The Critical Importance of UI/UX/CX Optimisation in OSS/BSS Solutions

In the highly competitive domain of Operational Support Systems (OSS) and Business Support Systems (BSS), standing out isn’t just about offering a comprehensive set of features. It’s about delivering an exceptional user interface (UI), user experience (UX), and customer experience (CX).

Despite this, it seems that the prioritisation of UI / UX / CX is appreciably overlooked by the OSS/BSS industry. As a result, I’d like to share a bunch of reasons why I believe optimising them is so crucial for OSS/BSS creators:

First Impressions Matter!!

A key challenge for OSS/BSS vendors is convincing network operators to choose their solutions. The selection process (eg EOI, RFI, RFP, etc) can be lengthy and complex. A well-designed UI can make a significant difference. Whether they like to admit it or not, in my experience buyers often do judge the OSS book by its cover – or the solution by its UI — a poorly designed or complex UI can lead to rejection as being outdated, even if the solution is actually modern and feature-rich but with poor visual appeal.

The adage “the confused mind says no” applies strongly here; clarity and appeal can eliminate hesitation and build confidence in the product.

In all of our projects helping OSS Buyers with their Vendor Selections, there’s been a common thread:

If the GUI looks like it’s 10-20 years old in its themes / layouts, there’s a perception (often unfounded), that the vendor hasn’t invested any R&D effort in their product in the last 10-20 years either.

Alternatively, the UI may have strong design / style but be constrained by the Frankenstein Effect, where the design was elegant initially but then more and more features have been constructed on top in a haphazard way, making it hard to navigate (UX).

Increasing OSS Conversion Rates

Put simply, to summarise the previous two points, an optimised UX/UI can directly impact conversion rates – both in terms of a carrier buying a vendor’s OSS, but also in terms of a carrier’s clients buying more telco services. Simplifying forms, clarifying messaging, and making navigation highly intuitive can reduce barriers to adoption. As a result, potential clients are more likely to complete their purchasing journey, leading to increased revenue growth.

Enhancing Operational Efficiency

Inefficient user experiences and complex interfaces lead to numerous operational challenges for telco carriers, such as:

  • Degraded delivery times
  • Higher error rates
  • Extended training periods

By streamlining UX/UI design, vendors can significantly enhance efficiency, reduce errors, and shorten training times. This translates into faster deployment and better utilisation of resources, providing a clear competitive edge. The smoothness (or clunkiness) of end-to-end workflows (UX / CX) as they are navigated in OSS/BSS vendor demos can rule a product in (or out) of a vendor selection process just as quickly as the visual appeal of a UI.

Boosting User Satisfaction

A seamless and intuitive user experience (UX) promotes higher engagement and satisfaction. Satisfied users are more likely to become advocates for the product, spreading positive word-of-mouth internally and externally as well as increasing overall adoption rates. Additionally, an engaging UX can improve employee morale, leading to better performance and reduced turnover. OSS projects are notoriously challenging from the perspective of organisational change management, so it’s important to have as many evangelists working on your behalf when challenges inevitably arise during transformation projects.

Ensuring UI Consistency and Professionalism

A consistent design across different sections of the solution fosters a cohesive and professional image. This consistency is vital in building trust with users, ensuring that the product feels reliable and well-crafted.

Enhancing Accessibility

Optimising UX/UI also involves ensuring that the solution is accessible to all users, including those with disabilities. Compliance with accessibility standards not only broadens the user base but also demonstrates a commitment to inclusivity, enhancing the company’s reputation.

Comprehensive UX/UI Audits

Before overhauling a design, conducting an impartial UX/UI audit is essential. PAOSS offers UX/UI audit services that help in:

  • Identifying usability issues
  • Pinpointing navigation challenges
  • Enhancing user satisfaction
  • Boosting conversion rates
  • Ensuring design consistency
  • Improving accessibility

Phased Approach to UI/UX Optimisation

PAOSS uses a 5-stage approach to performing UI/UX audits, recommendations and interventions, which includes:

  1. Discovery & Understanding: Evaluating user workflows to identify inefficiencies and opportunities using various techniques including workflow analysis, long-tail analysis, Friction Continuum assessement, heuristics assessment and accessibility evaluations
  2. User Experience Analysis: Involves a cognitive walkthrough to determine how easily a layperson can perform tasks using the OSS for the first time
  3. User Feedback & Data Analysis: Using real user feedback and data analysis to understand pain points.
  4. Comparative Evaluation & Strategy: Benchmarking against competitors to find gaps and opportunities.
  5. Targeted Interventions & Design: Implementing specific recommendations, possibly including design changes based on identified issues and using the double diamond technique

UI / UX Audit Conclusion

In the OSS/BSS industry, the journey to excellence and success is strongly influenced by having an optimised UI/UX/CX. A focus on these aspects can drive all-important conversion rates, customer satisfaction, operational efficiency and ultimately, market leadership. By embarking on this optimisation journey, OSS/BSS creators can unlock a distinct competitive advantage.

If you’d like to speak with us about a targetted UI/UX assessment and improvement program, please leave us a note via the form below:

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