To remain a successful communications service provider (CSP), your telecom product and service offerings have to keep up with the demands of your customers and prospective customers alike. That means regularly delivering new services to ensure they stay satisfied and loyal to your brand.
Of course, there’s a caveat to this need for forward progress — unless you keep some best practices in mind, the releases may fail to have the positive impact you were hoping for. With that said, here are five approaches to new service offering rollouts that can keep you on the right track.
1. Have a strong, collaborative product plan
When designing a new telecom service offering, it always pays to create a detailed plan that includes collaborative input and a clear desired outcome. Deloitte pointed out that the next-generation service offerings set to appeal to enterprise customers in the years ahead will largely be developed collaboratively. An agile development plan that lets multiple groups collaborate, and incorporate the voice of the customer, is a modern approach to rolling out offerings.
Embracing agility and feedback is a way to sidestep a classic problem that could afflict waterfall development: releasing a labored-over product and then discovering it’s not what customers want or need. Regardless of the initial internal design, user experience feedback and collaboration throughout the process can help improve the final service offering and achieve better results.
2. Master the QA process
Ideally, you should be continually thinking about the quality of the experience when launching a new product. Consumer expectations have shifted, as they are no longer interested merely shrugging off the service delays and hiccups that used to be considered “the cost of doing business.”
The focus of the development process is to make sure you are meeting the business needs of your customers and building the desired product accurately, while ensuring the highest quality and ease of use. Rather than simply testing software on its way out the door, quality assurance should be integrated into every step along the development process.
3. Ensure accurate billing from day one
Your billing process must suit the nature of your service offering. While there are a wide variety of factors affecting your customers’ relationship with your products and services, billing is the one that will have a direct impact.
No one wants surprise charges or an opaque payment process. Customers just want to know what they’re being billed for and be able to pay with no hindrances or glitches.
Using the right telecom billing platform is the way to make sure your capabilities are up to expectations in this area. Whether your new service is priced at a flat monthly fee, billed by usage or offered in tiers, you need a solution that will create accurate invoices, as well as support the myriad of rating, billing and taxing options your offerings require.
4. Automate operational processes wherever possible
Running an efficient organization means fewer manual processes. Becoming the kind of fully featured CSP customers are looking for means managing more digital solutions and internal processes than employees can efficiently deal with on their own.
Trends in telecommunications have made this push for automation inevitable. Customers are demanding new services that reflect their increasing data demands. Competition is heating up from new and legacy CSPs. Profit margins are tight. Being lean and effective enough to thrive in this market requires strengthening internal workflows. That, in turn, means automation. Faster release times, more reliable processes and fewer headaches all contribute towards a more streamlined and effortless approach for your team.
5. Optimize every step of the customer experience
Your new telecommunications solutions should be technologically sound, calculated to fit users’ needs and developed in line with cutting-edge agile principles. While your team is focusing on all of these priorities, they can’t forget to tune the customer experience.
CMSWire noted that for years, telecommunications customers faced dissatisfying and disappointing experiences, even from the biggest national CSPs. Breaking out of this pack and delivering a high degree of usability can make your new product offering stand out. Communication and direct engagement matter when pursuing this goal.
When you’re working on setting the tone for customer interactions, billing is pivotal. For many telecom customers, their monthly bill is their primary – and often only – point of contact with service providers. So, punctual and accurate billing is essential to the customer experience. In addition, a flexible billing portal provides a major boost to your company’s convenience and user-friendliness.
Give your new service the best chance to succeed
When you approach a new service rollout with the right combination of strategy and technology, the expansion of your offerings can become a simple and seamless part of operations. It’s important that you take this leap, because operating as a CSP in the digital era necessitates constant evolution.
Relying on a comprehensive billing, automation and workflow solution is an essential component of the foundation for every new service you launch. To secure a trusted partner that can help you quickly transform your ideas into growth, talk to IDI Billing Solutions today.