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Hands off: 78% operators say automating service fulfilment is key to profits


A new study, based on responses from 150 operators globally, finds the industry collectively lost $30 billion (€26.97 billion) in 2019 due to poor automation of fulfilment and sales.

The second edition of Sigma Systems’ Create-Sell-Deliver Outlook, conducted by Coleman Parkes Research, found that only 25% of delivery tasks that could be automated are: most are fulfilled manually.

Network operators recognise the importance of automation in these areas, the study discovered, with 78% of them saying automation in service fulfilment is key to improved profitability.

More manual intervention

Despite this, two-thirds said that the level of manual intervention had increased either slightly or significantly over the last two years.

The survey found a belief among respondents that 14% of fulfilment tasks would always be manual.

When asked what impact 1% reduction in manual intervention would have on revenues, the respondents said there would be a 2% gain (1% higher than when the same question was asked last year).

This equates to $12 billion in additional revenues across tier-one and tier-two communications service providers (CSPs) worldwide.

Other opportunities

CSPs also see the value of automation beyond service fulfilment: respondents said increasing automation in the configuration and quoting process could increase annual revenues by an average of 3%, which equates to $18 billion globally.

Stephen Krajewski, Director of Product Marketing, Sigma Systems, noted, “It is sobering that at a time when 5G technology, smart cities and the Internet of Everything are becoming a reality, CSPs do not have fully automated processes when increasing automation and reducing manual intervention would have a marked impact on their business.”

“Improving revenues is a constant goal for CSPs, and at Sigma Systems our focus is to help our customers drive business transformation and product innovation by using catalog-driven systems to enable the most efficient end-to-end customer experience.”