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Issue 18 Articles

Pipeline Innovation Award Nominee 2012OSSera Helps CSP Launch 15 New Services per Month

InterComms talks to David Fazhong Deng about OSSera’s Service Management Approach for OSS Business Transformation

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David Fazhong Deng, Co-Founder & CTO, Chairman of the Board
David Fazhong Deng, Co-Founder & CTO, Chairman of the Board

David has over 20 years of experience in software architecture and building teams. He co-founded OSSera, Inc in 2007 based in Davis, California and has been the Chairman of the Board & CTO since then. Prior to that, David had worked for Objective System Integrators and Agilent Technologies for more than 10 years as Senior Software Engineer and Software Architect. David graduated with a M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Nebraska. David continues to contribute to many high-tech forums. He is a respected member of the Telecom Management Forum (TMF) and continues to lead OSSera, Inc. in building products that meet the TMF Frameworx standards.

Q: With CSP’s facing increased pressure on their revenue, what key areas do you think they should be concentrating on?
A: Key Takeaway:

  • We believe the key areas of focus is Service Planning (Strategy, Infrastructure, and Product) which enables effective Service Monitoring as well as Customer Experience Management, Service Level Agreement Management, and Customer Quality of Service.
  • We also see a need for a comprehensive end-to-end Performance Management, which can provide KPI/KQI’s for the higher level Service Blueprints for overall Service Quality Management.
  • Also for total business transformation we see a need not just limited to modeling of service models for Value Added Services but also modeling of their business processes as identified in TAM and eTOM for more efficient human resource management and process re-engineering.

Q: One of the key complaints to CSP’s is that they are reactive to problems rather than proactive, this is a key area to retaining clients, are there easy solutions to this?
A: This has been the result of 20 years in bottom-up Fault Management and Performance Management practices. We know that in traditional OSS systems a Fault Management system is installed to gather events from managed resources. This then gives the NOC “visibility” into potential problems. But the result is an over worked overwhelmed NOC with far too many alarms to manage. Even performance systems today poll or parse metrics, which deal with network performance KPI’s, but Threshold Cross Alarms may quickly overwhelm a NOC. The natural tendency is for Operations to become reactive.

  • The key area to retain clients is a move to Service Planning for Customer specific high-ARPU services, then building up to all Customer-Facing services and supporting Resource-Facing Services. The need is great for a system to manage Service and Business Blueprints that can not only be used in the modeling work groups but also be moved into operations within a unified model.
  • Is there an easy solution? We believe OSSera’s Service Manager built upon the OSS Explorer platform enables this business transformation.
Benefits over Time

Q: How easy is it to deploy your USF Service Management solution and can it be up-scaled and down-scaled to fit each company?
A: Yes, the Unified Services Frameworx enables Service Management functions for any services blueprint and can be leveraged for critical services such as in the case of AIS Thailand the customer had Value-Added-Services for mobile and broadband across 30 million subscribers. We are also looking at managing a smaller deployment focused on Leased-Line Service Impact and Analysis for less than 1000 business customers. Therefore the system can be scaled down for small deployments or scaled up for large deployments.

New service blueprints can be developed and designed using a tool similar to Visio. Over time as users begin to see the benefits of an integrated collaborative solution they begin to produce more and more services. For example our customer AIS is producing a dozen or more service models a month and deploying these into the operation center. They have a very effective planning team generating new services, which equates to greater customer retention and increased revenue streams.

Q: What is the scale of the Service Management deployment?
A: The benefits of the solution have enabled business transformation with a focus on Strategy, Infrastructure, and Product (SIP) and Operations management functions. OSSera’s direct user is a content aggregator or IT Service Provider (ITSP). The ITSP continues to deliver the management tool for supporting mobile wireless and broadband customers. Today the ITSP manages 2,000+ service models with OSSera’s Service Manager. The Service Manager deployment runs upon a single Sun Server handling 28M alarms per day using multi-threaded processing of the alerts against policies.

In summary the numbers include:

  • 50 planners
  • 220 total operators
  • 1600 service nodes
  • 4400 node groups
  • 7800 resource nodes
  • 2400 services
Timeline with Quantities

Q: Does it enable the ITSP to get products to market faster; if so which products, and how much faster?
A: Yes. The solution was able to:

  1. . Shorten the time it takes for a Service Planner to visualize a service flow and automatically create a service path topology diagram. This then accelerated the time it took to build up a service impact diagram.
  2. Shorten the time it takes to test and deploy a set of service definitions into operations through a unified data model and cohesive process. The actual timeframe in savings was reduced from months to weeks and weeks to days depending upon the complexity of the service.

