Cost Effective Customization: The New Holy Grail
Summits zero in on how service providers can give customers more choice and control
London, 5 November, 2014: Both communications and financial service providers are wrestling with the challenge of giving customers greater control and choice, without increasing costs and complexity, according to participants in a series of Juliet Leadership Summits in Atlanta, San Francisco and Amsterdam. While the debates at the SunTec-hosted events signalled that mass customisation is an idea whose time has come, delegates identified several key barriers.
In Europe, in particular, executives from both communications and financial service providers highlighted the need for a cultural shift to focus on building long- term relationships with customers, rather than maximising the next quarter’s financial results. In North America, much of the debate revolved around how to implement greater customisation in a way that doesn’t confuse customers and increase service providers’ costs and exposure to risks. Featuring senior executives from world-leading service providers, including AT&T, ING, Level 3, Orange and Verizon, the innovative summits mixed interactive presentations with panel discussions, brainstorming sessions and quantitative and qualitative surveys.
Many participants felt that service providers need to raise their game. For example, delegates in Atlanta awarded North American communications service providers (CSPs) an average score of 5.53 for customization of their propositions in the consumer market on a scale of 1-10. The equivalent score in Amsterdam for European CSPs was 5.2 and for financial service providers 4.4. In Amsterdam, 30% of delegates predicted CSPs will make major progress on customisation in the next three years, whereas only 19% said financial service providers will make major progress in the same timeframe.
“The lively exchange of views at the summits should make a valuable contribution to the internal debates service providers are having about how to offer greater customisation without damaging the bottom line,” said Michael Barrell, Managing Director of Juliet Media. “Delegates confronted an array of thorny challenges related to culture, transparency, complexity and legacy IT systems that are making it hard for service providers to offer their customers exactly what they want.”
Participants suggested several different solutions to these challenges, such as quickly testing new service concepts and propositions on a small scale without impacting the core business. Rather than ripping out their core systems, some speakers argued that service providers need to supplement their existing IT with flexible, automated platforms that enable small companies to address specific customers’ needs and add value to the service provider’s primary offering.
Notes to editors
Juliet Media organised the invitation-only summits on mass customisation in Atlanta on October 7th, San Francisco on October 9th and Amsterdam on October 14th. The summits, which were hosted by SunTec and supported by the TM Forum and Level 3, were attended by scores of senior executives from communications and financial service providers.
About Juliet Media
Juliet Media works with B2B companies in the digital and communications sectors. On behalf of our clients, we fully leverage digital media, as well as providing a wide range of marketing and PR services to generate leads and nurture prospects and existing customers. Juliet strongly believes in the vertical integration of digital publishing and content creation, and we own and operate a leading publisher in our sector – Telcoprofessionals.com.
SunTec Business Solutions is the leading provider of revenue management and business assurance solutions to financial services and digital and communications services industries. With deployments in 58 countries, an end-to-end revenue management solution and an award-winning product suite, SunTec is a trusted partner of the world’s leading service providers like VISA Europe, HSBC, ING, Mashreq, Cable One, KPN, Bakrie Telecom and Arval. SunTec has an 800+ workforce with its headquarters in India and offices in USA, UK, Germany, UAE and Singapore.