1 The Order Management Tipping Point: Why Salesforce is at the Center of the New Communication Service Provider Architecture Sponsored by
2 Technology Changing the Customer Change is constant for all industries, all markets and all people. Technology changes people's behavior, which in turn requires companies to change in order to meet the new needs better than the competition. This can be difficult to achieve, especially for large established businesses. However, the alternative to change is to accept continual decline. Communications Service Providers (CSPs) have perpetually been at the forefront of introducing the technology that fundamentally changes the landscape for people and businesses. The introduction of fixed telephony, mobile telephony, Internet access, fiber networks and smartphones did not evolve interactions and expectations, they revolutionized them. The ever more powerful smart devices, coupled with increasing access speeds provided by FTTx (Fiber To The anything) and LTE (Long Term Evolution), have led to a perfect storm which has enabled customer behavior to change faster and more radically than ever before. Technology changes behavior in a number of ways that affect companies, including service providers. People s spend moves, be it from retail stores to online or from voice calls to messaging apps. People s expected customer experience alters, how they want to interact and what they expect the experience to be. New Expectations for Communications Service Providers For communication service providers, there is an irony that they have provided the smartphones and tablets, backed by superfast internet speeds at home and on the move, which have undermined their approach as a business. These devices have removed the significant barriers to entry that existed in the communications market. Competition for consumer spend is fierce, and spend is bleeding into over the top (OTT) services. People are able to interact with other companies via the channel of their choosing, at any time, achieving their desired outcomes with minimal effort. For a long time the biggest drivers for customer retention were price, product availability and service reliability. Barriers to entry in the communications market meant that your performance was only comparative to a small number of competitors, which were able to offer the same service. Digital services have removed those restrictions and, as a result, the growth in supply has outstripped the growth in demand, providing the customer with unprecedented leverage.
3 Customers now expect frictionless Omnichannel customer experience every time, across every service, and Communications Service Providers were not setup to deliver this. To further complicate matters service providers are having to expand their product portfolios into new areas and save operational costs to offset the revenue and profit decline in traditional telecommunications services. These conflicting forces require a fundamental change in the people, processes and systems that define how service providers deliver their services and interact with customers. Customer interactions - Order Management at the Center For Communication Service Providers, order management is at the center of their most significant interactions with customers. Whether CSPs are marketing themselves to new prospects or promoting the latest products to customers, they are committing to a customer experience that starts with the sale. In an industry where commonality of technology leads to similar product performance, differentiation is required in other areas. It is the customer experience of critical interactions with CSPs that make a difference to customer satisfaction and churn. Outside of faults the most significant interactions a customer has are when they buy, move, add, change, cancel and are billed for services. With each interaction the customer expects the CSP to deliver a particular outcome in a certain time. The journey from the customer interaction to the delivery is where order management systems are used, placing them at the heart of the business. Previously the CSP approach to sales and order management has lacked cohesion. Systems have been siloed, not just between CRM, Sales, customer order management and service order management but also those systems for different products and services. This has led to a collection of unmanageable data and processes, many of which are manual. The impact is increased costs, order errors, longer provisioning cycles and a depreciating customer experience. CSPs have recognized the need to improve and where the changes are required, but are held back by their inflexible systems which require significant time and expense to change. Legacy OSS and BSS Constraints During the previous architecture refresh cycle many CSPs invested in a single vendor strategy for CRM, customer order management and service order management with the likes of Oracle and Amdocs. This provided economies of scale and single throat to choke whilst fulfilling their existing technology requirements. This single vendor approach required a compromise on
