Predicting and preventing network nightmares
Despite a solid performance from network operators over the London 2012 Olympics, last year saw a few incidents of network outages, which caused considerable chaos and fall out among the mobile consumers. In some instances, it took up to 24 hours to identify the problem and rectify the situation.
If you consider that some network outages can affect all customers in a particular geographic region and in some cases the entire country, this is no insignificant amount of damage to brand, not accounting for loss of trust and revenue, and brand damage among both consumer and corporate clients.
In a competitive market, a real-time and top down view of customer and network operations is absolutely critical to avoiding these hiccups. There should be no reason for a multiple hour delay to identify problems, if the following five areas are covered.
- Ensure visibility – can your operations provide a vertical (top down) view, so you can simultaneously view network and customer problems, and prioritise accordingly? In many operations, the customer complaint arises, with still no way of linking this back to network performance, creating an all too common ‘needle in a haystack’ situation.
- Report as one – the horizontal (multiple vendor and domain) view, your management reports need to be able to track events and data across a number of systems, companies, affiliations and centres, efficiently. You cannot afford to extract data from multiple sources and present this as a disparate view to management. You need some way to automate a single, horizontal view of reporting.
- Deploy predictive analytics – any analytical system can benefit from the application of streaming analytics. Communications companies can analyse call data records in real time, among a multitude of other information, to offer better service and rates.
- Optimise the infrastructure – you should be able to exchange and interface between network operators, receiving accurate and dependable performance reports of shared infrastructures. Third party systems, which provide a consistent and honest view of multiple operators, are imperative.
- Respond rapidly to change – are you currently restricted in your ability to quickly and cost effectively enhance operational systems to manage new service offerings to meet the very demanding needs of your customers? The need to implement a solution that evolves with your business, and to engage with a flexible and reliable partner with a good track record of success, is essential when working with the complex process of unification and migration to the next generation of systems and services.
If you can tick the box with regard to the above five areas, your customer service and network operations should run seamlessly, hand-in-hand, and you should be sleeping well at night. However, as incidents have shown, this clearly isn’t always the case.
We will drill down further into each of these areas over the forthcoming weeks. In the meantime, if you have any questions you want answered, or would like to share your network nightmares, please comment below.