As customers’ digital expectations and privacy concerns increase, communications service providers (CSPs) need to build a fully integrated ecosystem for earning new revenue as well as offering an interactive, seamless and innovative experience.
Customers now spend more time online in their everyday lives and are demanding easy access to online researching of products with a view to either purchasing online and collecting in store or opting for delivery at home. And they want to be able to switch easily from online to offline activity. This sales/prospect journey also needs to be mobile-friendly so there is no disruption to the customer’s day-to-day way of life.
CSP sales reps also need to have one fully integrated interface so that the process in store is faster, more secure and the customer experience improved. They don’t want to toggle between systems to fulfill tasks like saving customer data, verifying identity and credit worthiness, choosing special mobile numbers, checking commercial eligibility and service qualification, right down to generating, saving and signing contracts, where applicable.
Becoming an integrator
Ideally, CSPs want to become a ‘customer experience integrator’ as a single point of sale for various services (telco, bank, insurance), and they want to be able to offer services that use data/metrics extracted through analytics from this integrated application. This is the focus of the Digital One-stop Shop Catalyst, a TM Forum proof-of-concept project that Orange is championing and includes Globetom, Infonova, NTS Retail and QualyCloud as participants.
The Catalyst aims to be mindful of customers’ concerns about private, personal data collected by the CSP – particularly if it is to be shared with third parties. Customers may even want to check whether the CSP is compliant with current privacy regulations and decide if they want to share their information.
Ideally this will be achieved via a dashboard with a complete view of their personal data and how it is collected and stored. Customers will be more comfortable and likely to trust their CSP with personal information if they can manage it (consent, delete, request) and even make it available for sale.
Developing new models
As CSPs transform into digital service providers, they will also need to build new financial models for their emerging retail digital ecosystem, selling anything from devices to insurance in consignment/installment/leasing modes. And that will mean having to manage partners in real time from onboarding to settlement.
The overall objective of the Digital One-stop Shop Catalyst, which will be demonstrated at TM Forum Live! in May, is to demonstrate how CSPs will be able to:
- improve customer experience through an omnichannel strategy and by adopting a shorter and smoother enrollment process;
- dematerialize paperwork in stores and archives;
- reinvent the customer relationship with the use of a privacy dashboard;
- decrease churn rates because customers will be more satisfied;
- diversify their revenues with new B2B2X models; and
- onboard partners faster and more efficiently.
The project will accomplish this using TM Forum Open APIs (Customer, Product Catalog, Product Ordering, Product Inventory, Billing and Privacy) to connect partners. The team is also using the Forum’s customer experience management assets and the Privacy Dashboard.
Watch Hervé Bouvier, Project Director, Orange, outline the Catalyst’s objectives in this video: