• A Lesson from the Telecommunications Industry

    The push toward faster, more efficient telecommunications has led to the adoption of a range of technologies that have become ubiquitous with modern business and personal lifestyles. This includes everything from digital communications and networking to everyday internet access. In order to continue developing and growing at a consistent rate, though, telecom providers need to stay focused on core competencies and consider other resources for related components and services.

    As consumer demand in this industry changes – something that can happen very rapidly – providers and carriers often scramble to keep up and over extend their capabilities. Carriers need to run a flawless nebs-compliant network and provide a great customer experience, but trying to do everything at once can be extremely difficult and could end up backfiring in the end.

    Focus On Core Competencies for Business Success

    The idea of limiting a business to its core competencies is nothing new, but often forgotten. It is, unfortunately, extremely easy to get distracted by the non-critical functions or excited about new developments when they could be handled by someone else. The hardest part of sticking to what you do best is when the third party vendors offer a poor solution to your problem. This is the most common time businesses are tempted to step outside their primary competencies and risk developing technology that may already have a viable working solution.

    Still, the research and development of new technologies can be attractive, and the opportunity to bring some manufacturing processes in-house can seem like a simple and obvious idea. Many companies have tried, and while sometimes it leads to some success, it has too much potential to divide your competencies – and your resources. A budget can only go so far, and so it is important to ask whether it is better spend on the proven elements of the company or if it’s really possible to spread it that much more.

    How is the Telecom Industry Reacting to Changes?

    M2M communications is forcing the telecom industry to change. Due to the increase in consumer electronics and the demand for constant connectivity, it has changed the way providers think about their services. Many existing Telco companies realize that building their own server and storage solutions is no longer a scalable plan of action, but are stuck with an outdated infrastructure. This is where research and partnerships with Original Equipment Manufacturers can be very beneficial to Telco companies. As data continues to grow many providers have realized they need the money they invested in building their own custom telco server and storage solution to help fund new research and development and would have been better off with a solution from a trusted provider.

    With exponential growth on the horizon telecom carriers are now looking for better scalable solutions to meet data demands. Proper scaling infrastructure in the carrier grade server, fiber optics, and storage market is as important as ever. Stand alone systems are no longer a viable option.  As more customers demand better coverage and constant service, it may be time to focus more on providing that service rather than the devices or the infrastructure.

    As an example, consider what happened during the last telecommunications boom back around 2000. A lot of companies started investing in fiber optic build-outs to deal with the predicted usage, but then the bubble burst, and many of those businesses ended up collapsing. Right now we’re seeing demand increase again because of the increased usage of data transfers and internet video. Many customers have simply started valuing data over voice, so this new push is meant to deal with expected growth. But the question has to be asked if this will once again prove to be an example of over extending past their core competencies.

    Building infrastructure doesn’t have to be done in-house. There are now a range of OEM solutions that provide certified and reliable options and support for those products. These providers could, for example, take advantage of an OEM’s preconfigured servers and maximize compatibility, scalability, and expandability. This can help lower expenses, improve profitability, and simplify operations. In other words, it is very possible for even telecommunications companies to leave the infrastructure to other companies while focusing on core competencies to better serve the customer.

    How does your business remain focused on what it does best? Share your tips in the comments.

    Jared Jacobs has professional and personal interests in technology. As an employee of Dell, he has to stay up to date on the latest innovations in large enterprise solutions and consumer electronics buying trends. Personally, he loves making additions to his media rooms and experimenting with surround sound equipment. He’s also a big Rockets and Texans fan.

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