4 minute read 5 Apr 2021
Handsome man taking notes and looking at laptop

How telecoms are transformed to build the network of the future

By Tom Loozen

EY Global Telecommunications Leader

Fascinated by the positive impact of telecoms. Passionate musician. Enjoys educating himself on psychology, wine, sports, technology, arts and much more. Husband and father of three daughters.

4 minute read 5 Apr 2021
Related topics TMT Telecommunications

We’re potentially in one of the most exciting periods of time for telecommunications businesses since the internet began. 

This article is part of the EY NextWave Telecommunications Journal

In brief:
  • Broader demand for telco services is increasing and going beyond connectivity.
  • Capital allocation, planning and deploying quality, resilient networks at low cost to drive strong returns is critical.

Amid the COVID-19 global pandemic, we’ve entered an age of digital opportunity – and the time to act is now.

When the pandemic first impacted the world, telcos quickly discovered that many of the drastic, accelerated decisions they were taking to support both employees and customers actually worked flawlessly. They learned that they could do things in new ways to realize new efficiencies and that there were longer-term benefits to be realized, too.

Some of the main benefits came from updating operating models. Today, most networks use specific equipment from a specific vendor, with many people assigned to operate them. However, it’s been possible for some time to establish the network as a combination of physical computers and cables – and add the intelligence via software that runs in the cloud. While this approach already existed, the pandemic restrictions on working from the office, and large, unexpected changes in traffic that required immediate action made operators move faster in upgrading their networks, making them software-defined.

More operators are also now acting on the opportunities that machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) offer – not only reducing the time and cost associated with human input, but strongly increasing quality, too. Whether this is applied in planning, running or securing the networks, it frees up skilled employees to move the business forward, reduces costs and increases customer service. Additionally, traditional infrastructure investment plans, often only reviewed annually are now being assessed monthly – helping to match supply with ever-shifting demand and improve ROI.

In parallel, telcos have experienced broader demand for services. The need for high-speed, reliable, secure connectivity and cloud solutions has soared. However, telcos are now being asked to increase their service offering beyond connectivity. They’re being asked to provide security and act as the systems integrator that will work with partners to deliver end-to-end solutions, over both fixed and mobile networks.

While these positive changes are happening, the investment required to adapt and expand the networks – including the full rollout of 5G – means the percentage of revenue being invested continues to increase. There’s now a critical need to ensure that these investments are made precisely and lead to the strongest returns. There’s an art to how you allocate capital, how you plan, deploy and run a resilient network with quality, at low cost, and how you drive strong returns – and this is where we can help.

EY can provide operators with the complementary skills and assets to maximize their return on network investment. We know the insights you need to make informed executive investment decisions. We can support you to plan a network for maximum financial returns. And we understand network investments, changing customer needs and relevant use cases due to our extensive relationships across all industry sectors. We can also advise on how to deploy your networks with rigor, speed and quality, at the lowest possible cost – delivering a resilient, secure network that reaches further and supports the deployment of 5G-based IoT and edge cloud solutions.

To read more about Future Network Now take a look at the full NextWave Journal (pdf)

Summary

With these challenges, opportunities and capabilities in mind, we have developed Future Network Now, a solution set designed to help you with your priority issues. Future Network Now brings together our deep skills and knowledge in financial decision-making, AI, asset management, technology and security. It’s a solution set that’s complemented by our ecosystem of trusted partners, offering deep knowledge across the aspects of the network that matter most.

About this article

By Tom Loozen

EY Global Telecommunications Leader

Fascinated by the positive impact of telecoms. Passionate musician. Enjoys educating himself on psychology, wine, sports, technology, arts and much more. Husband and father of three daughters.

Related topics TMT Telecommunications