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A Seismic Shift Shakes the Foundation of the CSP Billing Systems Market

Akil Chomoko

26 January 2022

The Gartner® view on billing and monetization for the telecommunications market is changing and it’s getting the attention of communications service providers (CSPs) across the globe.

For the first time, we believe Gartner is recommending best of breed SaaS/PaaS vendors as viable alternatives to traditional business support systems (BSS). And at the same time, Gartner has adopted “monetization” as its category descriptor instead of the old BSS terminology they have used for years.

While on its face, these things may not seem like earth shattering news, a deeper dive will explain why this marks the beginning of a significant change for the $20 billion CSP Revenue Management and Monetization (RM&M) Solutions market.

Gartner recently published its 2021 Gartner Market Guide for CSP RM&M Solutions to help CSPs navigate the landscape for RM&M solutions. Aria is recognized as a Representative Vendor that offers a pure, public-cloud, SaaS/PaaS monetization platform. The company is one of 14 Representative Vendors recognized by Gartner based on its competitiveness as seen by competitors, product portfolio, geographic spread and progress made in the last year.

In Gartner key findings, they state that CSPs’ existing RM&M application portfolios lack ample capabilities in the areas of support for new business models and monetization approaches, improving data monetization, cloud-native architecture adoption, and technology upgrades for 5G use cases. That’s a long list of important ingredients that are missing.

CIOs and CTOs have also become increasingly disillusioned with traditional BSS/OSS transformation approaches. Now, more than ever, they are looking to build flexible and dynamic IT architectures as networks become agile with SDN/NFV-based technologies like 5G. As a result, these decision makers are actively shifting course to adopt best-of-breed and cloud-native strategies to reach their business objectives.

We believe the grumblings among CSP tech execs have not been lost on Gartner. The leading research firm is now recommending that CSPs include new and emerging suppliers (with low-code/no-code solutions, and/or strong SaaS/PaaS offerings) in their sourcing strategies, particularly for specific line of business requirements. Gartner also recognizes that multi-industry vendors like Aria are now well suited to support CSP’s various business and diversification strategies, as well as new operating models that will improve profitability and agility.

In a supporting market trends report, Gartner recommends a best-of-breed billing and monetization approach, especially when it’s paired with SaaS/PaaS solutions for CRM (customer relationship management) and CPQ (configure price quote) and related omni-channel customer portals for enterprise and SMB segments.

A closer look at the 2021 Gartner Market Guide makes it abundantly clear to us that CSPs are broadening their view of the billing/monetization landscape. They want to work with vendors who can help them break free from the onerous BSS architecture and operating models of the past. Now more than ever, CSPs need to embrace a new cultural dynamic within their businesses to make change faster, at lower cost, and by utilizing their in-house people and skillsets. That mindset is fueling the foundational change that is now in motion in the CSP billing systems market. The modern RM&M capabilities that pure, public-cloud, SaaS/PaaS monetization platform providers like Aria provide are starting to shake things up.

Gartner, Market Guide for CSP Revenue Management and Monetization Solutions, By Amresh Nandan, Chris Meering, Jouni Forsman, Published 13 October 2021.

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Akil Chomoko

VP Product Marketing, Aria Systems. Akil leads solution marketing at Aria, building go-to-market strategies and programs in key target industries. Akil has over 20 years of experience in the telecoms industry, serving most recently in senior product marketing and management positions at MDS Global, AsiaInfo and CSG (Intec & Volubill).

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