Most of these services included Value-Added Services (VAS), which could be deployed quickly to stay competitive and meet time-to-market demands. VAS Packages included Mobile Life Portal, Music, SMS / MMS, Call Management, Downloads, mLIVE, Voice2U. Resource-Facing Services included GPRS/GSM, Edge/UMTS, and IP.

“The ITSP continues to see at least a 50% increase in efficiencies in producing new Value-Added-Services by leveraging an End-to-End Service Flow, Service Path, and Service Impact to Service Monitoring process from SIP to Operations as defined by the TMF Business Process Framework. The ITSP was successful because of their early adoption of our framework with a true vision of what they wanted. Today they are also managing Human Resources and are using OSSera’s Service Modeler to further re-engineer business processes at the organizational level. The Service Planning team has doubled the number of Service Models. They are also able to launch approximately 15 new services per month.”, per David Deng, CTO, OSSera.

Q: Does it enable the ITSP to save money, if so how?
A: Yes, the service management solution does save money for the ITSP because:

  1. Multiple departments share information, which is passed efficiently from SIP to Operational stakeholders.
  2. Multiple stakeholders increase efficiencies by accurately creating a service catalog and automatically converting service flows into service topologies. Very complex services can be modeled and monitored through reusable sub-components.
  3. The solution eliminates the need for the Service Operations Center to have to guess at service impact and service topology because the same diagrams that are designed by the service planner are leveraged in the operation center with actual real-time highlighted alerts.
  4. Accurate root cause analysis (not probable cause but accurate root cause) shortens the time to resolve problems quickly.

There was at least a 20 to 30% reduction in OpEx due to greater efficiencies between SIP and Operational business processes.

Q: Does your solution require fewer staff, etc?
A: Yes, the ITSP was able to repurpose valuable staff members from managing inefficient paper processes between silo’d departments to creating more Value-Added-Services through the efficient SIP to Operations tool.

The ITSP continues to make the planners more mobile via the offline Service Manager SIP tools which grew their service planner team virtually and each planner is now more efficient because they can design service models outside of the office - allowing them to deploy more services to stay competitive.

Q: Does it enable faster deployment of products, can you explain how this
is achieved?

A: Our case study highlights over 2000+ service models, which support products for the CSP. The CSP has now expanded modeling Service Blueprints across several planning engineers. They continue to be the leading CSP in Thailand due to top-down OSS business transformation.

Q: Where do you see the major future problems in this area and how is OSSera placed to help?
A: We see problems in specific solutions where OSSera can help including Customer Experience Management, Service Planning, Service Quality Management, Automated Troubleshooting, and a Unified Platform for Service and Resource Management for Carrier Ethernet, Metro Ethernet, Wireless 4G, and IPTV.

The latest release of OSSera’s Service Manager is Service Quality Manager (SQM 2.1) which has been enhanced to empower service planners by allowing them to model service blueprints remotely. Also with OSSera’s Unified Performance Management the framework can manage and monitor KPI/KQI’s, apply dynamic baselines, generate Threshold Crossing Alarms (TCA’s), and monitor service quality.

With these tools users can design their services with the following blueprint diagrams including:

  • Service Flow (Sequence) Diagrams,
  • Service Path (Topology) Diagrams,
  • Network Path Diagrams, and
  • Service Impact Diagrams.

“OSSera has a unique approach to Service Management by first focusing on the eTOM Strategy, Infrastructure, and Product business processes for Operational Readiness.” said David Deng, CTO and co-founder, OSSera, Inc., “The same blueprint diagrams are then deployed into OSSera’s OSS Explorer, a symmetrically distributed multi-threaded runtime platform providing 99.999% availability in monitoring services.”

“We want to thank the TMF for selecting our SQM Case Study to be featured in the TMF Case Study Handbook 2012, Pipeline for their 2012 Innovation Award nomination for Best Product Innovation and Deployment, and InterComms for their OSSera Interview. I believe the thought leaders in the industry see that David and the founders of OSSera have something special and want to help us get the word out... Service Modeling and Blueprints are something many have talked about but few have succeeded. We look forward to working with AIS and others on modeling and managing their cloud architecture, and ongoing business process reengineering,” Andrew Lee, VP of Marketing, OSSera, Inc.

In conclusion OSSera is enabling CSPs to stay competitive through OSS Business Transformation by giving architects, product managers, and engineers a unified methodology of specifying complete mobile and broadband service blueprint models for all B2B and B2C customers as well as manage the Customer Experience and Service Quality in an End-to-End Unified Solution.

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