In Dubai 16th – 17th of April the Managed Services Growth Market conference was held. Ericsson had a large presence with four slots on the agenda. In the opening speech, Zarn Kucel, Head of Ericsson Managed Services Sales Engagement in the CEMA region, talked about Managed Services in the context of the Networked Society. What role Managed Services can and will play going forward was discussed by many speakers on day one.
The development towards a Networked Society is increasing complexity of networks and business for operators. It also creates a market more and more driven by consumer needs as consumers can choose from an abundance of brands, products and services when communicating, sharing, and socializing. As the capacity and capabilities of the networks’ opens up for new innovations and business opportunities competition is also increasing, or "the market is hyper competitive and highly dynamic", as Akshay Lamba, from Indian operator MTS put it. On top of this many operators face a financial pressure.
The way for operators to address these challenges and to improve their ability to grasp the opportunities arising is to focus and to re-evaluate their position in the market and in the industry value chain.
In this context the Managed Services model can play a vital part in operators’ strategies as it frees up resources and enable specialization, higher focus on user experience and customer relationships and improve innovation power, agility and speed. All key for sustainable business differentiation and success in the Networked Society.
If the first day of the Managed Services Growth Market conference in Dubai focused on what role Managed Services can and will play going forward the second day focused on how the Managed Services model as such needs to evolve to really be a strategic asset for operators.
As the market becomes more and more consumer driven the focus of the Managed Services model is also shifting - from network operations centric to user and service centric. The main objective is not only to deliver on certain technical key performance indicators but to proactively assure that user services are delivered at the expected quality.
This shift of focus requires a broader, holistic perspective including the network, the IT environment, the applications and the devices as the user experience is determined by all these parts.
An example of how to create this holistic perspective is the Ericsson Managed End-User Service Assurance (MESA), a methodology to assure the quality of services delivered to users.
The evolution of the Managed Services model also includes a shift in the set-up of the agreements. The engagements and the governance of them are turning focus towards aligning business objectives and strategic direction, rather than only meeting specific technical requirements.
The final aspect of the evolution of the Managed Services concept is the development of new and flexible business model, like for example revenue sharing-, wholesale- and cloud models.
The Managed Services model has a role to play in the development of the Networked Society but it has to further evolve to meet operator demands.