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How Telecom Companies Can Win in the Digital Revolution

You are reading this article, right? That means you are already “digitized”.

Nowadays “digitization” is a trendy word, because every company is dramatically affected by the digitization. Many companies see the digital revolution as a threat to their business model. However, with that come massive opportunities.

In order not to just survive it, but also use its benefits, businesses need to be clear about their digital strategy and build necessary digital capabilities. Besides making the company flexible and streamline the operations, digitization also boosts customer-facing efficiency and maximizes company’s potential. So, the digital world changes and we need to change with it. Different industries react to this changes differently.

Now about Telecommunications industry and Telecom companies. The latter faces tough times as the digitization changes the industry vision and engenders slow decline.  More concretely, revenue growth reduced from 4.5 % to 4 %, EBITDA margins reduced from 25 % to 17 %, and cash-flow margins down from 15.6 % to 8 %. Besides, social media continues to open up new communication channels.

Maybe it’s all about the changes, new systems and innovations, but it contains a bunch of opportunities that every company can use to achieve a higher level of development. This is not a threat, but chance for telecom companies to rebuild their market positions, create new products for new target audiences and always be up to date. Should we remember the famous quote “What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger”. Yes, we should.

The telecom industry has been critical to the process of digitization across other sectors. As a Telecom company, in order to move forward with the changes digital world throws at us, you first need to change your mindset. After you can offer digital services to your customers, develop new products and you’ll better meet the needs of your customers.

The next question is “How telecom companies can use this revolutionary changes to benefit?” Here is how.

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#1 It all starts from the core

Digitization process starts from the core of your telecom company. Many customers research products online before completing their purchase in stores. One thing that is crucial to understand, is that customers’ needs have changed. Moreover, they prefer digital services.

According to McKinsey e-care survey 76 % of telecom company customers enjoy digital-only journeys, compared with 57 % for traditional channels. That makes you stop and think, right?  

Nowadays customers are looking for friendly interface across all channels, an exciting in-store experience, and fast service 24/7. Many companies seek to meet these requirements in order to not get thrown out of the competition.

Therefore, as a Telecom company, you should deal with these difficulties and create powerful customer relationship management systems. It will give an opportunity to follow customers’ digital footprints, decrease costs, promote your brand among new audiences and increase customer satisfaction.

But, of course, we shouldn’t forget about analytic tools, which are major differentiators allowing operators to leverage knowledge from data and increase their margins. Telecom companies need to see the big picture in order to stay on top of today’s trends. You can use analytic tools to make better solution-focused decisions, improve network design and interface and increase customer satisfaction.


#2  A step towards adjacent businesses

Some top level telecom companies are in the early stages of developing digital-services portfolios. This will build new partnerships with third parties that bring specialist expertise to complement the telcos’ strong customer relationships and broad reach.

Meanwhile, it’s not that easy to be a multi service providing company. As a Telecom company you should create a detailed offer for adjacent opportunities. You should also identify your market position, customer segment, service type, and develop platform based solutions.

Adjacent businesses are effective sources of sales growth if you can spot them and if you have the right skills to go after them. So look at your company’s potential and it’s existing channels. Find new ways to use those potentials in your accessible channels and you’ll be on your way to a new sales growth opportunity.


#3 Building digital capabilities

Building essential digital capabilities is a key to success in digital revolution. Hiring, developing, and retaining the appropriate talent will require a sustained effort. However, in the same time, it will create an effective strategy for sourcing the right people and products.

In the fast-moving digital world, finding the efficient tools and talents is necessary. Technology-driven changes are accelerating and you should focus on agility and learning.

Building digital capabilities framework means to gain a bunch of skills from a wide range of academic, administrative and professional roles. Those will allow company and the staff to thrive in a digital environment.


#4 It is all about IT

The emerging of technology has dramatically changed our lifestyle. We no longer carry books with us, we don’t watch TV and our ways of communication has changed as well. Invention and development of technology had positive and negative influences on the Telecommunication industry too.

For operators, streamlining their application landscape and standardizing their IT infrastructure will be regarded as more important than anything else. The Telecom companies, which simplified and automated backbone IT processes and systems, will have a competitive advantage in the digital world.

Moreover, in emerging markets telecom managers should focus on business development instead of scrambling to augment their IT infrastructure.

#5 Customer-oriented is what you need to be

To build a long-term relationship with a customer and improve their performance you should walk along the entire customer journey from the beginning to the end. After, you will gather the needed information to support an ideal journey for your customer. I mean, you want your customers to be happy, right? Walk through the journey with their shoes on and see if that makes you happy.

Moving on, you should create a company culture focused on caring. Make sure it’s easy for everyone to communicate and stay on the same page so that nobody feels like they’re facing a difficult problem alone. These caused by the increasing importance of an end-to-end customer experience improvement approach.

Today, when the corporate environment is rapidly transitioning, you need to use new possibilities to gather digitized business data and create new layers of value-added products and services.

The difficulties that come with digitization are a lot, but the opportunities to opens up are even bigger. Maybe digitization has its difficulties, but if you find the way to handle it you will be a step ahead from your competitors. And you will be ready for future market challenges.

Do you want to become stronger and more profitable than before as a Telecom company? Then you need to admit the new changes in the digital world and be fully involved in the whole digitization process.


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Topics: Industry Trends & Insights

Posted by Kristina P. on Nov 20, 2017 12:41:33 PM