The future of Revenue Assurance – ‘Expert opinion’

One of the most evolving functions in the telco BSS side of things is Revenue Assurance. Over the years, it has molded itself into many forms catering to changing business needs, new offerings and market dynamics. However, now seems to be a time that is different from anything we have seen earlier, as the influence of ‘Digital’ on telcos is immense. The possibilities for telcos in the digital world are infinite, and so are the risks – providing immense scope for the evolution of traditional functions like Revenue Assurance. So, we went about asking some of the highly regarded RA experts in the industry what they think is the future of the Revenue Assurance function is, and here is what they said (listed in alphabetical order)

“The Telecom industry has cut across economic barriers and has created a media that surpasses limitations placed on the economy of a nation by its physical infrastructure. The Telecom revolution has hit all countries across the globe from first world to third world. As markets mature and subscribers grow in numbers, new operators set up operations to tap the markets, existing operators face pressures to maintain their customer base, ARPU and ultimately their margins.
The advent of competition has brought about a need to maintain the top lines of the companies, which can be achieved by effective strategy and efficient operations which has very well visible digital Impact. One of the key components for maintaining revenues and profitability is through operational efficiency by continuous deployment of is Revenue Assurance controls across Revenue streams.”

linkedin Amit Agrawal, Du – EITC

“RA solutions continue to address different threats as new services are deployed, however IoT usage patterns means need automated customization for each deployment is needed, requiring and understanding of each application.
Real-time monitoring shifts RA solutions into operational systems providing fraud management capabilities, helping to mitigate risks and build trust for customers.
CSPs tempted to reduce investments should consider it like continuing vaccinations even when a disease is eradicated”

linkedin Justin van der Lande, Analysys Mason

“I believe as Revenue Assurance is gradually evolving towards Business Assurance and telecom industry is transforming towards the digital arena, the role of business assurance will increasingly focus on adding value in business decision making owing to its enhanced analytical capabilities & commercial ingenuity using artificial intelligence, robotics and next-generation business assurance solutions. This will shift the emphasis from revenue saving to value maximization, operational efficiency and reduction in residual losses through proactive controls & processes.”

linkedin Mustafa Ali, Batelco

“Automation, Digitalization, Process Optimization, everything evolves with customer needs and business risks. In essence, RA should be an agile process with no manual activity: you always need to have the right indicators, suitable and comprehensive, scalable and quickly. In my opinion, a large part of RA should be integrated and taken into account at the time of the construction of the equipment managing offers and revenue streams.
Solution providers and manufacturers should combine their know-how to integrate upstream and perfect this dimension of control.”

Ndeye Coumba, Sonatel

“Business transformation is taking place faster and the sources of income generation change in the same way. Traditional revenues are being replaced by new digital businesses, which are supported by processes with technologies that require evolving with more efficient control models, capable of processing a lot of information in real time.
Revenue from new digital businesses and carrier billing has been rising in the order of 25% per year and from the revenue assurance area we have the challenge of transforming ourselves to detect unknown errors that are not evident today. The idea is to take advantage of big data always safeguarding the relevance of information security and privacy, to strengthen and give intelligence to our controls, anticipating risks and avoiding potential leaks, not only with the view of income, but in an integral way that allows us to ensure the business margin in an increasingly competitive market.”

linkedin Nelson Sepúlveda B., Telefónica / Movistar Chile

“In the era of 5G, CSPs are looking at their revenue assurance functions to monetise zeta-bytes of structured & unstructured data to detect patterns, outliers, and learning behaviours. The proliferation of products and the emergence of and API based economy have pushed RA/FM professionals have to find new ways to keep pace with the industry. AI/ML algorithms will assist RA/FM experts to relieve some of the workload and will allow them to take data driven decisions. Data scientists will play a role in creating, adapting and executing models that will detect new issues, reduce the number of false positives, increase the coverage, and improve accuracy. In the future years, Revenue Assurance will play an even more crucial role to protect the bottom line and create enough opportunities to enhance the top line.”

linkedin Nikhil Sehgal, Colt

“Digital innovations clearly place consequential challenges on Telcos who must reinvest in and reinvent themselves for incremental revenues in a competitive arena. Therefore, the future of revenue assurance rests in focus beyond controlling leakages within acceptable limits, to focusing value enhancements from statistically discernible causes of performance departures for tracking and improving stated objectives. With the best end-to-end visibility of the revenue value chain, under-funding assurance places a liability on the future.”

linkedin Ope Faniran, 9Mobile

“Considering the evolution of business dynamics, the scale at which Revenue Assurance is maturing is incredible with more focus on cost optimization, capex management, and knife-edge driven preventive measures thereby climbing up the ladder to be owner of Business Assurance. Growth demands RA to become BA with getting rid of ROI instead to play pivotal role in mitigating risks and minimizing leakages to bring in more value to the company.”

linkedin Sai Devata, Viva Kuwait

“As the industry goes digital the challenges for revenue assurance will change but basics will remain. As Revenue Assurance professionals, we need to understand the new risk landscape: cybersecurity and eco-system weaknesses will bring new risks. Digital solutions will also provide new opportunities to assure revenues and transactions. We need to embrace digital and ensure business processes are born digital with Revenue Assurance embedded in them leveraging on new technology as we do so.”

linkedin Sarah Hakeem, Millicom

“The Customer being the nucleus of the business, the future of Revenue Assurance is definitely to assure a superior customer journey and experience. Besides business growth, QoS, profitability, and enhancing the culture of risk management, as telcos continue to evolve into Digital Service Providers, RA will further step up to play a decisive role in assuring security of its services, data privacy, regulatory compliance and data governance.”

linkedin Straus Dias, Ooredoo Qatar

“With the ever-evolving and increasingly complex business models governing telecommunications, driven by competition to provide subscribers with an expanding array of devices (from phones and accessories to branding merchandise) and services (from voice and data to media and entertainment), legacy views of Revenue Assurance will have decreasing financial value. Revenue Assurance organizations will be forced to consider costs for performing margin assurance, while also understanding business opportunities and risks in a broader Business Assurance role.”

linkedin Taruna Rajan, T-Mobile

So, those were the views of some of the top RA practitioners in the industry. What are your thoughts on the subject? Let us know in the comments section.

If you want your thoughts to be featured in the next ‘Experts opinion’ article, write to us here.

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