved in the change management processes just as much as you do, and that the selected company has perfect understanding of all business and technical levels of the organization that are involved in the project. Make sure you go with a company that is able to react quickly when something goes wrong (and make sure to say when it does) and that escalation paths for such situations are predefined.
Involvement of such a business partner may well be needed far before the IT project starts.
Achieve the Transformation
One of the most important lessons is to manage transformations in the context of end-to-end processes.
Ready-made (or COTS as we like to call it) products delivered by some vendors are for the most part just elements of such processes. This poses a risk, that there will be a lot of specifications for you to prepare regarding the IT requirements. And once the organizational changes start, you may simply not be able to go so much into detail of your requirements. You cannot be 100% sure that your system vendor will be able to fill all the gaps with standard processes and elements of processes. The result of such a potential project is then easy to foresee.
This is why it is better to manage the project (the analysis, the delivery, the tests etc.) in the context of well-defined end-to-end processes such as Order-to-Payment, Request-to-Answer, Complaint-to-Solution and a whole lot more.
Following this rule for your B2B transformation will make sure you never face the unfortunate situation where the entire system works and passes all tests but somehow the end-to-end processes don’t work properly.
When it comes to your project methodology, think twice. Agile is trendy. But it is probably not the best methodology for a big transformation project.
Prepare the Operations and Delivery Team
Depending on the strategy defined in point 1, your operations and delivery teams should receive new roles. Traditionally some of these roles may have been played by your business partners in the past.
Your operations and delivery processes must be set to Managed Services (both in the context of telecom and non-telecom services) instead of just Delivering Services like in the past.
Benefits of OSS/BSS Transformations
- Significant TCO optimization (40% or more)
- Achieve pro-active and interactive customer experience management (moving from reports and workflows to automated trouble-to-resolution, order-to-cash and real-time analytics)
- 60-90% improvement of time to market thanks to the automation of service fulfillment processes
- Cost cutting achieved through process consolidation (e.g. global NOCs and SOCs) and the automation of root cause analysis and network and service problems resolution (by 98%)
- Enabling new digital services (Unified Communication and Collaboration, Telecom Cloud, M2M, Mobile Authorization and Payments) over integrated connectivity platforms
- Consolidation of silo-based offers and services – especially valuable for the business customer segment, as it ensures a one service view in a world of multi-channel customer interactions and one user portal
IT managers and transformation partners (IT vendors/integrators) must deliver an integrated solution within a predictable budget and timeframe. It is also crucial that the rigid rules of traditional IT delivery contracts are switched to agile methodologies and collaboration on both technical and business levels is adhered to. As a software vendor and a business partner for global telecoms we understand the nature and complexity of telecom transformation projects. Based on our experience we have developed a complete offer of products and services to support local and multi-country transformation projects in OSS and BSS domains.