Posted: December 9th, 2013 | Author: Leila Heijola | Filed under: Events, News | Tags: Alcatel-Lucent, Australia, FinPro, fulfillment, IBM, New Zealand, OSS/BSS, telecoms | No Comments »
Following our successful trips to India, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia, Comptel traveled with the Finpro delegation to visit Australia and New Zealand between 28 November and 3 December. The team was led by Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade Alexander Stubb and brought together representatives from Finnish companies such as Capricode, Doofor, Konecranes, Martin Bencher, Nuovo Nordic, Outotec and Snellman.
View from IBM Sydney office towards the Harbour Bridge
The purpose of the visit was to build strong relationships between Finland and these APAC countries, fostering business partnerships and working on international policies. Comptel has a strong customer base both in Australia and New Zealand, and the mobile market in both countries is growing rapidly. Research shows that the New Zealand telecoms market is set to grow to NZ$5.35 billion next year. In Australia, nearly half of Australians are now accessing the Internet by mobile phone.
We’ve played a key role in national broadband programmes with NBNCo in Australia and with Chorus in New Zealand. This recent trip has led to great opportunities, as Alexander Stubb joined Comptel’s Juhani Hintikka and Jussi Ware at customer meetings with NBNCo, Vodafone New Zealand and meetings with partners Alcaltel Lucent and IBM. As always, we were grateful for the chance to represent Finland on this latest Finpro trip, and we’re excited to see what opportunities await for us around the globe in the future.
Posted: December 3rd, 2013 | Author: Juho Paasonen | Filed under: Industry Insights, Uncategorized | Tags: Abraham Lincoln, Experience Design, OSS, Strategic Experience Design, UI, User Interface, UX | No Comments »
There once was a sharp-dressing American gentleman named Abraham Lincoln. He was a great man by many standards, and there’s also a brilliant quote from him I always use as the first slide of all of my presentations and lectures: “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”
I think Honest Abe was spot on – why wait for the world to change, when you can just roll up your sleeves and get the wheels turning? At Comptel, we’ve adopted Abe’s wise words as our unofficial slogan in our mission to drive a meaningful, usable, and delightful user journey for customers across all of our products.
Good user experience doesn’t happen by accident. It’s rooted much, much, deeper than just the graphical user interface. These are self-evident fundamentals that the likes of Jony Ive from Apple have made very visible in the consumer product space over the past decade, but strangely are still not widely adopted in professional software markets. The simple fact of the matter is that in a domain as business-critical and complex as OSS, putting proper weight on your user experience – instead of just the user interface – is even more important than with consumer products.
To that end, Comptel is dedicated to making a dent in our industry through strategic experience design. For us, user experience is not an obligatory final touch at the end of the R&D pipeline, it’s a driving force that runs deep throughout the organisation – from Product Managers, UX Designers, and Development teams, who work together to lay the basic bricks for the user journey, all the way to sales and service teams. We are all responsible for contributing to the overall user and customer experience in our daily work.
In the coming months, we’ll share more on the importance user and customer experience and offer further insight on today’s design trends. You will have the chance to get to know Comptel’s creative process, as well as our research methods and the design tools that we’re using to redefine experience design as we know it.
This is most definitely not a monologue, so we would love to hear your thoughts on the current stage of experience design in the OSS space. Please take this opening piece as an invitation to an honest dialogue, whether in the comments section below, on Twitter (https://twitter.com/ediootti), or over a very real cup of coffee in a face-to-face conversations!
Juho Paasonen is Head of Experience Design at Comptel
Posted: November 27th, 2013 | Author: Leila Heijola | Filed under: Around the World | Tags: analytics, big data, mobile, OTT, Smartphones, telecommunications | No Comments »
It’s the time of year when businesses in every industry are starting to think about what lies ahead. For the telecommunications industry, the past few years have been rocked by change in both consumer habits and technology… and 2014 looks like it won’t be any different.
From debates about national regulations to the increasing influence of OTT providers on the mobile landscape, next year is sure to be a decisive one for many communications service providers. That’s why Comptel decided to take a look at some of the most important developments for telcos and put them together on one page.
