SLA fulfillment key to customer loyalty, business growth

Nathan Rae, Vallent Corp.
25 Oct 2006



Managing service quality for enterprise customers provides not only a great selling strategy, but also a great diagnostic tool. By actively monitoring performance across the entire network, operators can identify and solve potential problems on the network long before it significantly impacts on business and operations. 


By identifying and efficiently rectifying the root causes of service-threatening issues, operators enhance the overall health of their infrastructure. Operators can, therefore, attract customers on every level, because they can guarantee the continual and aggressive improvement of quality.


When it comes to SLAs, carriers should give priority to increased enterprise customer growth and retention, evolution toward a more customer-centric organization, establishment of strong end-to-end service quality benchmarks, rapid detection, localization and causal analysis of service-impacting problems, and risk reduction associated with introduction of customer SLAs.


Given the importance of service quality for enterprise customers and the relatively narrow margin for error, operators are in a position to demand SLAs from their OSS providers, just as enterprise customers will demand SLAs of their service provider. 


Managing quality of service by customer group or customer segment is critical to driving all aspects of the customer-operator ecosystem. Operators should be able determine who, how, what, when and where a service is used.


They need a solution that provides real-time visibility of service performance against SLAs and other service quality benchmarks. The solution must also equip them with tools to support meaningful, quantifiable and demonstrable customer success.


Prioritizing service resources maximizes customer and business impact. SLAs ensure the proactive identification of customer-impacting problems before those customers contact the operator. They prioritize network operators' efforts to fix issues based on contracted SLA criteria.


Operators should also be able to see a reduction in customer complaints by receiving regular reports by their OSS provider to illustrate the service performance over a given period of time. In turn, this improves customer care, reduces the overall cycle time to resolve problems, and functions as an end-to-end view of new service quality.


Nathan Rae is a channel sales and marketing director at Vallent Corp.


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