Understanding the changing dynamics of the market
Big Interview

Understanding the changing dynamics of the market


Gary Hope, strategy and regulation director at Telefónica Global Solutions, talks about the need to differentiate the wholesale offering and transform the customer relationship

  1. As director of strategy, what do you think are the most important challenges facing the sector in the coming years?

From my point of view, I believe that the most important challenge in this sector, and in many others, is constant change. We are living in a time in which technological or business disruptions are happening at an ever-increasing speed. In the wholesale world we are seeing new players entering the market, accelerating the need to transform and drive efficiencies across all business processes.

For this reason, we need to focus on digitalising our business; embracing new technologies; exploring new business models and above all listening to the market and our customers to understand their needs.

In our sector, we are seeing increasing competition which means as telcos we need to differentiate our offering and transform the customer relationship. At Telefónica Global Solutions we are constantly reinforcing our portfolio, with innovative products and new digital interfaces, such as portals and APIs, to facilitate the management and customisation of services. We are seeing a lot of movement in this regard and we are putting a lot of focus in digitalising customer end-to-end experience in networking, voice and messaging services. Making our services available to our customers in this manner means we are opening new opportunities by enabling them to integrate our services into their solutions.

In summary, I believe wholesalers need to understand the changing dynamics of the market and accelerate the transformation of the customer relationship in order to stay relevant.

  1. In your opinion, what are the key skills and capabilities that carrier organisations need for the next years?

To execute the previously mentioned transformation, we need to design our networks and services in a more flexible and agile manner. To do so, organisations need to incorporate new capabilities and skills to manage the transition from a traditional to a software environment. Competition to attract and retain these capabilities for telcos is becoming increasingly difficult with OTTs, hyperscalers and new players all competing for limited digital native resources and talent.

Keeping pace with technological changes is vital in order to exploit the many new opportunities that technological disruptions present and shape the company strategy. I believe there needs to be a close relationship between the company’s technological resources and the business and strategy teams.

Companies that manage to attract and retain the necessary resources, such as software developers and experts in emerging technologies, to face and exploit technological disruptions are the ones that will succeed in the future.

  1. What are your strategic priorities for the next 12 months?

At Telefónica Global Solutions our priorities revolve around the adaptability that I mentioned.

We continue to embrace new technologies, exploiting opportunities and the evolution of our services towards 5G, as is the case with our roaming and IPX services. We are also working with new technologies such as blockchain which has the potential to change the wholesale ecosystem. In this regard, our priority is to continue dedicating efforts promoting these and other new technologies and to see what role we can develop in them.

We also continue to bet heavily on the digitisation of our services and the relationship with customers. We are constantly developing new interfaces to connect with our customers and suppliers through APIs and portals, offering them tools that allow them to self-manage services and to make use of the huge amount of data that these tools provide to help their business.

In this year of recovery, where we hope to see some activities such as tourism return to normal, we also want to bet on our improved offer of roaming services. Likewise, we want to exploit the relevant capabilities and assets we have in the satellite market which is going through a very interesting technological disruption that can be seen in the level of investment in the sector.

Finally, as I have already mentioned, we need to continue fostering the spirit of change within the company. I believe that pushing a company culture that is open to managing constant change is what will determine whether we are successful or not in the strategy that we set for ourselves in the coming years.

For more information about Telefónica Global Solutions, visit www.globalsolutions.telefonica.com

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