Here are five mobile trends for telcos to watch in 2014:
Want to learn more about what’s on the minds of telecommunications providers? Download our full Comptel User Group APAC Survey findings about Big Data, fulfillment and more.
Download the Full Survey
Posted: November 22nd, 2013 | Author: Kari Jokela | Filed under: Around the World, Telecom Trends | Tags: 4G, LTE, Media, OTT, social media | No Comments »
Most analysts agree that widespread 4G deployment is right around the corner in Taiwan. The nation has always been a prominent mobile player in the telecommunications market, especially with initiatives like the Mobile Taiwan program, which have emphasized wireless access for all Taiwanese citizens, whether they’re in New Taipei City or a village in the mountains.
According to 4G360, the region’s communications service providers (CSPs) are looking to enter the 4G market early next year. With the infrastructure in place, this could open a world of new opportunities, especially considering the sheer amount of data being exchanged across networks in Taiwan already.
One new study from InMobi highlights this phenomenon in detail. The research shows that, on average, mobile users in Taiwan spend six hours consuming media each day. More than a quarter (27 percent) of that time is spent on a mobile device, making it the number two channel for media consumption after desktops and laptops and actually placing it ahead of television. And even when they are watching TV, 20 percent of Taiwanese users surveyed said they look at their mobile phones at the same time.
So what does this all mean for CSPs in Taiwan? Mostly, it shows that it’s time to look at their customer relationships in a whole new way.
An Exponential Experience
Recently, Digitimes asked the three largest CSPs in Taiwan, Chunghwa Telecom (CHT), Taiwan Mobile (TWM) and Far EasTone (FET), about their thoughts on the future – especially when it comes to 4G. The consensus was that competition would be stiff. When it comes to 4G, CSPs won’t just be battling for market share with traditional operators, there will be an intensifying contest between CSPs and OTT providers like Google, Facebook and the services available from the iTunes App Store.
“Unlike 3G, which is positioned mainly as an access [point] to the Internet, telecom operators have to think of 4G as a platform to provide various application services,” said FET President Yvonne Li. “In this respect, FET stresses establishment of close cooperation [and] relation[ships] with subscribers.”
She added that, in the competition against OTT providers, CSPs won’t win in the race to build the best product or technology. Instead, they should strive for superior subscriber relationships and retail channels.
Improving subscriber relationships means paying closer attention to what customers want and need from CSPs. As VP of Research Monica Zlotogorski recently wrote on Telesperience, that hasn’t historically been the strongest point for telecom operators.
FET has taken strides to improve the customer experience already, investing in technology that allows for more intelligent mediation, charging and fulfillment.
More Media, More Problems
The revelations about Taiwanese mobile media usage should strike a chord among CSPs. Usually, telcos are seen as obstacles to getting the media the user wants – whether the connection is slow, there’s a limit on a data plan, or Wi-Fi is hard to find.
A lot of this has started to change within the past few years because of Big Data analytics tools, which can segment customers by mobile usage and allow CSPs to customise different marketing offers and networks accordingly. As 4G becomes widespread and media becomes even more accessible than before, optimising the customer experience will be a crucial strategy for telcos that are looking to stay ahead of OTT providers. By becoming a strategic and intelligent service enabler, CSPs can become an active and integral proponent of a customers’ needs, making sure the journey is as smooth as possible, from start to finish.
Posted: November 14th, 2013 | Author: Leila Heijola | Filed under: Around the World, Events | Tags: broadband, FinPro, FTTx, Middle East, Saudi Arabia | No Comments »
Last week, Comptel accompanied Finpro on a trip to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. CEO Juhani Hintikka and country director Teo-Tuomas Hirvonen took part in the delegation, which was again led by Minister of Economic Affairs Jan Vapaavuori and consisted of executives and employees from 17 other Finnish companies. The trip included meetings with government officials and business sessions related to not just information and communications technology (ICT) but also education, energy efficiency and medical care.
Comptel has joined a number of Finpro trips in recent months; most recently, our team travelled to Indonesia. We welcomed the opportunity to participate in this particular delegation, as we already have a strong presence in Saudi Arabia. Comptel has built long-term business relationships with several communications service providers (CSPs) – including market leader Saudi Telecom Company (STC).
