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Oct 27 2015

6 golden rules for consolidating network operations

This blog is by Miguel Couves at Nokia Networks. Twitter: @nokianetworks

This is the second in a mini-series of blogs by our transformation consultants on how to prepare for the programmable world where everyone and everything will be connected.

If you’re currently busy consolidating your network operations center (NOC), you’re certainly not alone – NOC consolidation is a major industry trend right now.

Prompted by the need to be more efficient, respond more quickly to customer needs, or as a result of a merger, NOC consolidation can bring major benefits. For example, a recent project Nokia Networks carried out for a South American operator achieved a 21% reduction in OPEX and improved first time fixes by 23%.

It can also make an operator more agile, more able to introduce new services quickly. Operators are currently facing churn rates of 40%, but when they introduce a new type of service, operators increase their ‘stickiness’ by 15%.

But what makes for a good consolidation project? Based on 30 such projects for operators, I’ve drawn up some ‘golden rules’ that help everything run smoothly.

Rule 1: Communicate – Let everyone know that changes are about to happen. From upper management to engineers doing day-to-day operations, everyone needs to know his or her part in the project.

Rule 2: Changes – Be sure to implement changes to your work processes before kicking off the consolidation project. It minimizes extra costs and confusion.

Rule 3: People – Identify your key people and transfer them to the new central location. Knowledge is the key to managing a network so ensure that knowledge is where it needs to be.

Rule 4: Leave – Postpone leaves of absence for your key people until three months after the project.

Rule 5: Redundancy – All your eggs will be in one basket, so there should be significantly less redundancy in the new location versus the previous ones. Also ensure that you have a business continuity plan in place.

Rule 6: Language – Define a common language, even if another language is spoken locally. Ideally, the centralized location should have people speaking all the languages used by the projects.

Nokia Networks provides a range of expert services that helps take the pain out of any consolidation project by identifying the requirements for a successful project. The NOC Consolidation Service typically begins with an assessment phase to establish and measure a set of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for the operator to benchmark against its competitors.

Stick to these 6 golden rules and you’ll have the best chance for a successful consolidation project and all the benefits it can bring.

For a helicopter view, check out our new Nokia Consolidation Services infographic:

Consolidation_Nokia_infographic

Please share your thoughts on this topic by replying below – and join the Twitter discussion with @nokianetworks using #Nokia #NetworksPerform #mobilebroadband #ExpertAdvantage #services.

About Miguel Couves

Miguel Couves works in the Tools and Automation team of Managed Services at Nokia Networks. If he’s not meeting a customer or discussing new and renewed contracts with his internal team, he is using his mobile phone while biking to measure heart rate, track location, suffer score – or to take pictures.

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