Telecommunication (Telco) companies everywhere share a similar vision: future-proofing their organizations for an unpredictable era of challenges and opportunities in an unreliable economy.
Rebounds from the pandemic started out slow and patchy, and leading up to present day, moves like inflation-laced price increases and merger and acquisition (M&A) deals have ramped up share prices across the global telecoms sector to climb back up from 2020’s rock bottom. Operating environments remain volatile, and to compete telcos need to expand the scope of their digital transformation initiatives.
Telcos must start in their IT departments to enhance efficiency, drive cost savings, and multiply productivity as to strengthen their organizations for anything that might lie ahead in an ever-changing business landscape.
Driving Business Value with Automation: A Framework for Strategy and Success
The Resolve Automation Capabilities Framework provides a comprehensive approach to drive business value with automation, and consists of four types that build onto each other over time.
Type 1: Eliminating Toil
Toil is often the easy place to start with automation, making IT jobs easier by taking over repetitive, low-value tasks. IT staff; therefore, can do more powerful work that serves a greater purpose.
Type 2: Single IT Processes
Automating multiple steps within an IT process cover a span of technologies, but stay within a specific IT function. They step things up a notch from automating tactical tasks.
Type 3: Cross-functional IT Processes
End-to-end process automation can take on cross-department IT functions, and potentially impact more than one silo at a time. Automating an entire process, getting visibility into it, and adding intelligence along the way allows companies to cut labor costs.
Type 4: Business Outcomes
The transformative potential of automation enables organizations and IT teams to think “automation-first” and reimagine the role of technology. End-to-end process automation, especially in telcos, can influence an automation investment based on business priorities, and then make the business more competitive.
An important note for success: Never lose sight of the business outcomes that matter most for your particular organization and its individual priorities.
Automation Focus Areas in Action: Four Use Cases for Achieving Business Goals
Telco customers have extensive needs that aren’t always easy to provide according to their increased expectations. It takes networks that are flexible, easy to manage, swiftly provisioned, and personalized with certain service quality and service level agreements (SLAs).
Telco organizations can use the Resolve Automation Capabilities Framework to take a strong, proactive approach when it comes to delivering improved experiences as they integrate automation throughout their operations. It’s about taking a telecom-specific route toward digital transformation.
Resolve’s automation focus areas emphasize increased efficiency, efficacy, and agility based on desired business outcomes, such as revenue growth, service assurance and service delivery, and risk management. The Resolve Framework helps organizations roughly evaluate and decide which processes are best suited to benefit from automation.
It also establishes a systematic approach to fuse automation into processes, in order to maximize investments and yield fast wins, as well as set future automation efforts up for success with business outcomes top of mind.
The following four use cases identify key ways in which automation is most useful for telcos, along with real examples that your team can use:
Eliminating Toil for Telco IT teams
Individual tasks within a single IT process are automated to accomplish a very specific tactical task.
A Microsoft Windows PowerShell, for instance, can assemble cmdlets, variables, and other components into a script, which mirrors the sequence of commands and steps that an administrator would issue
s one-at-a-time via the command-line interface (CLI) to provision a virtual machine (VM) or establish a sound backup process.
Five Common Automations That Eliminate Toil
1. Syslog Audit: Help IT proactively look for alarm signals by automatically running an audit on the transmission syslog and emails exceptions.
2. Customer Power Check: Allow L1 agents to run a power check to reconfirm, as a last-minute due diligence before ticket closure.
3. Site Down Confirmation: Confirm, using a ping, that network connectivity for the site is down. Next, the automation files a ticket with the right details and assigns it to the right team for investigation.
4. Email to Ticket Creation: Create a new ITSM ticket from email for resource provisioning.
5. File Transfer: Run scheduled checks at a specified location for a file and transfer to other locations once available.
Single IT Process Automation for Telco IT teams
Telcos, when starting to automate single IT processes, open up to the idea of automation benefits and become willing to dedicate resources to advance it. Network engineers will often leverage IT process automation for incident, event, and diagnostics management, and therefore, hone in on more customer-centric processes.
Five Common Automations for Single IT Processes
1. Server Provisioning: Automatically provision Windows or Linux servers based on a request and permission levels.
2. Get Inventory Data: An automation is triggered from an ITSM ticket to gather inventory data for IP network/WLAN and update an SQL CMDB, and the CI in the ITSM platform.
3. Verify Incident: Validate an IT incident by automatically interrogating vendor specific IP network devices to confirm the validity of a network incident, update the ITSM ticket, and notify the user.
4. Customer Case Update Emails: Email case notifications to customers using a standard email template every time a customer case is updated in the ITSM platform.
5. Check for Duplicate Incidents: Check for duplicate incidents based on CI and CMDB data and move them to a separate queue.
Cross-functional Process Automation for Telco IT teams
Cross-functional IT process automation spans IT team silos and service incidents. In the employee onboarding process; for example, account provisioning can involve several distinct applications. Automating processes like these gets them done much faster and more efficiently, reduces the potential for human errors, increases cost savings, and more – all through a seamless and timely cross-team collaboration.
Three Common Automations for Cross-functional IT Processes:
1. Network Auto-remediation: Triggered from a big data analysis, a Rest Call to connect to an OMC initiates a Healing Action, which executes several commands to restore the Network Service or collect logfiles for future investigations.
2. Guided Incident Closure: Provide L1 engineers with a guided automation for incident closure.
3. Line Subspeed Alert: Ensure quality and performance of fixed IP services based on a bundle of physical lines (DFM) by identifying service degradation, diagnosing lines that are down, and applying a new configuration to either restore service or escalate it to a third party as needed.
Customer Experience IT Automations for Telco IT Teams
The customer experience a Telco delivers can make or break everything, especially now that the competition stakes are likely higher than ever. The winning strategy here is to hone in on automations of high-value use cases that impact Quality of Experience (QoE) and deployment speed.
Four Common Automations for Telco Customer Experience:
1. Sleeping Cells: A scheduled automation workflow, using performance statistics, connects to the Huawei Network Management system and runs commands to check the mobile network for sleeping cells. If detected, then remedial actions are performed, and an email notification is sent out. This will restore capacity to the Mobile Base Station Site.
2. Customer Care Status – HubTV: Wiki-based automations, largely used by NOC help desks, run diagnostics and services status tasks to provide customer help desks with information on customer service. This process can cover HUB TV, cable boxes (HFC), telephony, and ServAssure.
3. Service Configuration and Service Shifting: An automation is triggered from a service request, which retrieves all required information from a variety of third-party systems. This automation is combined with templates of Man-Machine Language (MML) commands, to eventually deploy the configuration script to the Huawei router.
For a more in-depth study guide on automation and how to best integrate it across your IT operations, download our newly released white paper,
“The Telecom Playbook for IT Automation.”