Comptel had many interesting discussions about the future of the industry during our business meetings. The country’s population of nearly 30 million has an extremely high mobile penetration of 176 percent, and about 60 to 70 percent are under the age of 30. That’s opened up significant service innovation and revenue opportunities for Saudi CSPs – but it’s come with its fair share of challenges, too. As the mobile market continues to mature, and as demand for connectivity continues to increase, operators must look to improve its approaches to customer experience and service quality management in order to effectively differentiate from competitors and grow their businesses. According the Saudi Arabian Communications and Information Technology Commission, the substantial growth potential is in the increased demand for broadband services, especially for the fibre-optic network (FTTx) services.
Comptel was glad to have the opportunity to visit Saudi Arabia with Finpro – and looks forward to embarking on future trips to further build our relationships with CSPs and their local economies.
Posted: November 12th, 2013 | Author: OSS Team | Filed under: Around the World | Tags: 4G, analytics, Around the World, Big Dat analytics, big data, CEM, LTE | No Comments »
This week, there were a number of new insights across the telco industry. At Comptel, we’ve been keeping track of the ones that have really caught our eye. Here are three interesting articles that have come out recently:
LTE Investment Key to African Connectivity
A panel of experts was asked by West Indian Ocean Cable Company (WIOCC) how they would invest $100 million to improve Internet access in Africa, where connectivity is currently at the lowest rate in the world. Developing Telecoms’ editor James Barton believes that installing new 4G/LTE networks would create the best return on investment. He added that once people in Africa start accessing next-generation mobile networks, new competitive markets can open and, in turn, make Internet access more affordable.
Earlier this year, we wrote about the upcoming boom in mobile devices in Africa. By 2016, it is forecast that there will be more than one billion phones across the continent. The $100 million investment proposed by WIOCC may be hypothetical right now, but the need for 4G/LTE in the continent is a reality.
Information Management …
Big Data and Analytics Help Business Transform and Gain Competitive Advantage
Communications service providers (CSPs) are turning to Big Data analytics tools to cope with the constant changes in technology and consumer behavior. Through the use of these solutions, they can better adapt to new customer trends and prevent churn. CSPs, in particular, deal with a heavy amount of data, because of the high volume of calls, texts and data usage traveling across their networks each day. All of that information can be harnessed to create more targeted marketing offers, support better business planning and drive innovative infrastructure deployments.
Ulla Koivukoski argues that Big Data could potentially bridge silos across an organisation, too. By working with CTOs and CIOs, CMOs can create personalised campaigns by drawing contextual intelligence out of the network, customer and other data available to them. Consequently, silos can be overcome, and CSP executives can work toward the common goal of enhancing the customer experience.
Billing & OSS World…
CSPs, Other Businesses Aren’t Adapting to Customers
A recent study by Ovum found that 90 percent of CSPs and other businesses are at risk of being irrelevant to their customers in the near future. Because of organisational silos and slow decision cycles, dynamic customer responsiveness is lacking. The findings show the need to create a fluid customer process that ensures each individual receives personalised attention in a timely manner. Building relationships with customers and earning their trust can help organisations remain relevant, and increase overall customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Posted: November 8th, 2013 | Author: Steve Hateley | Filed under: Events | Tags: cloud, CRM, Dreamforce, fulfillment, order management, Salesforce.com, Service order management, Service Order Validation | No Comments »
Comptel will be attending the Dreamforce 2013 event in San Francisco November 18 to 21. Dreamforce, the biggest cloud computing event of the year, will take place at the Moscone Center and multiple other venues across San Francisco. In 2012 this annual event brought together over 90,000 Salesforce.com users, developers and partners. For this year organisers are expecting to have over 100,000 registered Salesforce.com stakeholders to connect, collaborate, and inspire.
The 11th Dreamforce event is hosted by salesforce.com, the company behind the successful cloud-based CRM system and application platform. The Dreamforce event has over 1,250 breakout sessions. Each industry theme features breakout sessions in a variety of formats and levels, giving attendees a chance to meet with Salesforce.com product teams, learn from expert users and partners at leading companies, and pick up new ideas and ways of working.
