5G and related technologies are transforming the telco organization as we know it.
Coupled with the entry into the Coordination Age, these technologies are enabling operators to take a new role with their customers, provide a suite of services beyond core connectivity, and find renewed opportunities for growth.
This extensive interview program, conducted with global operators, aims to understand the underlying capabilities and processes CSPs need to have in place as they pursue the new telco vision.
Becoming “5G ready”
We have identified 6 key complexities that telcos will tackle in their pursuit of becoming “5G-ready” as well as 6 key recommendations on how operators can overcome these complexities:
- Portfolio diversity and simplification
Operators are not only expanding their portfolio of offerings by introducing more products and services beyond core connectivity, but they are also delivering these services in a more dynamic and flexible way. In other words, customers strive for simplicity and ease of use. Hence, the problem that operators need to solve is how to navigate the growing complexity of the operator portfolio with the need to deliver a frictionless user experience.
- Partner management across complex B2B2X ecosystems
5G is prompting operators to move towards a platform or ecosystem approach of serving the market and away from a highly vertically integrated model. As a result, some telcos will try to play in more complex B2B2X ecosystems where each partner may have different billing, data capture & storage, customer management and other models. It has become clear from our research that most telcos lack the capabilities necessary to effectively navigate these new environments and need to invest in building frameworks that can help them manage these complicated partner dynamics.
- Configurability: the need to manage bespoke services in a productized and automated way
The telco offering, enabled by the dynamic and cloud-native nature of 5G, is becoming increasingly more configurable and flexible. This is in line with customer demands for bespoke solutions tailored to individual customer needs and requirements. The complexity that telcos are facing is the need to productize and drive self-service in network/service configurability and develop effective monetization models for these bespoke solutions.
- The shift towards real-time and right-time billing, not end of cycle/manual processing
The days of getting your bill at the end of the month are over. Telcos need to evolve BSS processes to meet customer demands for a real-time picture of their data usage and costs, broken down by key cost centers, in an automated and self-service way.
- Variation in maturity of customers and adoption of new vision models
The telco customer base is heavily fragmented. In the consumer and enterprise space, there is a growing need to cater to digital native customers who want an end-to-end online or omnichannel experience: configuring their bundle, troubleshooting, and upgrading. Operators are therefore finding themselves having to maintain their legacy stack and existing services while creating a new digital stack and migrating customers across. The complexity lies in simultaneously operating two environments, transitioning towards an omnichannel IT/BSS system, and managing the migration of customers.
- Rating and charging for new, next generation network enabled, use cases (slicing, AR/VR)
5G and related technologies will enable a host of unique use cases such as network slicing, AR/VR in the field, precision monitoring and others. While it is still early days for most of these use cases, telcos need to start thinking about the effective monetization of these new capabilities. An essential component of meeting this challenge is developing rating and charging mechanisms that will be fit for purpose.