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Communications Reimagined
Industry insights for 5G evolution and transforming digital experience.

Open APIs and standards drive agile service and network orchestration

Azhar Mirza
Group Vice President at Oracle Communications Applications

In a recent blog post by Jason Rutherford, he looked at how automation and process integration in the back office is contributing to service providers remaining fully functional, responsive, and available 24x7 during these times of remote operations. Going forward, agility and adaptability will be critical to both service providers and their enterprise customers as they respond to changing conditions globally. That will require the utmost flexibility in OSS/BSS to accommodate the spikes and drops in network traffic, data, roaming, and remote capabilities, while also maintaining a consistent customer experience.

The ability to stand up virtual call centers on demand, or to quickly change remote and/or mobile access to apps and web sites, as well as offers and tiers of service, will require a digitized back office that is based on open APIs. Open APIs bring interoperability and seamless end-to-end management of complex digital services. For that reason, we recently obtained TM Forum certification for two open APIs in our Service and Network Orchestration (SNO) solution (part of Oracle 5G Now). This will help service providers manage resource and service inventory across traditional, 5G, IoT and digital services, responding to changing demands for access and speed in business and consumer services.

By incorporating open APIs —TMF638 for service inventory management and TMF639 for resource inventory management —service providers will more readily manage the full lifecycle of customer services and resources across hybrid virtual/physical networks, which includes:

  • customer orders across multiple billing and fulfillment stacks
  • B2B and B2C orders for services enabled by mobile and fixed networks
  • inventory of record and network buildouts for all technologies

These open APIs will be increasingly important to the agility and scale required to fulfill and manage services, and they will ensure a consistent experience-driven customer engagement remains intact, even if offers, tiers of service, and billing must suddenly change.

This is particularly true in the area of “intelligent inventory,” which fuels modern-day activation, fulfillment and orchestration, providing a unified view of customer services and all associated resources. The Oracle Communications Unified Inventory Management (UIM) lies at the heart of our SNO solution and because it is a vendor-agnostic, API-based architecture—built on TM Forum's Information Framework (SID)—it can work cooperatively with existing inventory systems or replace them to support complex inventory-related business processes and technologies.

That’s true across both physical resources (racks, shelves, cards, ports, and connectors) and logical resources (network addresses, and telephone numbers), offering service providers flexible deployment and integration options. It also ensures connectivity among an ever-expanding web of devices and locations, as well as robust modeling of networks and topology in times of fluctuating capacity needs.

Oracle continues to be a member of TM Forum to ensure we continue to advance open APIs, industry best practices and standards. To learn more about modernizing to further essential apps and services, download the eBook, Modernizing CSP Back-Office Operations with Agility, Cost and Control, and watch TM Forum’s Hard Talk: Digital experiences are the new normal. Can telcos deliver?

 

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