In today's increasingly competitive market and rapidly changing technological landscape, maximizing business efficiency and agility is crucial to service providers' long-term success. In the service fulfillment space, this means having the ability to quickly and efficiently design and fulfill new and innovative services. It is no longer sufficient merely to meet customer expectations - it is now necessary to exceed them.
This is not very straightforward in today's complex multivendor and multitechnology environment; service providers must assign and prioritize work queues across disparate organizations and disjointed supply chains and then have to manage real-time dependencies and rollback scenarios. Service providers must also control and manage the associated inventory - from the physical network resources utilized across multiple domains to the logical services and subscribers supported by them. The entire process of order fulfillment, from validation of the order to billing for the service, is intensive and time-consuming.
Service providers need a solution that overcomes these challenges - one that facilitates innovation, agility, and responsiveness, and the ability rapidly to introduce new or to modify existing services. Having the ability to efficiently manage the end-to-end fulfillment of orders with better visibility and control over the associated processes, as well as keeping customers informed along the way, are also crucial.
Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment Product Overview
Cisco Prime™ Order Fulfillment offers a modular and automated approach for bringing together the people, processes, and products required to accelerate the discovery, assembly, launch, and orchestration of new services across multiple domains.
Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment utilizes service creation tools to formally define processes and handoffs, and automates tasks wherever possible. It reviews service orders involved and automates their separation so that suborders are automatically generated and sent to each of the technology domains involved for processing. Additionally, services are assembled quickly and efficiently through reusable building blocks from discovered resource capabilities. The result is a flexible service creation, assembly, and delivery model that efficiently coordinates and analyzes the end-to-end fulfillment process to increase revenue, reduce operating expenses, and improve customer satisfaction.
Established on a standards-based, catalog-driven service delivery model, Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment accelerates the design and fulfillment of services. Services are composed of components available from multiple suppliers and provided "on demand" and "at scale" in a multitenant, elastic environment.
• Design: Provides entire lifecycle management of technical service products that utilize the full value of the underlying multitechnology, multivendor network. Using the TM Forum's Product and Service Assembly (PSA) standard (TMF287), the solution discovers and catalogs resource-facing capabilities from participating technology domains, assembles them into viable product bundles, and exposes these products to customer-facing ordering systems.
• Fulfillment: Receives and dismantles technical service orders into their constituent parts and orchestrates delivery of each constituent to the appropriate technology domains. The solution manages cross-domain order fulfillment processes. It also tracks and analyzes relevant network, service, and customer information to help ensure end-to-end service quality and customer satisfaction to both residential and business consumers.
Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment:
• Increases revenues by accelerating the design, assembly, and launch of new products
• Extends the service provider product portfolio to expand market penetration, increase service revenue, and help enable products to be easily improved throughout their full lifecycle
• Synchronizes network capabilities with customer needs to avoid disjointed service offerings
• Reduces cost by automatically breaking down orders into constituent parts and orchestrating the fulfillment of these parts across multiple technology domains
• Minimizes order processing overhead to reduce operational expenses
• Increases profit and service value through analysis of product and service performance
• Improves customer experience through automated monitoring and control of delivered services
• Increases customer satisfaction through the ability to offer a more comprehensive product portfolio
• Matches front office promises to back office capabilities to better meet customer expectations
The following are components of Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment:
• Discovery: Automatically discovers capabilities from multiple domains and multivendor suppliers
• Assembly: Uses Cisco® componentization principles to decouple product lifecycle management from underlying systems and publishes them as technical product specifications. Tiered catalog layers are also supported
• Fulfill: Receives technical service orders from the customer relationship management (CRM)/portal, separates them, and orchestrates the requests to the appropriate "supplier" across internal domains and third-party business-to-business environments
• Business process definition: Creates comprehensive process definitions and individual work instructions across automated and manual workflows, including priorities, dependencies, and rollback scenarios
• Service delivery status: Processes, executes, and tracks orders across all activities in the service delivery process, including validation, enforcing, assigning, and building relevant resource models for subscriber, service, and network objects
• Field extensibility: Provides flexible, open interfaces to help enable operators to create and modify service workflows
• Resource management: Manages all the resources required for the service delivery process and models service context of network elements, including both physical and logical
• Visualization: Provides easy-to-navigate hierarchical and topology views showing correlation of subscribers to services and services to network equipment. Dashboard capabilities give visibility into open orders and their status and can be used to monitor use of assets, services, and other entities; analyze orders processed by internal and external delivery chains; and track metrics for key service delivery business attributes
• Discovery: Automatically identifies and catalogs network elements as well as confirms the existence of expected resources in the network
• Assembly and publication: Assembles components into viable product bundles and publishes them to customer-facing ordering systems
• Reconciliation: Supports manually or automatically triggered reconciliation between discovered and stored data
Use Case Example: Simplified Cross-Domain Video Services Fulfillment
Traditionally, service providers must compile and integrate service components across domains to create new services, a process that commonly takes from 12 to 18 months. In addition, when a new service order is received, it must be manually reviewed, dismantled into its various service components, and used to generate suborders to each domain "supplier". In this case, one simple order could result in several suborders being manually placed on the collaboration, cloud, transport, access, and customer premises equipment domain suppliers. Any notification or reworks must be handled manually as well.
With Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment, the entire delivery process can be handled automatically, including validation, enforcing, assigning, and building relevant resource models for subscriber, service, and network objects. On the design side, supplier domains manage their individual business processes and interfaces through a componentized model to provide a predictable delivery mechanism for their services. The business silo then has full control over the publication of its services to be automatically discovered by Active Catalog and added to cross-domain catalogs. Comprehensive rules manage factors such as which services are dependent upon others and which must be excluded when others are being applied. These services can then be quickly assembled into viable product bundles and published through a third-party customer-facing ordering system where they can be ordered by customers. As a result, services are created in substantially less time. (See Figure 1).
Figure 1. Video Services Fulfillment
On the fulfillment side, Active Catalog receives technical service orders from the CRM/portal, automatically dismantles them, and then orchestrates the requests through the catalog hierarchy to the appropriate "supplier" domains. With this approach, if any component of a service changes, these changes are automatically carried into the fulfillment process. (See Figure 2).
Figure 2. Video Service Fulfillment with Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment and Video Service Fulfillment Business Process Flow
Services are then fulfilled and monitored using Cisco Prime Order Management and Cisco Prime Service Inventory. These tools process detailed order workflows and service resources while handling requests and responses to and from the various network management systems (NMSs) and OSSs, including verifying service feasibility (for example, bandwidth and other factors), allocating and provisioning resources, configuring assurance to check service, setting up billing for the service, and handling all notifications and reworks. By automating the entire business process flow and eliminating manual processes, Cisco Prime Order Fulfillment substantially accelerates time to revenue.
About Cisco Prime
The Cisco Prime portfolio of enterprise and service provider management offerings empowers organizations to more effectively manage their networks and the services they deliver. Built on a service-centered foundation, Cisco Prime supports integrated lifecycle management through an intuitive workflow-oriented user experience - providing A-to-Z management for IP next-generation networks, mobility, video, and managed services.