Best Practices for Network Operators to Strengthen Relationships with ACPs

Next Generation Communications Blog

Best Practices for Network Operators to Strengthen Relationships with ACPs

By Susan J. Campbell

The environment for the network operator is changing as consumer demands are changing. Relationships with application content providers (ACPs) are morphing from distant functionality to arm's-length collaboration to drive value in the market. It is essential for network operators to strengthen these relationships, although it can be a challenge.

To overcome challenges to building relationships, Alcatel-Lucent has some keen advice for developing best practices in strengthening these relationships and maximizing market opportunities. Such practices will demand change, but the change is very doable and will deliver measurable results.

First, the network operator should build a holistic financial case for investment. While this may seem like an obvious move, it is not always a priority and can dilute the value the ACP can contribute to the overall goal when it is not developed. There are a number of different options for building the right case and these options are not as important as the case itself.

Second, the network operator should explore new business models. Alcatel-Lucent has identified five main business models that are increasingly being adopted to address application opportunity. These different business models include operator led, aggregator, mass wholesale, trusted partner and enterprise customer.

Third, it is important to industrialize the processes. Network operators rely on systems that are efficient and scalable to ensure success. They also need to support
rapid, flexible and cost-effective application enablement. With industrialized processes and support systems, the network operator can support a large volume of applications and adapt quickly to changing patterns and niche customer segments.

Finally, the network operator needs to lessen fragmentation to achieve scale. When standardization is increased across network providers, network operators can impact the number of users that can be reached. This improves outcomes and revenues for all involved, building on the value of the overall relationship with the ACP.


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