There will be a Communications Industry Partner Pavilion next to the Communications Track Session Room with a number of salesforce.com software and consulting partners that focus on Communications. Comptel will be exhibiting at the Communications and Media Industries Day Pavilion at The Westin San Francisco Market Street on Tuesday 19th November, where we will be showcasing the cloud-hosted Comptel Service Order Validator application, available shortly. The application will leverage the cloud’s low TCO advantages to enrich the traditionally linear lead-to-activation process with sales process interaction, service validation and real-time awareness, provided by pre-integration with the Comptel Fulfillment platform.
If you are interested in scheduling a meeting with Comptel at Dreamforce, please contact us.
Posted: October 30th, 2013 | Author: Leila Heijola | Filed under: Events | Tags: emerging markets, FinPro, Indonesia, mediation | 1 Comment »
Last week, Comptel’s CEO Juhani Hintikka and vice president of Asia-Pacific Kari Jokela visited Indonesia as part of the FinPro business delegation to discuss future economic cooperation between Finland and Indonesia. A leader in FinPro, Comptel has previously visited India, Kazakhstan and Chile, among other countries, to meet and work with those regions’ local communications service providers (CSPs) and government officials.
Juhani Hintikka, Jan Vapaavuori - Minister of Economic Affairs and Kari Jokela
Comptel has been doing business in Indonesia for more than 10 years now, and we’re excited to continue to build relationships with those in the region. The Asia-Pacific telecommunications market has tripled in size since 2003 and added one billion new connections. By the end of 2013, experts expect there to be three billion connections total. Next year, Analysys Mason predicts that Indonesia will steadily move toward deploying 4G services.
To help CSPs in the region prepare for this wave of change, Comptel aims to offer new products and services through an extended range of local partners. For example, the company recently announced that it is working with local partner Lintas Teknologi to deliver Comptel Convergent Mediation to the second largest CSP in Indonesia, Indosat. By consolidating the mediation of its entire mobile product portfolio, the operator will be able to handle billions of transactions daily, while seamlessly scaling as its business grows.
As 2013 draws to a close and Comptel looks at a new year, we couldn’t be more excited to cultivate our relationships with CSPs throughout Indonesia and Asia-Pacific, and offer them new ways of doing business that help grow their revenues, streamline their operational processes and build customer loyalty.
Want to learn more about what the telco industry is thinking about in the APAC region? Download our APAC survey below!
Download the Full Survey
Posted: October 21st, 2013 | Author: Steve Hateley | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: analytics, APAC, big data, conference, CSPs, survey, Thailand | No Comments »
Comptel recently hosted a focus group in Bangkok, Thailand, with attendees from fourteen communications service providers (CSPs) across ten different APAC countries. A multitude of topics were covered during the sessions, but the main thing on everyone’s mind seemed to be Big Data and analytics.
We surveyed attendees in the weeks leading up to our event—and the results seemed to reflect the same trends. With twenty-five respondents, 79 percent of which came from the Southeast Asia region, we got a sense of the issues facing CSPs today. We asked what IT, marketing and R&D leaders were currently focusing on, and one way or the other, it always seemed to come back to Big Data and analytics.
Here’s what our survey revealed:
1. Nearly three-quarters of CSPs say Big Data and analytics will have a big impact on their organizations
Whether CSPs are trying to better target customers or increase operational efficiency, it’s understood that they could benefit from Big Data. Although 71 percent agreed that Big Data and analytics will have a significant effect on their businesses going forward, only 58 percent said that Big Data was being used effectively.
Many CSPs could be in the same place as other businesses – data is being collected, but not being properly leveraged. New systems, processes and strategies need to be considered to truly turn all of that information into intelligence and the right actions. Only 16 percent of CSPs said that they had begun a Big Data initiative.
2. Almost nine out of ten CSPs believe integrating IT with marketing results in richer customer engagement
As we’ve said before, the future of marketing is networks, and the future of networks is marketing. Marketing campaigns at CSPs are becoming increasingly dependent on analytics and the technology that IT controls. At the same time, there’s more pressure on IT to become aligned with the broader goals of the business.
