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Yankee Research Highlights Product Management Weakness in CSPs
New report commissioned by Tribold highlights an urgent need to optimize current practices

London, UK, 12 April 2007: The seismic shift in customer demand for new personalized services is exposing major weaknesses in the product management (PM) strategies of major communications services providers (CSP), according to new Yankee Group research launched today. The report highlights a massively fragmented PM environment where responsibilities are blurred, current tools are ‘often simplistic and, at worst, amateurish’, and reliance on manual processes can double product launch timescales.

Commissioned by Tribold and conducted by Yankee Group, the Serving Generation Me: Why Product Management Needs to Work Smarter report gathered in depth data and responses on current PM strategies of global communications service providers.

The report concludes that to meet the increasingly high expectations of an ever more disloyal subscriber base, and to stave off competition from the new generation of Web 2.0 companies such as Google and Skype, CSPs must move from a network-centric view of the world, and embrace the best traits of FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) companies. Automated PM solutions, the research asserts, could be the catalyst in fundamentally changing this behavior.

Key challenges highlighted by Yankee Group, include:

- CSPs have to work harder than Web 2.0 companies to win and retain customers. Social networking sites are free to the user, CSPs require individuals to invest in their products, so want more choice and flexibility
- Personalization for the ‘Generation Me’ market creates a more complex PM environment, with new demands on customer segmentation, the ability to mix, match and bundle across different product types, and a need for faster service delivery to address rapid changes in demand
- Most CSPs understand PM in general terms, but fail to appreciate how deeply shifts in market demand for products can expose serious weaknesses in current PM strategies
- Responsibility for PM is fractured and few CSPs have a single owner. The lack of a central view, combined with poor tools and manual processes, can increase product time to launch by up to 80%

Key opportunities highlighted by Yankee Group, include:

- Commercial, off-the shelf PM systems create a centralized product catalog, delivering a single authoritative and accurate data repository for all types of product intelligence
- A single product catalog enables CSPs to accurately analyze the profitability of their products and enables effective information management, sharing and product management agility
- Automated PM can reduce the risk of new product deployment, bring swifter time to market and lower operational costs
- Efficient PM solutions will enable CSPs to adopt best traits of FMCG sector, focusing effort on analyzing consumer trends to define and sell profitable products, and moving CSPs to a customer-centric view of the world

“Our research found that the current crop of product management processes and technologies employed by the majority of CSPs are ill-equipped to deal with the increasing demand of today’s converged environment,” said Camille Mendler, Vice President, International Telecoms Strategies at Yankee Group. “With the growing threat of dynamic Web 2.0 companies, and the need to retain advantage over traditional telecommunications competitors, product management is now firmly on the board room agenda, and investment in new automated, centralized solutions is assured.”

“The Yankee Group report strongly supports our own experience that communications service providers are struggling to manage the thousands of disparate product and service bundles in their networks,” said Simon Muderack, CEO of Tribold. “The report paints an accurate picture of the lack of effective product management severely impacting an operator’s ability to create, manage and deploy new revenue generating services. Set against this background, the need to develop a single view of all product data through a single enterprise catalog is

Publisher Contact Information:

0845 3700655

Company profile of Tribold
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