You guys are too much. You have such good questions to ask. So, what do I see as the most important criteria carriers use when selecting their interconnect voice OSS & BSS Solution? Well, first let’s acknowledge that the priority of criteria is tied to some attributes like size or type of carrier.
A small niche retail carrier might have different priorities (cost, quality management, and ease of use), compared to the priorities of a large pure play wholesaler (speed, scale, reliability and feature functionality).
So, with that in mind, here’s what I see:
For the smaller, niche carriers, we see a greater emphasis on the actual price of the solution, which is obviously not ideal for them or the vendor. Such an emphasis on cost of the OSS & BSS solution eliminates the value of the particular solution. As we have repeated here, numerous times, the days of an “LCR” solution are long gone. These solutions are complex, enterprise platforms that manage important parts of a carrier’s business. Carriers need to stop trying to simplify them to a simple price point and assume they are all the same. They are not. Let me say that again...
The solutions are not all the same.
The interconnect voice industry is commoditized, but the platforms that help manage it are NOT. So, while one can certainly understand a carrier’s desire to focus on the cost of the solution, it really does them a disservice. Regardless of your size, ROI should be the key metric to consider. That’s the job of every management team, every owner. Maximize the return on investment. Your interconnect voice OSS & BSS solution is critical to the success of that business. Make the decision based on ROI, not cost.
For larger carriers, they don’t usually look at ROI either. They tend to focus on not doing anything. Why? Because change is hard and painful, and who wants to do that? So, usually the larger carriers focus on learning what is new and cool in the industry and then trying to press their existing providers to modify the solution to do that. The problem here is obvious. If the existing vendor wasn’t already doing it, or planning on doing it, then carriers are trying to drive their product development roadmap. Never a good situation.
So, there you have it. We see carriers prioritize cost, and keeping their existing vendors, as their primary criteria. Wacky, right? I know. It’s depressing sometimes because we can see the benefits they are foregoing by focusing on that. Cheaper is rarely better. And if your existing vendor isn’t doing something that’s important to you…then why are they your vendor? Because it’s easier to deal with the problem than fix it?
That’s just crazy!