Operators now ‘more aggressive’ in offering new services to enterprises
“We saw a gap in the telecoms market in 2011.” Tanya Cheng of Huawei is talking exclusively to VanillaPlus in Shenzhen, China at the Huawei Analyst Summit 2016 (HAS2016).
“With the industry, including the TM Forum, focused on Service Quality Management (SQM) there were no solutions in the telecoms sector aimed directly at improving the customer experience,” maintains Huawei’s director of CEM Solution Marketing Operations, in the Service Strategy & Marketing Department.
So in 2012 the company began to act as a facilitator with analysts and industry groups, writes Jeremy Cowan. They were aiming to create a matrix of what software was needed, who within the network operators might want it, and where it should fit in network operations.
“From observing mobile broadband users and services we got a lot of operators asking how to handle complaints, especially from end users, and complaints about data service quality. They wanted to know how to handle customer complaint issues,” says Cheng. (Also see: How do I know if my customers are happy?)
Comparison with airline and hotel industries
“But we found it’s a big market. In other industries — insurance, hotel, airline — they have advanced methodologies. So we assessed best practice. We started from the operators’ requirements, then found that there was more and more we could do for them. We believed by word of mouth that communication service providers (CSPs) had greater opportunities in the enterprise market. They invested first in the consumer market because they have a great market share and most revenue came from there. Now some CSPs are more focused on enterprises,” she said.
Huawei now has 100 business contracts in CEM (customer experience management) globally. “We see operators trying more aggressively to offer new services in the enterprise market, such as IoT (Internet of Things). Before 2012 who offered CEM? Probe vendors? SQM (service quality management) vendors? Their capabilities were limited, monitoring typical parts of the network, and pre-2011 it wasn’t true CEM. Then three CT (communications technology) vendors announced CEM solutions. After 2011 supplier solutions were getting more and more mature. In 2012 many operators wanted integration; many had bought a lot of probes and they wanted us to take care of their legacies using their existing probes.”
What’s new in CEM?
“So what does your CEM solution do now?” VanillaPlus asked.
“Well, for example, the Network Departments bought probes for active monitoring of the network performance or service quality, for instance SMS. Nowadays the mainstream CEM solution providers can offer end-to-end data and traditional service quality monitoring, from voice to SMS or WeChat to WhatsApp. Now I can drill down and can give a troubleticket to the Wireless Optimisation team or the Core Network Optimisation team. It can demonstrate the end-to-end service quality and it can drill down to see which team or network element is responsible for that bad customer experience.
“In the past, only the Network or OSS teams were using probe solutions. But right now with our current customers the CIO and CMO (chief information and marketing officers) are jointly investing in CEM solutions. So the CEM solution might also support the customer service team, for example, to show a customer care agent if you (the customer) are suffering bad service before you call. And it shows the Customer Service Level One agent possible solutions for the customer”
That morning Cheng had arranged a workshop between one operator we can’t name and Ovum analysts. They showed the analysts a system for fast customer complaint handling. “Right now the CEM solution can support the Marketing Team to do more precision marketing and proactive churn reduction. The solution can use not only BSS (business support systems) data but also network data. This can provide the context of your customers’ behaviour. I know you as a customer, your history. You, the customer, may be dissatisfied with my service and it may cause you to churn; now I can give information to the Customer Retention team to keep you,” said Cheng.
“Operators are supposed to be migrating customers from 2G to 3G to 4G because of then assumption that 4G users will bring more value. But even if the customer already has the 3G or 4G contract, the network or device issue means they cannot move to 3G or 4G successfully. Our CEM solution can help operators to identify those customers successfully. We can help the marketing team to do more efficient customer migration from 2G to 3G and LTE,” said Cheng.
Cross-sell and up-sell
She continued that there is another scenario in upselling. “Many operators are acquiring fixed networks because they think that if they offer fixed and mobile bundles it will increase ‘stickiness’. So they invest heavily in marketing campaigns for mobile broadband, but it’s very hard for that investment to be paid back. They don’t know if their users are happy or not, and what kind of services they’re unhappy with. If you’re using my IPTV service and I offer to up-sell you, you may say no. The CEM solution can offer a customer experience index (CEI), allowing you to focus on the high CEI users first, creating a tailor-made marketing campaign for them. It will increase your upsell success rate. This is a key differentiator when we compare current to past CEM solutions.”
So now the CEM doesn’t only serve the network OSS team, it’s a cross-organisation solution. This software is a service-led solution – the software is just one part of Huawei’s solution. One part is Managed Services; if you have a NOC (network operations centre) and then you want to focus on the customer experience they can offer their SOC (service operations centre) to clients. “You sign a managed service contract with us and we will help you to build the CEM solution, to find and train the people, and to operate this service operations centre,” she said.
“The other part is Consulting and Systems Integration. Operators already buy a lot of CEM tools, but how can they use them better? You must do a Maturity Level Assessment on your organisation. Based on this we can find the key customer journeys, where you customer has a bad experience, and in which touchpoints you must improve the service quality. Based on these consulting services we can do the system integration, re-utilising your existing software, platforms, or processes. We offer professional services integration, consulting, optimisation, operation and we also offer a platform, the Service Experience Quality Analyst. It’s an open platform, we’re open to integrating third parties’ data, we can offer the API to them so that they can develop the applications by themselves.”
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