In the ever-evolving world of telecommunications, billing is the backbone of revenue generation and customer satisfaction. However, as larger organisations seek to bundle billing within their service offerings, we highlight the importance of preserving telecoms billing as a standalone solution.
Furthermore, we delve into the reasons behind a growing trend where partners are shifting from bespoke solutions to a best-of-breed telecoms billing solution. We also provide insights on managing integrations effectively to streamline operations.
The All-in-One Dilemma: Sacrificing Specialisation for Convenience
All-in-one telecoms solutions offer the convenience of bundling billing with various other functionalities. However, when it comes to billing, we argue that specialization is key, as detailed below.
Embracing Specialisation: The Case for a Best-of-Breed Telecoms Billing Solution
Telecoms billing goes beyond mere invoicing; it’s a complex process that demands precision. It is such a business-critical application that we would argue it requires a vendor whose sole focus is billing, with no distractions.
Standalone best-of-breed telecoms billing solutions are designed to excel in one specific area—billing. They offer several compelling advantages:
- Focused Expertise: Standalone billing solutions prioritize billing without distractions, ensuring accuracy and efficiency.
- Flexibility and Customisation: These solutions offer tailored configurations to align with your business’s unique requirements.
- Avoiding the ‘Jack of All Trades’ Trap: Attempting to be an all-encompassing solution risks becoming a ‘jack of all trades and master of none.’ Specialized systems require a depth of understanding and knowledge to excel. Attempting to reinvent the wheel, by for instance trying to become the next Salesforce CRM or Xero accounting platform, is often unnecessary when integration options exist. This is equally true from the other angle. We do not see Salesforce trying to build a rating engine or Xero doing telecoms billing, for good reason.
- Wholesale Independence: Choosing a standalone best-of-breed telecoms billing solution ensures you are not tied to a single wholesale service provider, allowing flexibility to switch providers or adopt new technologies or commercials as needed.
Navigating Integrations: Striking the Right Balance
Historically, concerns around integration challenges may have deterred adopting a best-of-breed solution. However, with an abundance of tools now available, integration has become a remarkably smooth process. For a web-based application, like ZOEY, we have simple Rest APIs, which make it very easy to integrate two packages together. You can take an off the shelf middleware application, like Zapier, to join the dots without the need for any code.
Nevertheless, it remains essential to strike the right balance in integration and understand where to set limits. Often, we see resellers using integration to compensate for a lack of functionality or usability within a legacy billing platform. Additionally, many get caught up in over-integrating which can result in more complicated processes. It is important to delve deeper and understand what you need to integrate and why. We work with our partners to really understand their goals and look at the most efficient way of achieving something, whether that’s integration or refining business processes.
A Growing Trend: Shifting Away from In-house Billing Solutions
This year alone, we’ve witnessed a notable shift as partners move from their in-house billing solutions to our ZOEY platform. While in-house solutions may appear practical initially, they can conceal limitations and compliance challenges. Upon discovering the capabilities of our ZOEY platform, partners have recognized that their in-house billing systems were actually holding them back. It is equally important to consider the risks associated with a single point of failure and the need for robust hosting.
Specialist billing providers offer compliance, scalability and agility, reducing the risks associated with maintaining in-house systems. In addition, repurposing in-house development teams after transitioning to standalone billing solutions allows businesses to focus on creating valuable intellectual property tailored to their unique needs.
Conclusion: The Power of Standalone Billing Solutions and Efficient Integrations
In summary, this blog highlights the significance of retaining standalone best-of-breed billing solutions in the telecommunications industry. Specialisation ensures accuracy, efficiency and compliance in billing processes, while thoughtfully managed integrations streamline operations without adding unnecessary complexity.
The key takeaway is that while integrations are valuable, they should serve a clear purpose and not lead to over-integration. A balance between standalone billing excellence and well-managed integrations is the recipe for success in the ever-evolving world of telecommunications.
If you’d like to find out more, listen to Episode 3 of our TELK-Talks, where our billing experts delve further into the question ‘Should billing be a best-of-breed solution’?
Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch. We are here to guide you through the process, ensuring you maximize the potential of your telecoms billing system.