Have you noticed that TM Forum’s eTOM seems to be used in common vernacular when people talk about mapping and/or comparing products. eTOM and TAM are both quite closely linked (you’ll notice the similarities in colour-banding between the two). However, eTOM is more of a standardized mapping of workflows, whereas TAM is more of a mapping of standardized product functionalities.
Since workflows follow a journey, often through multiple products (potentially even multiple vendors’s products), I personally don’t subscribe to eTOM being the best way of mapping product functionality / capability by vendor. To me, TAM is much more applicable for this purpose*. If you’re a service provider mapping your user journeys, then eTOM does seem the right fit. Do you agree? How do you best use these TM Forum toolkits?
* However, I do note that if the customers are talking eTOM (or any other terminology for that matter) then it’s best to move to their language / wavelength. In my experience, many customers don’t know much about either eTOM or TAM (using it as “inclusive” jargon), so you should be able to switch to their wavelength with just a few questions about what they really want to know in relation to a request for eTOM mapping.
Interestingly, the top level TAM mapping is not necessarily a great communication tool in its own right, but I find that with the right supporting dialogue it can tell a very powerful product comparison story.