People often ask me difficult questions, which require me to give evasive answers. Questions like…
Q. What’s the biggest cause of revenue leakage in my telco?
A. I don’t know. I’ve not been inside your telco. Do I even know you? You’d need to show me lots of data, if I was going to answer that question properly. And because you’re asking me that question, you probably don’t have that data.
… and …
Q. How will revenue assurance have to change, in response to LTE?
A. Errr, not very much, I think. A bill is a still a bill, an event record is still an event record etc etc. You might need to deal with some new data sources and recs, but the principles shouldn’t change, whatever you’re selling, over whatever kind of network. I mean, a new radio interface doesn’t necessarily imply altering the way things are charged, or how payment is collected.
But sometimes, I get asked really easy questions.
Q. Would you like to write for Billing Views?
So that was pretty much the conversation I had with Alex Leslie and Tony Poulos of Billing Views. Which proves I can keep it short, when I know the answer to the question.
If you have not read Billing Views recently, I have two questions for you:
Q. Why not?
We are talking about a great publication with lots of readers. It has a higher Alexa ranking than any of its rivals, and every week it has lots of content that ventures well beyond billing. In fact, I think I will be mostly writing for the ‘beyond’ bit, which includes topics like revenue assurance, data integrity, business strategy, and whatever rubbish I usually write about.
… and …
Q. Why not?
When the guys at the helm are Alex Leslie and Tony Poulos, both of whom have a fabulous track record in media, you know that is a vehicle you want to board. Alex was the founder and CEO of the Global Billing Association, the first organization to introduce benchmarking for revenue assurance. He has written for a wide range of communication magazines and was a contributing editor for Connected Planet. Tony has founded and managed software and services companies, and is the former head of the TM Forum’s Revenue Management initiative. In 2011, Tony was voted one of the 25 most influential people in the telecom software industry. So when these guys have some news and views to share, it is worth taking notice…
Q. Eric, you convinced me. So what have you written for them so far?
I am glad you asked me that. My first post covers how changing systems at UK utility Npower resulted in a flood of complaints, and what this says about the need for a new breed of assurance. I argue that assurance practitioners need to become more predictive, allowing them to add more value to change management, whilst also anticipating the causes and cost of customer complaints. You can read it here.