Telecommunication is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world. Over the last decade, the global telecommunications market has seen a significant increase in investment and growth. With the economic recovery gaining steam and many businesses and governments trying to return to pre-pandemic levels, the Covid-19 pandemic presented a wide range of challenges and opportunities for the telecom industry. Irrespective of the disruptions prompted by the pandemic, telecoms have benefited from the unexpected surge in digital connectivity along with increased bandwidth-heavy activities like remote learning, gaming, and videoconferencing.
The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrated that Internet connectivity is a vital lifeline keeping businesses, governments, and communities connected. It also revealed that millions living in rural and remote areas lack access to high-speed internet and affordable services, prompting governments to invest billions in closing the digital divide.
Despite the growth trajectory, government incentives, and broadband funding, the telecommunications industry faces new challenges – Inflation.
Inflation seems to be all over the news today. There are many reasons why inflation is soaring; record low-interest rates, unprecedented levels of government stimulus spending, a hot real estate market, increased costs of living, and global supply chain disruptions.
Even with the increased demand for high-speed data services and network expansion, telecom providers are not immune to inflation. Instead, they are now facing inflationary pressures scrambling to deal with rising commodity prices, supply constraints, and higher wages caused by labor shortages. The impact of inflation on the telecom industry may seem insignificant in the short term, given recent growth. However, inflation could cause severe problems for any business. Understanding the economic conditions that could affect your industry will help evaluate your company’s risks.
Finding ways to increase efficiency and reduce operating costs will help alleviate some inflationary pressures. In this blog post, we have assembled some ways that Internet Service Providers can combat inflation and implement measures that will help minimize risk.
Manual billing can take a lot of time and can require multiple billing admins, especially if your ISP has numerous billing cycles. Automating billing is one way to save time during the day, month, or year. When you remove human error from your billing system, you can also bill your customers more accurately, resulting in increased revenue. Using Sonar, you can automatically calculate billing due dates, transaction amounts, prorated amounts, invoice generation, late fees, and account delinquency.
Check out more ways you can manage timely and accurate billing with automation ⬇️
Maintaining customer payments and ensuring credit cards are updated before they expire can lead to ongoing communication and account delinquency. Having a customer portal that your customers can access and manage their payments is critical in reducing unnecessary support tickets and will free up internal resources. Sonar provides a fully customizable customer portal that can be deployed and maintained automatically.
Learn how to increase customer satisfaction by using a customer portal ⬇️
Service Bundles & Pricing
During inflation, cost increases are expected, but sticker shock is the last thing we suggest when trying to attract or retain customers. Instead, there are creative ways to offer value to existing and potential customers by reevaluating your service plans to create attractive packages by bundling low-profit services with other higher-profit offerings. Revisiting your pricing structure and current service offerings can help increase ARPU and keep your customers happy without significant price increases.
Click here for ideas on how to structure your bundles to increase ARPU ⬇️
Proactively Monitor your Network
Network reliability and excellent customer service are keys to customer retention. Proactively monitoring your network is the best way to prevent equipment failures, unplanned downtime, and network outages. But when incidents arise, it is imperative to act swiftly to avoid an increase in support tickets and unhappy customers. With Sonar’s network monitoring feature, you can accelerate the resolution of network outages and improve the consistency and accuracy of your network problem-solving with end-to-end visibility and analytics of network infrastructure.
Learn more tips on managing network incidents ⬇️
Streamline Customer Support
Labor shortages are one of the main issues Internet Service Providers face during inflation, and finding and retaining great customer support agents can take time and effort. Simplifying ticket interactions by automatically sorting and filtering your tickets can save an absorbent amount of time and eliminate unnecessary triaging. The Sonar ticketing feature is built for efficiency; call logs can be escalated to tickets, you can automate ticket assignment, and tickets can be linked to service calls for faster resolution. Using the sonar interface, simplify tier 1 and tier 2 troubleshooting outcomes and visualize connected device relationships and hierarchies between CPE access points, network site switches, and backhaul infrastructure.
Here are some pro tips on how to streamline your customer support ⬇️
Inventory & Procurement Visibility
With supply chain disruptions, it is vital to keep track of inventory and eliminate off-budget spending. Using a centralized platform to manage inventory and purchase orders will help you to gain better visibility of undeployed inventory, increase cost awareness and check RMA status. By leveraging Sonar’s inventory and purchase order feature, you can trigger automatic inventory replenishment alerts when inventory reaches a minimum threshold level, access the historical performance of customer equipment, or view failed and deployed items or filter devices made by a specific manufacturer with our real-time search function.
Learn how to gain better visibility and reduce waste with real-time business intelligence inventory reporting ⬇️
Make Informed Business Decisions
In the telecom industry, data-driven optimization is rapidly gaining traction. However, many Internet Service Providers are still siloing data, using spreadsheets to track finances, field service, and inventory, resulting in inaccurate reporting and insights. Leveraging Business Intelligence simplifies how you view your data and provides invaluable information to help you make better business decisions, which is imperative during inflation. With Sonar BI reporting, you can leverage data points specific to your business to visualize actionable insights to boost profitability and take advantage of potential opportunities.
See how Business Intelligence insights can transform your business here ⬇️
We hope you found some of these ideas helpful in navigating inflation. While there is no magic formula to dodging inflation, leveraging automation and centralizing your operations can help reduce dependency on multiple software programs and eliminate the need for additional staff internally.
Schedule a demo if you want to see how Sonar is helping Internet Service providers automate and scale their business.