If you are a telco in the cloud space or trying to get in it and make a big difference quick, here are three tools you need in your arsenal.
- Mature Cloud Management – If you are developing your own cloud management tool or experimenting with OpenStack to get a commercial offer to market – stop what you are doing! You are going to waste valuable time and money and in the meantime, your competitors are going to take over the market. Consider that globally a new telco service is now launched every working day of the year according to Ovum. If you wait, you’ll lose money – and that is a certainty. Don’t gamble on your cloud management tool. Instead, select a mature, well-tested and scalable solution.
You’ll want to ensure it can be customized to your business, offer a dashboard view of the world to you, your resellers, customers and users. You’ll also want the ability to deliver complex applications on your cloud infrastructure quickly and easily, create, manage and deploy application templates on multiple servers, networks and images and for it to be an easy process.
Finally, you want your cloud management solution to be extensible. Get to market today with software that works, but then as your customers’ needs increase, ensure you have the ability to EASILY integrate it with other technologies using various APIs. Ensure the solution is adaptable so that you can extend it based on your business and customers need.
- Multi-Cloud Management – Telcos sit in a great spot what with owning the network. When delivering cloud services this is powerful. Not only can you offer your own cloud services, but also those of others – AWS, Google, Azure, etc. Being able to deliver these services through one dashboard is even better. Get a solution that allows you to deliver multi-cloud management easily. The result? Giving your customers freedom while maintaining the customer relationship.
- Integrated Metering and Billing – You have extensive billing methods, but now you have the cloud. You need a solution for integrating your metering and billing into your existing technology while ensuring you are appropriately accounting for the cost of the cloud. A solid cloud management solution can help you with this. And working with a vendor that had done it before can help you with a number of considerations:
- How will you ensure you can bill for what is used?
- Does this need to be multi-level?
- Will you offer Pay as You Go (PAYG) cloud?
- Do you need metering and billing built into your platform so you are not spending additional funds on a separate system?
- Do you already have an existing system like Odin Service Automation you’d like to integrate with?
You’ll need software to support this. Keep in mind that there may be an additional cost to use an external solution as well as integration costs (licensing, set up, integration). There are some mistakes to avoid when metering and billing for cloud services – so make sure you avoid those.
Most telcos will have already started their cloud transformation. Whether you are at the beginning of this journey or deep into it, download a checklist of recommendations spanning the business side to the technology, all the way to customer acquisition.