Andrew Palmer

Andrew Palmer

Director Consulting Expert

Earlier this month I had the pleasure of attending Digital Transformation World in Nice, along with my colleague Alan Nunn.

Digital Transformation World is the headline event of the TeleManagement Forum (TMF or TM Forum) and attracts over 3000 business and technology professionals from over 600 companies from more than 110 countries. As well as this large body of attendees, well over 200 speakers from within the industry take part in a series of themed presentations, panels and Q&A sessions. They all participate in three immersive days of knowledge-sharing and collaboration, looking to spark the innovation and inspiration necessary to lead and deliver transformation in telecoms and digital industries.

Alan and I had a lot of ground to cover but after three days of presentations, panels and meetings some stand-out themes were clear. Here are our top five:-

  1. TMF is 30 years old

Collaboration drives success and it’s important to have a clear North Star and purpose. Over the next three years the industry will need to focus on fixing fundamentals such as, time to market, cost and customer experience – especially to deliver 5G.  New forms of competition will emerge, and Communications Service Providers (CSPs) need to be faster and more responsive. The story of the last  thirty years was the journey to the hyper-connected world, the next will be the story of the hyper-intelligent world.

  1. The use of TMF APIs

This was an extensive theme throughout the conference; TMF have been successful in pushing this to both CSPs and vendors and they are now starting to be adopted within tenders to shorten delivery timescales. Also in terms of zero touch partnering, by using Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) rather than detailed contract negotiations, a new and more agile way of procuring can be adopted. Seven out of ten CSPs are now mandating Open APIs in their tenders.

  1. It’s all about Digital

TM Forum started their programme for transformation acceleration three years ago. The Digital Maturity Model is now seen as an industry-wide standard, but they have also developed programmes with industry for support of an Open Digital Architecture and an Open Digital Framework – a blueprint for working in partner ecosystems and developing new end to end operating models.

  1. Catalysts

These consist of co-working showcases of a specific use case, which are designed to exploit and extend the use of the TMF APIs as well as promote collaboration between CSPs, vendors, academia and end clients, including non-Telecoms companies. TM Forum sees the benefit in collaborative innovation and how it can be the key to creating a diverse ecosystem. TM Forum and IBC are now collaborating on joint Telco/Media catalysts and this programme also features Automotive and Manufacturing catalysts.

  1. Culture and diversity is critical

This is still a big challenge but an important one, however, CSPs have to work hard to attract new talent, some are re-branding to achieve this.

In summary - the next three years are critical. As the industry moves beyond the 5G hype to deliverable benefits and sustainable business models – 70% of the opportunities in 5G will require a new operating model for the CSP, which will undoubtedly be a digital operation model.

Did you attend the event? Share your thoughts. Contact me or leave a comment below.

About this author

Andrew Palmer

Andrew Palmer

Director Consulting Expert

Andrew has more than 30 years of experience in IT, Telecoms and TV and Media, having worked in various roles for IBM, AT&T, Ericsson, Motorola and Arris.