As consumer markets reach saturation and traditional voice and data services start leveling off in terms of revenue growth, more and more telcos are turning their attention to the enterprise space. While it’s a pretty small segment in terms of numbers, it’s also a serious revenue opportunity.
However, as some telcos have already discovered the hard way, the enterprise services segment is a tough nut to crack - especially when your expertise lies primarily on the consumer side. This is especially problematic now that customer experience is a key competitive metric. Telcos have to deliver the best possible customer experience to its enterprise customers, and as they’re discovering, CEM for enterprises is a different proposition from CEM for consumers. It’s easy to get wrong - and it’s often because of billing problems.
One of the great ironies of the digital transformation age is that the billing relationship with customers is one key advantage telcos have over OTT players, and yet billing is still an issue that many still struggle with, especially with B2B customers. Billing problems are one of the chief reasons an enterprise customer will call in to complain.
Telecom Asia e-Brief: Enterprise CEM
There are numerous reasons for this, and there are plenty of technological solutions and CEM strategies being touted to address the problem. But before telcos can choose the best solutions to solve the problem, they need a better understanding of just what the problem is - and how big it is. And if they’re going to serve both consumers and enterprises, they have to understand how their requirements differ. Establishing the absolute basics - and getting them right - will be key in building everything else that follows.
A history of disconnect
When it comes to B2B billing and CEM, many telcos have a couple of strikes against them.
One: until recently, the general relationship between telcos and customers of all stripes was very much a top-down experience. It’s only in recent years that customers have become empowered enough to demand better, and only in the last few years that telcos began focusing not just on the customer relationship, but the customer experience.
And second: most telcos have been focused on the consumer business rather than the enterprise segment simply because that’s where the growth is. Enterprises may be high-ARPU customers, but they’re also vastly outnumbered and outpaced by consumers. As such, many telcos have been focusing their backend and CEM development on the consumer segment and - more often than not - using the same system to serve enterprises.