4 certain functions as a single vendor capability varies across their architecture with some systems best in class, whilst others lag behind and diminish overall performance. The suitability of CSPs existing systems has depreciated as the market has changed, with the CSP requirements changing accordingly. The change cycle for products, services and pricing is increasing at an unprecedented rate. The products CSPs are selling are increasingly diverse, moving away from traditional telecommunications services as those revenues mature and profits decline. This has led to unprecedented levels of product and order complexity that includes multiple sales channels, converged infrastructure, and virtual network and service configurations. With the Internet of Things (IoT), Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), Big Data and Software Defined Networks (SDN) some of the next mega trends due to take hold, these challenges will only increase for CSPs. Time is an increasingly precious commodity. The acceleration in the required change velocity has meant that the traditional multi-year projects to make large-scale changes and months to change pricing or offers are no longer sustainable. Customers have also lost patience. Due to the increasing proliferation of digital services which are instantly available once purchased there is little appetite for prolonged delivery times, especially where there is a lack of transparency on what is happening when. Customers expect to be able to self-serve information showing progress and expected completion times. Where issues arise they expect CSPs to inform them, rather than the customer themselves having to contact the CSP to ask what has happened. The future profitability of CSPs relies upon customers choosing them for new products that are available from non-csps. If they are unable to meet today s customer expectations the revenue and profit will go elsewhere. Single Vendor Shortcomings Continue The requirements for the new CSP architecture are evident but the route to achieving their goals is less so. The traditional vendors such as Oracle and Amdocs have evolved their systems to be able effectively equip CSPs for new products and new technologies. However, the cost of migration to the new generation of these solutions is significant both in terms of time and cash. The new generation single vendor offering also does not resolve a number of issues that existed in the previous generation from those vendors. Compromises are still required with some areas of their offering falling behind the best in class in the market. Change cycles are still too long with products taking many months, often over twelve, to get to market. Service costs for implementation, support, development and ongoing BAU changes are high, especially in the case of Amdocs, which provides the majority of services work themselves. This also
5 impacts the ease of change as CSPs are abstracted from their systems, unable to extract and migrate easily. The Order Management Tipping Point All dysfunctional markets reach a tipping point where the right answer provides the catalyst to exponential change. In the case of the CSP systems approach, that catalyst is the Software as a Service (SaaS) market leader Salesforce. Initially being adopted by the business for B2B sales and CRM before moving into Service and Marketing, Salesforce has put the power into the hands of the business user, providing an agile and responsive system. Much like technology has changed the expectations of the customer, Salesforce has changed the expectation of the CSP business user. Why are all CSP OSS and BSS systems not able to deliver to the Salesforce standard? Why should CSPs and their customers settle for the status quo? To date the barrier to CSPs moving to a Salesforce orientated architecture is down to the gap in functionality that they provide versus the deeper Oracle and Amdocs product sets. Salesforce leads the market in sales, service, marketing and CRM but do not provide customer order management or service order management. The result is that many CSPs have moved to a hybrid architecture where Salesforce is layered on top of existing systems and reliant on their performance to deliver the customer experience. With any transitional architecture, decisions must be made on what to retain in the existing architecture and where to prioritise investment. Often these decisions leave important BSS systems behind which limits business performance and agility. Product catalogs (BSS) and service catalogs (OSS) represent a common area where design decisions can lead to future constraints. The product catalog holds the commercial intelligence of what is sold to the customer, pricing contracts and offers. The service catalog holds the technical design of parameters and feature configurations that are used to specify products. It is important for these separate systems to be federated, providing a cohesive approach to customer order management and service order management. However, as CSPs move BSS systems to align to their Salesforce architecture some choose to leave behind the product catalog. This abstraction of the commercial intelligence of the business from the customer engagement and sales platform, direct and indirect, creates numerous issues. The speed and agility of bringing new products to market is reduced, and the 360 view of the customer is obscured by separating customer data from commercial data.
