What makes enterprise business the new hotspot of telco growth?
B2C revenues continue to decline.
Over-the-top (OTT) platforms are burning through the biggest differentiation that carriers had – providing ways to communicate. Agile digital platform players are eating into telco revenues through secure, simple, and sticky communication capabilities on top of telco networks. Think WhatsApp for texting, Facetime for video calling, Flipboard for news, Spotify for music, and Amazon Prime for digital content. 4G maturity and the ubiquity of high-speed data networks are nudging customers out of traditional telecom into the app economy.
To stay profitable, telcos have been tapping into the B2B growth story. Some reports predict that the telecom enterprise services market will reach USD 237 billion by 2025. But B2B customers have high expectations, and most of them don’t see telecom operators innovative enough to meet their requirements. Enterprise services comprise mobility tools like managed services for enterprises, storage solutions, and custom services for small businesses. MVNO alone is expected to grow to USD 89 billion by 2024, and one of its drivers is increasing uptake of MVNO services by small and medium enterprises.
5G and IoT will spur enterprise growth.
Foreseeing the digital disruption, some operators have been re-examining their market positions and extending their services to corporate customers, fixed line services, online banking, and more. But telcos should also carefully monitor the enterprise business space to discover new opportunities in a smart world. Here are some growth levers to look out for:
- Autonomous vehicles – 5G will drive machine-to-machine (M2M) communications whereby vehicles can communicate with other vehicles, MET departments, traffic control systems, and more. Coupled with edge computing and ultra-reliable low latency communication, this will allow on-the-go decisions about alternate driving routes as well as real-time recommendations for repairs or fuel stations.
- Public infrastructure – Municipal corporations are actively evaluating how to use IoT for smarter governance. Through 5G, utility companies will be able to track resource usage, such as electricity and water usage remotely. Sensors can notify public works departments, enabling rapid responses in cases of flooding drains faulty traffic lights, fused streetlights, and accidents.
- Healthcare – As smart devices go cellular, carriers become the portal through which large amounts of health-related data flow between patients and physicians. Think external smart devices tracking vital signs (like respiration for asthma) or smart drugs monitoring internal functions. All this data must be transmitted continuously, securely, to the right provider.
- Industrial safety – With its extremely low latency, 5G will drive greater advances in remote-controlled devices that will be more responsive, energy-efficient, and intuitive. Man-machine interactions through remote-controlled robots can ensure worker safety in hazardous environments like mining industries and even precision surgery in healthcare.
Prepare for change.
- Customer demographics will change – The entire telecom customer demographic will transform radically to include new kinds of enterprise business customers that want to tap into 5G use cases.
- Network traffic will evolve – Due to the changing customer demographic, the type of network traffic will evolve dramatically from call detail record (CDR) based to event-based traffic.
- Data volumes will skyrocket – Operators will be swamped with tremendous amounts of data originating from their extended B2B ecosystem across verticals.
It’s going to be partnerships, all the way.
Seizing this opportunity, we can expect telcos to partner with enterprises, IoT-specific mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) and digital upstarts with the objective of:
- Expanding verticals to bundle offerings that are truly innovative. To help enterprises deal with rising device penetration, adoption and connection, some operators provide enterprise connectivity solutions. Through this, enterprises can manage all their SIM cards used for device cellular connectivity and M2M communication with advanced device analytics, self-care options, and more, from a single pane.
- Selling insights based on enterprise data. McKinsey has already investigated this and predicts that digital and analytics can give telcos 5-15% incremental revenues in its B2B segment. Some use cases here include dynamic deal scoring, personalized campaigns, next-product-to-buy algorithms, and predicting network outages or inefficiencies for faster remediation and greater customer satisfaction.
- Becoming a hub of contractual compliance between multiple partners. Subex is helping telcos leverage the power of AI to for intelligent contracting, thereby minimizing disputes, enhancing contract performance, and ensuring partner satisfaction.
- Enforcing digital trust and data security. With increasing amounts of data passing through telcos, some operators are offering a full range of enterprise cybersecurity products along with consulting, professional, and managed security services. Coordinated security solutions can centralize data management and security in accordance with various national guidelines, making compliance and security easier and more cost-effective.
Collaboration is the new competition.
CSPs can metamorphize into nerve centers that facilitate the right connections between businesses and customers. But, their competitive edge in tomorrow’s connected world will depend on how quickly and efficiently they forge partnerships and collaborations. With higher numbers of partners and connections as well as bundled services and products, operators will be responsible for encapsulating terms, rating billing data, and ensuring quality of service levels. Thus, operators must be ready with transparent, agile, and intelligent enterprise billing systems that simplify partner management.
Unlocking new growth paradigms with enterprise business.
Shubham is the Product Director for Partner Settlement portfolio at Subex. She has 13+ years of experience in Telecom Industry with expertise in Retail, Enterprise and Interconnect Billing along with Route Optimization. Throughout her career, she has had the opportunity to work with a wide range of global customers and provided solutions to their billing requirements as a Billing SME.