With the economy in the tank, cost-saving initiatives may encourage corporations to consider telcos as resources for managed services

July 16, 2008

2 Min Read
Telco Managed Services Opportunities

We all know the global economy is in the tank. Everyone – personally and professionally – is cutting expenses. Can this situation actually be an opportunity knocking on the telcos' doors? Will cost saving initiatives encourage corporations to consider telcos as resources for managed services? There's a compelling case for telcos' approach to managed services.

Telcos approach managed services from a different direction than their IT competitors. Building from their fundamental expertise, telcos approach the world of information and communications technology (ICT) from their communications heritage. With multinational corporations looking to optimize IT performance at as low a cost as possible, telcos have the expertise necessary to help link enterprise resources to each other as well as to host and manage the applications in a globally consistent manner.

As carriers prepared to bring next-generation services to market, they recognized the need to built processing-centric nodes throughout their networks. Carriers use these facilities not just to manage their own ICT needs, but use them to provide hosting, collocation, content distribution, and other IT focused applications. Over the last few years, most of the major carriers have acquired or built professional services groups. At some of the carrier organizations – e.g., AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), KT Corp. , Telia Company – these groups report into and are functionally integrated with the divisions that provide business services. That set up enables carriers to provide enterprise customers with "virtualized" ICT services on a consistent and global basis.

Additionally, the first functional enterprise-aimed next generation services provide hybrid PBX applications – e.g., BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA), Salt SA , Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ). In this way, an enterprise can leverage telcos' network-resident processing to extend its PBX functions to employees all around the world. Mobile callers can access their enterprise PBX functions through their wireless phones to make voice and data calls just as they would in the office. The services also support wireless to wired phone handoffs. Enterprises looking to carriers to facilitate global PBX functions as well as distributed applications management will find the carriers equally well equipped to provide both capabilities.

Enterprise managers that exploit telcos' network-resident platforms may be able to increase their ICT capabilities, better manage their expenses and provide global applications access to their users.

Over the next few years, telcos will continue to invest in IT hardware and software capacity to meet and increase customer demand. That creates a growth opportunity for traditional and emerging platform suppliers.

— H. Paris Burstyn, Senior Analyst, Heavy Reading

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