BSS-OSS Personalisation Layer

It is common for us to receive an e-mail from a customer apologizing for not responding sooner because they thought our automated follow-up was being done manually. The key to a successful follow-up program is personalization and making it relevant for the customer.”
John Hopkins.

Why did Apple’s iPod revolutionise the music industry? Was it because of the technology of the iPod itself? Unlikely. There were certainly aspects of innovation such as creating a music store that allowed the downloading of music but it wasn’t the technology as such. The big difference between Apple’s solution and what the rest of the market was doing was that it built a fantastic business plan that focussed on the end-to-end customer experience. Secondly, the business plan was enabled by technology rather than being technology-driven.

The same can be said of B/OSS. Many of the technologies already exist, but they are very technology-driven. Our industry is just waiting to be taken to a whole other level through smarter enablement of the technologies.

In a commoditised world, which ICT is increasingly becoming, people will pay a premium for personalisation and top-notch customer service. Customer Experience (CX) is the true end-to-end performance indicator. With the diversity of B/OSS and the promulgation of core systems, the customer experience at many CSPs is disjointed because there is no single system that takes end-to-end responsibility. To use an analogy, it’s the system-level version of, “it isn’t us, it must be them” in a multi-vendor network fault situation.

B/OSS is at the heart of CSPs being able to offer highly personalised service. In theory it has access to all the data from all the different systems in their estate. Many a CSP is so big that it has many products across its global B/OSS suite and needs a whole new layer that oversees the customer experience.

The B/OSS Personalisation Layer requires careful planning of linking keys in every sub-system to correlate a single user. Having said that, the system still needs to work in cases where individual users can’t be identified.

The Personalisation Layer also relies upon ruthless simplification to limit the total number of variables across the entire estate or else the complexity of management outweighs the business benefits of personalisation. We’ll discuss this in more detail in tomorrow’s blog entry.

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