Aaargh! Transformation

A need to differentiate products and services in the market is forcing greater specialisation. Specialist organisations that do one or two things well will naturally rely more on partnerships. At the same time, other companies have little time to both develop similar expertise internally and keep pace with technology-driven changes in their own industry or neighbouring industries they might be moving into. The confluence of these trends, accessing specialism at speed, necessitates more networks that straddle multiple industries.”
White paper from The Economist.

Have you ever noticed the phenomenon where large CSPs go through a major OSS transformation, then expend enormous day-to-day effort on maintenance over the next 5-10 years before then choosing to go through the next transformation?

It seems that we have to take massive bets every 5-10 years to overcome the problems that have arisen during the ensuing period. Everyone knows of the challenges, risks, costs and pain of doing a transformation so the decision to transform is never taken lightly. This means that the problems are so big that the CSP is willing to go through the pain to get to the promised rewards (which may or may not eventuate).

The challenge for us is to invent a model that allows for smaller bets and thus smaller, ongoing overhauls.

OSS are data capture, processing and insight engines. The smaller-bet model means:

  • Highly modularised tools
  • Openness that supports John Reilly’s value fabric of collaborative partnership models
  • Insights driven from data rather than being baked into the apps
  • Having a workflow engine that is adaptable to change so that
  • An analytics and learning engine can monitor the workflows n flight and look for efficiencies to feed back to all operators as
  • Training and decision support tools that are adapting to the discoveries of the analytics / learning engine
  • Web scaling to support smaller bets in hardware transformation / evolution
  • Service-driven processing models rather than inventory / capacity driven (especially in virtualised compute / network environments)
  • Have an omni-channel focus to data gathering and insight generation that is quickly evolvable


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2 thoughts on “Aaargh! Transformation

  1. Thanks for the insights/ideas.

    I’m curious – Have you heard much about smaller CSPs(Tier 2 &3s) performing OSS Transformations? Or is it still mainly the large CSPs that are taking the initiative to go through the 5-10 year transformations?

  2. Hi Cindy,

    Great question!

    This is harder to prepare a generalised answer for because some smaller CSPs have sophisticated solutions whilst at the other end of the scale some use comprehensive Excel spreadsheets to do many OSS functions.

    So for some, “the transformation” is to replace spreadsheets with off-the-shelf OSS solutions to meet their growing needs. For others, “the transformation” is similar to what was described in the original post, but at a smaller scale.

    Being generalstic though, each of the smaller CSPs I’ve assisted have tended to have agile approaches. This means they go through longer cycles between massive overhauls / replacements but with multiple smaller overhaul / replacement projects along the way.

    What has your experience indicated in this sector of the market Cindy?

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