6 Salesforce Orientated Modular Architecture The opportunity for CSPs is to continue in their adoption of best in class systems, to create a modular architecture orientated towards Salesforce. Providing the CSP with agile and responsive systems that create a more nimble business, better aligned to delivering the experience that customers expect. The CSP business users in turn are given more control of changes and better transparency of customers throughout the marketing, buying, order, billing and service cycles. In order to ensure a best in class modular architecture each vendor needs to invest not just in their own product set but also in the standardized out of the box integration and working to guarantee that performance is seamless both in terms of implementation but also future working. Salesforce, CloudSense and Comptel Salesforce, CloudSense and Comptel have combined to provide CSPs with an agile and open platform, which can cost-effectively meet future needs for bundling and reliably delivering sophisticated digital and virtualized services. CSPs can differentiate customer experience and boost sales and operational efficiency with Salesforce (CRM and sales automation), CloudSense (multichannel sales and customer order management, native to Salesforce) and Comptel (service order management and fulfillment). With the out of the box integration between Salesforce, CloudSense and Comptel, CSPs will benefit from faster time to market, lower risk, greater ease of customization, a single view of the customer from end to end and delivery of robust customer experience. CSPs can now create a modular architecture of best in class systems orientated towards Salesforce, removing the constraints of their legacy architecture and delivering the required customer experience from lead to cash across every order.
7 As Salesforce is an open platform CSPs are able to easily integrate systems and consolidate legacy systems onto, reducing risk and complexity. With CloudSense and Comptel working seamlessly out of the box, CSPs for the first time can benefit from a simpler and leaner, hybrid cloud order management solution able to support sophisticated B2B enterprise services. The result is a comprehensive and easily customizable end to end hybrid cloud order management solution where business users can make changes, speeding up price and product changes, reducing the IT and Services overhead. The CloudSense product catalog lives natively on Salesforce and the Comptel service catalog publishes objects and attributes onto the Salesforce platform using the Comptel Service Order Validator. As a result commercial changes can be made quickly and easily. Technical information from Comptel service order management can be surfaced during the configuration pricing and quoting of products or services in CloudSense Configurator CPQ. Feasibility is checked and resources reserved during runtime, ensuring the quote can be fulfilled. The Salesforce, CloudSense and Comptel hybrid cloud design optimizes the architecture by federating customer focused and service focused systems. Costs are reduced operationally, due to increased automation and joined up processes across sales, customer order management and service order management. Additionally cost savings can be attributed to improvements around introducing new products to market. Using
8 CloudSense Telefonica UK benefited from launching new products in a third of the time and at a third of the cost. Cash flow is improved through the faster time to deliver purchased services, launch new products and a reduction in billing issues from Move, Adds, Changes and Deletions (MACDs). While revenue is increased through guided selling, combined with simple up-sell and cross-sell capability. Senior management can view in a single place pipeline, proposed quotes, accepted quotes, revenue and customer service information. This 360 view of the customer enables more informed decisions and quick response to identified trends. Seizing the Initiative The biggest winner is the customer, who is at the epicenter of the change. Customers benefit from a greater choice of products and channels, quicker delivery of services, more immediate changes and fewer errors. As a result, order value is increased, churn reduced and profit maximized. For CSPs, the tipping point has been reached for Order Management. Legacy systems are no longer viable due to cost and time constraints. Customer requirements have changed, and a new breed of systems are enabling CSPs to transition to a modular hybrid cloud architecture, realizing the benefits of Salesforce combined with a cohesive customer order management and service order management journey. As with any shift there will be early adopters and late adopters. As with any race the first to arrive will seize the initiative.
9 Since 1986, Comptel has helped more than 290 service providers across 87 countries meet over one billion subscribers communications and infotainment needs. Comptel s solutions are built on an Event Analysis Action strategic framework that leverages the company s strengths in collecting and analysing Big Data and turning intelligence into opportunities in real time. Comptel s service fulfillment, mediation, charging and policy control, and advanced predictive analytics products with implementation and professional services enable service providers to automate customer interactions and other business decisions, to create revenue, reduce costs and lessen churn. CloudSense is an international provider of cloud software and services. We are a Salesforce Platinum Partner.Our platforms provide next generation Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ), Order Management and beyond natively on Salesforce. CloudSense is also a full-services consulting firm specialising in helping customers get the best possible results from Salesforce and related applications. As a Salesforce Platinum partner we have helped companies across 26 countries and have a market leading 9.5/10 customer satisfaction.
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