Automation Trends in the Telecommunications Sector
Automation is rapidly changing how the world works. Across Europe automation is affecting industries such as healthcare, logistics, inspection, and cleaning. This is due to the many benefits, with Verizon Connect outlining how automation improves efficiency, generates useful insights, helps with organizing operational processes, and brings missed opportunities to light — which then drives profits and sparks innovation. The telecommunications industry is not a stranger to new technology and it is also using automation to improve workflows and customer service. Here are a few ways the telecommunications sector is implementing automation:
The rise of 5G marks the future of communications as it can also give high-powered connectivity to devices -- and this connectivity will also let machines communicate in an IoT environment. For telecommunications, we note in our post Industrial Automation IoT that 5G supports complex services, such as network slicing and multi-technology (such as wireless and wireline). While 5G allows Communication Service Providers (CSPs) to deliver new service requirements, it also gives them a chance to improve their network operations. After all, 5G facilitates digital transformation through its high speed, reliability, extreme bandwidth capacity, and low latency.
Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
It should be noted that RPA is only fundamentally based on AI, and it itself is not AI. Telecom deals with large volumes of operational processes, such as managing data and developing new services -- and RPA transforms operational processes by improving data communication and transmission while also having higher levels of data security. It also reduces error rates and improves customer service. For instance, RPA is able to auto-generate and analyze reports in order to decide which stakeholders the report is relevant to. Afterwards, they’ll automatically email it to them, which ensures the information flows more efficiently.
Virtual assistants, or conversational AI platforms, can now automate and efficiently handle one-on-one conversations for enhanced self-service capabilities. For example, Julia, Vodafone’s website virtual assistant, can help a customer from technical support to invoicing queries. It also gives these data back to Vodafone to help them in future decision-making, such as using the technical support data to improve their services. Recent reports show that the Julia was “delivering double the conversion rate of its website”. One reason for this is that virtual assistants give customers 24/7 support. Because of this, Customer Zone 360 mentions that 74% of companies consider virtual assistants as an important part of telecom, as it enables a more successful customer engagement.
Telecoms monitor the state of their equipment, predict failure based on patterns, and fix hardware, such as cell towers and power lines. To do all this, they need to analyze reliable data. Predictive analytics based on AI can utilize complex algorithms and machine learning techniques in order to analyze the data and eventually predict results. The company AT&T uses predictive analytics to detect network issues in real-time. Meanwhile, KPN scans and analyzes wide areas of connected piping for high-risk corrosion areas. In the short term, this technology is expected to improve root cause analysis and predictions. But in the long term, it’s expected to support more strategic goals, like efficiently answering business demands.
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By Jennidee Vera