The changing face of managed services

Adaora Okeleke/Ovum
07 Oct 2013

The recent 2013 Managed Services World Congress in London highlighted the evolving nature of managed services, as the focus moves away from cost and towards assuring business value. Improved service delivery and customer experience have become key requirements for telcos looking to remain competitive. However, telcos need to clearly specify their business objectives, communicate these to vendors, and create an environment that enables vendors to achieve these business objectives.

Vendors meanwhile are also looking to move away from the “your mess for less” managed services scenario to providing value add and delivering a complete offer that supports telcos’ overall business objectives and improves customer experience. However, they must assure telcos that they are capable of delivering on these objectives by ensuring that their managed services portfolio caters for the full range of services desired by telcos.

The value proposition for managed services is evolving with an increased focus on customer centricity and improved service delivery. With fierce competition in both developed and developing markets, improved service quality and customer experience management have become the key differentiators for telcos.

High-quality service delivery to both consumers and enterprises demands an end-to-end approach to management of the whole ecosystem. This includes the network infrastructure, IT platforms, and support systems such as billing, marketing and customer management, and increasingly device management. As a result, telcos need to re-evaluate the basis on which they engage vendor services and move beyond network management to include all or parts of these roles.

Telcos need to clearly define their business objectives

Telcos must clearly specify their business objectives if they wish to derive value from their managed services deals beyond cost and operational efficiencies. The contract should specify the telco’s desired business outcomes. In addition, when selecting a vendor partner, the managed service portfolio should not be the only item for consideration; the full (professional) service portfolio is important, as is the financial stability of the supplier and the capabilities of the staff assigned to the contract.

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