Network operators may reduce network operations costs by up to 65% using automation at the IP domain layer. Analysys Mason partnered with Nokia to conduct in depth operator interviews to reach this conclusion. In this article, we discuss our recommendations for operators looking to improve their operational efficiency, reduce costs, or considering future network-slicing based operations. This article is the third in a series that complement a webinar and published report where the research is explained in greater detail.
Operators should automate the network management processes for their IP services
Our study found there are clear benefits to operations from network automation at the domain layer. Our model estimates that a large, regional operator can avoid up to a 65% of costs across service fulfilment, network lifecycle management and network and service assurance processes. Our previous blogs outlined the scale of these benefits across each process category.
Operators can achieve these cost avoidance benefits by reducing labour time needed to complete repetitive manual processes. Network automation further reduces the human element, and the frequency of human error and other errors such as order fallout that require repeated work. Network automation will also benefit the operators’ agility, enabling the operator to react faster to customer demand – reducing the time-to-revenue – resolve network issues and faults quicker, and improve the mean-time-to-repair. Further benefits come from equipment efficiency (capex) and customer satisfaction (churn), among others; these benefits prove tricky to quantify and differ drastically by operator.
Operators may look to implement network automation in a staggered approach to realise the immediate benefits
The benefits from network automation will develop over time, as operators implement the automation and refine the processes. Operators may pick and choose where automation is deployed first, based on the expected benefits and ease of implementation. Our interviews suggested most operators start with specific use cases: one such operator focused on automated troubleshooting and triage as part of automating the network and service assurance processes.
In Figure 1, we demonstrate how an operator may realise these benefits over a three-year period as they gradually implement network automation
Figure 1: Cumulative cost avoidance from network automation over a three-year period, by process category