To achieve zero-touch orchestration for fulfillment of NFV/SDN and cloud services, service providers first need to overcome inefficiencies at the service creation stage. So zero-touch orchestration needs one-touch service creation to get the real benefits.
Currently, service creation typically means close coordination between different teams within service providers to configure the disparate IT, network systems, product, service and resource catalogs (best of breed setup). Intricate testing is carried out before launch to ensure consistency and correctness in the service’s configuration.
The process is largely manual and prone to human error, due to a mixed, complex environment and the lack of APIs to facilitate service creation. This means service creation is too slow to compete in the digital economy.
Hence the objective of the One-Touch Service Creation for Zero-Touch Orchestration Catalyst project, is to develop and demonstrate a one-touch service creation environment. It is championed by Globe Telecom of the Philippines (see its Head of Enterprise Architecture, Vincent Seet, talking about the project in the video below) and supported by participants Huawei, Infosys and VMWare.
A chief component of this environment is a unified user interface for creating digital services. This is where product information, related service and resource parameters could be defined and pushed automatically to the product, service and resource catalogs. These, and other relevant parameters, could be sent downstream to IT and network systems (such as PCRF, PCEF, TDF, NFV MANO, SDN controllers, cloud management and legacy element management systems) with workflows built-in for testing during staging and production environment deployments (as shown below).
APIs and architecture
The project team is developing a new class of APIs specifically for unified service creation across multiple domains, which will be freely available for TM Forum’s members to use once the project and demo are completed.
Likewise, the architecture is based on the guiding principles established by TM Forum’s ZOOM project (which is all about zero-touch orchestration and management for NFV). Although service creation varies between service providers, due to their different technologies and solutions, there are still many similarities in terms of the service parameters. So the templates created in this Catalyst could be foundational for service creation generally, and extended as necessary. Such service creation templates are not readily available today.
The One-Touch Service Creation for Zero-Touch Orchestration Catalyst will be demonstrated at TM Forum Live! In Nice, May 15-18. Participants will be on hand to advise how the results were achieved, how they can be implemented and what benefits they bring. Definitely not one to miss.