By breaking through the silos between those teams, CSPs can radically improve customer service, increase efficiency, ensure smart operations and realise many other business benefits.
3. 54 percent of CSPs say that their organization is undergoing changes
The landscape for CSPs is shifting, so it’s no surprise that more than half of survey respondents said that their businesses were undergoing some kind of change. A third said that their organizations had launched LTE services, many within the past six months, while 46 percent said that they were in the process of consolidating their OSS/BSS systems.
The ongoing changes may signal a search for more efficiency. Just 58 percent of respondents said that their networks and operations were efficient. A third said that the processes were “somewhat” efficient, and 8 percent said they were “inefficient.”
The Promise of Big Data and Analytics
One way or another, these three trends showcase the need for CSPs to find the right platforms to streamline their operations and bring marketing and IT together to reach the next level. Big Data and analytics are the key to this kind of success, but only if all of the pieces are in place and effectively working together.
Download the Full Survey
Posted: October 18th, 2013 | Author: Malla Poikela | Filed under: Industry Insights | Tags: analytics, big data, Customer Experience Management, IBM, innovation | No Comments »
This post was written by Malla Poikela, senior product marketing manager and Leila Heijola, channel marketing manager
We recently went to IBM’s Smarter Business event, which took place on 10 October at Finlandia Hall. We learned more about the increasingly important role Big Data and analytics will play in the coming years for businesses. That’s a topic dear to our own hearts, too, as Comptel works hard to help communications service providers (CSPs) leverage all of the information at their fingertips, turn it into contextual intelligence, and improve their business decision-making and performance.
What did we learn at the IBM event? The highlights of the key notes included:
- 90% of data was created in the last two years
- 86% of leading organisations say customer experience is the top priority
- 81% of customers depend on social sites in their purchasing decisions
- 72% of business leaders say that cloud is important
In particular, Big Data driven by smartphones, devices/sensors and social media, and insights, predictive analytics, mobility, cloud and the customer experience played a central role in the event. We would like to share the key takeaways from the variety of customer, partner and IBM presentations and live product demos.
Analytics for All
The central theme of IBM’s Smarter Business 2013 was how Big Data offers a totally new spectrum of innovative ideas and opportunities. Analytics is at the core of every data effort, a pervasive answer for almost “all” business problems. The three major trends we identified at the event were:
1. Big Data will make a “segment of one” a reality. Part of optimising Big Data analytics is about achieving a new level of personalised marketing. Let’s call it “segment of one.” As the number of customer touch points continues to increase, the intelligence from each touch point can help master customer interactions across different channels.
In turn, this will allow marketers an extremely granular view of customer needs, allowing for true individualisation and customisation of solutions and interactions/engagement.
2. Visualisation. Advanced visualisation tools and dashboards for business intelligence and predictive analytics, also known as the “face” of analysis and insights, will help democratise data across an organisation. Where reams of numbers and solid data only legible to IT were once the norm, newer tools offer easy and intuitive interfaces that make data accessible to more stakeholders than before.
This will usher in new perspectives on how to leverage data accordingly, because everyone from the CMO and CIO/CTO to the sales team will be able to get involved.
3. Process Optimisation. With powerful analytics tools that can span different departments, businesses will be able to better gauge efficiencies and effectiveness. That will allow for a deeper understanding of essential business parameters, challenges and anomalies. By providing a comprehensive and holistic view of customers, business and technologies, an analytics dashboard will allow companies to create a clearer picture of what should be done in development, marketing, system optimisation and more.
The Needs of the Future
Maybe the best way to demystify predictive analytics is by presenting the business results that have been achieved with it. At IBM’s Smarter Business 2013, those results were described as “astronomical,” as the proper application of predictive analytics can significantly reduce churn and improve campaign success rates by exponential degrees. As the democratisation of data and devices continues, we can only expect to hear more of the same.
This was a very insightful and well organized event. We gained plenty of valuable information and are looking forward to visit IBM Smarter Business again next year.