In the world of telecommunications, rolling out, maintaining, and upgrading network infrastructure often requires major capital investment. But while revenue per user decreases in many regions, communication service providers (CSPs) are required to keep pace with rapidly evolving technologies, which is why it is essential for CSPs to have a comprehensive, efficient, and seamless roll-out strategy.
What are some of the biggest challenges the telecommunications industry is likely to face when managing network rollouts and upgrades? And how can the right vendor partnership with a telecom solution provider take the pain out of the process?
Handling the Management and Upgrade of Legacy Networks
Many telecom companies find it challenging to replace their legacy systems. As a result, they are often reluctant to make any changes. Some of these systems continue to serve a company's business model, but many service providers are unsure of how to overhaul their systems, as the engineers who built them have moved on.
Due to this, service providers often lack a clear view of the inventory of their systems—current as well as legacy—deployed in their enterprise. To maintain efficiency and service quality, physical and logical inventory data must also be synchronized across data and business processes. Cyient’s SyncTool inventory solution tackles this problem using three steps:
- Model physical and logical network resources using industry best practices and templates
- Migrate and transform legacy data into a connected, centralized inventory information model to avoid loss of legacy service provisioning data
- Integrate physical and logical inventory, supplemented by latest discovered and reconciled network information
These steps allow the CSP to engage in an ongoing program of predictive maintenance. This helps prevent expensive emergency site visits and improves customer satisfaction driven by reduced outages and better SL compliance.
Implementing Enterprise-wide Visibility and Operational Analytics
CSPs typically have the task of managing complex, large-scale, multi-vendor infrastructures. These often include legacy management platforms and data sources that remain unintegrated.
In these environments, it is still common practice to extract and compare network data across multiple excel spreadsheets. This becomes increasingly inefficient and prone to errors as fragmented patchworks of isolated tools are added to handle new service launches.
When undertaking major network planning and design programs, considerable technical and change management skills are necessary to prevent major service-level disruptions, and the negative publicity that can result from it.
CSPs can enhance visibility into their IT and network services using a tool like Cyient’s SmartView that provides enterprise-wide "single pane" visualization across all operation support system (OSS) applications. This makes it easier to monitor and transform diverse data into actionable insights and derive tangible business value from it. Designed using an ITIL-based approach, the Cyient SmartView can improve average service availability by over 60%, and reduce mean time to repair (MTTR) by approximately 50%.
Gartner estimates that in 2017, 15% of enterprises will use IT operational analytics (ITOA) to enhance their predictive maintenance and troubleshooting. It requires being able to leverage all the big data—logs, events, tickets, and more—within your organization. Cloud-hosted analytics platforms such as IBM Watson can help identify both normal and anomalous data patterns.
Comparing Regional Rollouts: U.S. and Europe
Also important is the country or region where the IT rollout or upgrade is taking place. Although it is easy to assume that the U.S. and European regions face similar constraints and challenges, there are several key differences, including:
- Population density: This is higher in Europe than the U.S., where population density is almost a quarter of Germany’s. This can create challenges in delivering reliable, high-speed networks to all customers
- Languages: European customers, contractors, and partners may need to be competent in multiple languages and available across different time zones
- Bandwidth: Broadband connectivity is often cheaper in Europe due to pricing restrictions, but average peak data speeds lag behind the U.S.
- Data security: Europe has strict rules for data privacy, as factored in the EU Charter
CSPs must be able to harness technologies that satisfy new demands for fixed and wireless networks. To stay competitive, many are partnering with a telecom solution provider who can offer the framework and tools to help them efficiently plan, build, and deliver next-generation services to their customers.
Contact Cyient today to find out how our engineers can help you manage your next major rollout.