Features & opinions | 5g, Tech Mahindra

The CEO Playbook for Telcos: Simplify, Modernize, Monetize

August 18, 2023 | DTW news room

By Manish Vyas, President Communications, Media & Entertainment Industry and CEO, Network Services, Tech Mahindra

The telecommunications industry is undergoing significant changes. As digital adoption accelerates at an unprecedented rate, communication service providers (CSPs) are facing a crucial decision point. They must balance the potential for limitless opportunities with the challenges they face. Success in this era requires more than just keeping up; it demands radical reinvention.

Understanding the Market Shifts

CSPs are working tirelessly to enhance customer experiences, amplify their digital strategies, and embrace advanced automation and security measures. However, these rapid advancements also bring new competitors such as cloud providers, OTT platforms, and infrastructure powerhouses. Additionally, the capital-intensive nature of areas like 5G rollout and fiber expansion further complicates matters.

Amidst these changes, the question arises: How can CSPs stay ahead and harness the potential of the digital boom? The answer lies in a definitive CEO Playbook that focuses on three pivotal axes: Simplify, Modernize, and Monetize.

The Playbook Unfolded

  1. Simplify: Before innovation can take place, simplification is necessary. The industry is often burdened by legacy systems and complex operational structures. Unlocking capital becomes the first priority. Simplifying processes and streamlining operations not only frees up investments but also enables agile decision-making and faster time-to-market.
  2. Modernize: With the capital and resources generated from simplification, the next step is modernization. It involves more than just integrating the latest technology; it requires evolving the core of the business. CSPs must transition from a traditional telco to a techco – from mere communication facilitators to technology innovators. This includes embracing cloud infrastructures, implementing AI-driven processes, and digitizing both B2B and consumer-facing aspects of their operations.
  3. Monetize: The culmination of simplification and modernization is the creation of robust monetization avenues. By capitalizing on their revamped operations and the power of their networks, CSPs can tap into previously untapped revenue streams. This sets the stage for sustainable profitability in an ever-evolving market.

Pivoting with Precision

Transitioning with such a strategic approach necessitates profound changes at various levels:

  • People: Cultivating a mindset that values innovation and agility is crucial. Teams need to be equipped with skills that align with the demands of modern digital enterprises.
  • Process: Implementing flexible workflows, promoting cross-functional collaboration, and championing co-creation are essential to ensure processes align with market demands.
  • Technology: Prioritizing investments in modular, cloud-native platforms, fostering internal research and development, and making technology choices that drive real-world business outcomes are key.

In conclusion, the journey from being a “telco” to a “techco” is challenging for CSPs. However, with a clear playbook that focuses on simplifying complexity, modernizing outdated practices, and creating new avenues for monetization, CSPs can not only navigate but also lead in this digital era. The horizon is vast and promising, urging us to take action, evolve, and redefine the future.

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