IHS: Customer experience top priority among telcos

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As subscriber growth hits the brakes, telecom service providers are increasingly turning their attention to providing the best customer experience to minimise churn. Research by IHS Markit finds that 75 per cent of service provider respondents say that enhancing customer experience is their top digital transformation project, followed by automation (44 per cent) and cloudification (38 per cent).

“In this saturated world, subscriber growth is nonexistent—and without customers, service providers have no business,” said Stéphane Téral, executive director for mobile infrastructure and carrier economics research at IHS Markit. “With nowhere to go to find new ‘human customers,’ providers need to pay serious attention to their existing customer base.”

The report, Digital Transformation Strategies Service Provider Survey – 2018, assesses market trends, top telecom service providers’ plans, drivers and challenges, and selection criteria for vendor partners. Service providers participating in the study account for one-third of the world’s telecom revenue and capex.

Following are some additional findings from the survey:

  • Enhancing customer experience leads to major investment in network operations digital transformation with operations support systems (OSS), business support systems (BSS) and network management systems (NMS) accounting for 60 per cent
  • The Internet of Things (IoT), video and enterprise IP virtual private networks (IP VPNs) top the list of new digital services that service providers plan to launch over their transformed networks
  • Big data analytics, cloud, software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) are key digital transformation enablers that are already widely deployed across networks

“Digital transformation is everywhere and already affecting our lives,” Téral said. “The telecommunications industry is at the forefront of this transformation, both as an industry witnessing large-scale change in its market environment and as a key driver of worldwide digitisation.”

“There are now as many mobile subscriptions as people living on this planet, and those consumers are getting telecom service providers’ attention.”


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