Where Is My Network? The 3 Must-Haves of Every FMS Tool

June 19, 2016

You ever stop to think of all the data that exists within a service provider’s (SP’s) entire operation and business system environment?  The amount of info about the geographic footprint, services, subscribers, employees, work force, overhead, process management, headend equipment, CPE, etc. (I could go on but you get the point!) is an amazing, even staggering data set.  If that data is harnessed effectively, SPs have access to an arsenal of information that can help solve daily operational challenges and result in more efficient processes – which we know leads to better customer satisfaction and higher retention rates.

By far the two most valuable data sets to every SP are (1) the folks paying you for your services…the subscribers (2) and the physical network that enables these services.  And of course, you OSP folks out there are thinking, “We don’t have subscribers without the network!”

I could focus this piece on the OSP folks that design and manage their service provider (SP) network, but this topic affects all aspects of your business because of its importance to keeping a healthy subscriber-base.

Design and Track Tools

It is imperative that you are able to both view and design your network from the same software tool.  This is completely achievable through the most recent GIS platforms on the market.  Your ability to track deployed plant inventory and trace routes between network points for troubleshooting.  The OSP team will need this info

Cost Estimation and Capacity Planning Tools

The software tool that allows you to design and track your network also needs to offer the ability to estimate the cost of future build-outs. A large part of your business growth will be tied to moving into new geographic areas that will require more network infrastructure and construction costs.  Additionally, you will need to track these per project and per item. Your end goal is to map the subscriber opportunities that will be created so that you can provide ROI and monetization estimates with your itemized network costs.

Seamless Integration for Address Point Management

Your fiber management system is not just a stand-alone software solution – it should flow to the rest of your business and operational systems.  With the GIS solutions available today, your business can plot your address points, homes passed and all subscribers in your service provider footprint.  These points have to be considered not only in your network design, but also through your built-out analysis.  Make it part of your process to start your address point management in the OSP software design tool and have it flow through and pre-populate your B/OSS, CRM or your chosen subscriber management system.  This will eliminate redundant data and swivel-chair processes when mining and deploying new subscribers and services.

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