Compounding carrier complexity

The challenge is that complexity is beguiling. Clever tricks and hacks can add to a company’s story and the benefit vs complexity trade off for each one can be well worth it. The problem comes over time when new tricks are added to the old ones to keep the story fresh. The complexity builds up all the time whilst the story only gets incrementally better because the older tricks are forgotten or not worth talking about any more.”
Nic Brisbourne

In yesterday’s blog, we spoke of how compounding complexity can be as damaging as compounding interest is positive.

In the graph below, replace the $ values on the Y-axis with a measure of complexity and you see the concept.
Compounding interest

The problem for telco operators is that they are so large, have so many products / bundles, have so many process variants and have so much legacy stuff, the complexity challenge for their OSS and BSS is overwhelming and only getting greater.

The bigger problem is that the telco industry is on the verge of massive change on so many levels that the current model for OSS is going to struggle to cope. But operational tools are the only mechanism via which disruptive technologies like cloud delivery, network virtualisation, escalating network security threats, Big Data, Machine Learning and Predictive Analytics, orchestration and automation, wireless sensor networks, IoT/ M2M, Self-organizing Networks (SON) and more can be viably implemented. My latest market research report, “The Changing Landscape of Operational Support Systems (OSS): Technologies, Solutions, and Organizational Impacts,” takes a closer look at these disruptors and the influence on / by OSS.

Ruthless simplification projects are an essential step to reduce the likelihood of being crushed under the weight of complexity in any big telco. Removing legacy services might alienate some customers but the downside risk of the alternative is significantly bigger.

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