Let’s start with the last one first – DBA.
In the context of OSS/BSS, DBA has multiple meanings but I think the most relevant is Death By Acronym (don’t worry all you Database Administrators out there, I haven’t forgotten about you). Our industry is awash with TLAs (Three-Letter Acronyms) that lead to DBA.
Having said that, today’s article is about six that are commonly used in relation to end to end workflows through our OSS/BSS stacks. They often traverse different products, possibly even multiple different vendors’ products. They are as follows:
- P2O – Prospect to Order – This workflow operates across the boundary between the customer and the customer-facing staff at the service provider, particularly salespeople. It allows staff to generate and sustain sales as well as checking what products can be offered to a customer. This includes service qualification (SQ), feasibility checks, then design, assign and reserve resources.
- O2A – Order to Activate – This workflow includes all activities to manage customer services across entire life-cycles – from when the customer places the order, to when they start utilising the service/s. That is, not just the initial activation of a service, but in-flight changes during activation and post-activation changes as well (see more here)
- U2C – Usage to Cash – This workflow allows customers or staff to evaluate the usage or consumption (or credits remaining) of a service (or services) that has already been activated for a customer
- T2R – Trouble to Resolve – This “workflow” is more like a bundle of workflows that relate to assuring health of the services (and the network that carries them). They can be categorised as reactive (ie a customer triggers a resolution workflow by flagging an issue to the service provider) or a proactive (ie the service provider identifies and issue, degradation or potential for issue and triggers a resolution workflow internally). (see more here)
- CPQ – Configure, Price, Quote – This “workflow” or tool allows an organisation to efficiently, accurately and consistently generate offers / proposals to customers. Offers may need to incorporate specific customisations or designs as well as calculating quantities, rates, discounts, product features and more. CPQ is a sub-set of Q2C that follows (see more on CPQ here)
- Q2C – Quote to Cash – Starts with lead / opportunity management, goes through the CPQ steps above, but then also includes order fulfilment and billing / invoicing (see more here)
TM Forum has produced GB921E (Addendum E to its eTOM framework) to help define some of the end-to-end process flows used by telcos. These include:
- Customer-Centric Flows:
- Request to Answer (R2A)
- Order to Payment (O2P)
- Usage to Payment (U2P)
- Request to Change (R2C)
- Termination to Confirmation (T2C)
- Complaint to Solution (C2S)
- Network-Centric Flows:
- Order to Acceptance
- Ticket to Solution
- Activation to Usage
- Capacity Management
- Service Lifecycle Management
- Resource Lifecycle Management
- Product Flows:
- Idea to Business Plan
- Idea to Business Proposal
- Business Proposal to Launch
- Assessment to Relaunch
- Assessment to Retirement
- Market Strategy to Campaign
- Engaged Party Flows:
- Procurement Using Engaged Party
If you’re interested in seeing how these workflows relate to the TM Forum APIs and specifically to NaaS (Network as a Service) designs, there’s a great document (TMF 909A v1.5) that can be found at the provided link. It shows the sub-elements (and associated APIs) that each of these workflows rely on. However, also note that this comes from an outdated version of the Open API suite for NaaS. Version 3 can be found here.
PS. I recently read a vendor document that described additional flows:- I2I (Idea to Implementation – service onboarding, through a catalog presumably), P2P (Plan to Production – resource provisioning) and O2S (Order to Service). There’s also C2M (Concept to Market), L2C (Lead to Cash), O2C (Order to Cash) and I’m sure I’m forgetting a number of others. Are there any additional TLAs that I should be listing here to describe end-to-end workflows?
Follow this link for further information on how to Design Telecommunication Business Process Flows Using eTOM. In addition, if you wish to document, benchmark and optimise operational processes, we can assist. Our approach uses activity logs from your OSS/BSS to help capture current-state process flows in BPMN format (see sample below) and identify optimsation / automation opportunities.