Catalog moves to center of IT platform

Simon Osborne and Bob Machin
Comptel
‘Catalog’ is no longer the ‘new new idea’. The market is maturing and the basic principles have been validated by many early adopters. Most importantly, as service portfolios have become more broad and open, service providers have come to realize that simple commercial product catalogs can’t deliver the agility and rapid deployment that they need in order to be competitive.
 
In many instances, commercial catalogs which are often built into CRM have become weighed down with elaborate change processes and data governance rules in an attempt to model commercial, technical and operational processes.
 
This approach has been labeled product lifecycle management. Ironically, the concept has often become detached from the actual capabilities of the organization, becoming an end in itself and resulting in the catalog increasing rather than shortening time to market.
 
This experience has re-energized thinking around how catalogs could be used to deliver the lean processing efficiencies witnessed in other high-tech industries over recent decades. This means abstracting the capabilities of the whole business to allow faster and more efficient product development, launch and delivery.
 
In particular, we are starting to see catalog being used less as a standalone repository or design platform, and more as a highly efficient driver of other business operations. Product information is increasingly abstracted to the catalog from fulfillment, provisioning, activation, inventory, stock control and other OSS processes.
 
Organizational complexity is a key driver for catalog adoption. The need to manage converging technologies and dispersed capabilities across departmental and service boundaries is demanding that formal management of the service life cycle should be a key part of any operator’s OSS/BSS architecture.
 

Pages

Commentary

5G and data center-friendly network architectures

Matt Walker / MTN Consulting

Webscale and transmission network operators' interests are aligning as the 5G era dawns

Matt Walker / MTN Consulting

Webscale and transmission network operators' interests are aligning as the 5G era dawns

Rémy Pascal / Analysys Mason

The launch of 5G by South Korean operators serves as a first benchmark for other operators around the world