This post is by Lars Lagerström from Nokia Siemens Networks.
Making choices is never easy and with myriad choices available in today’s world , it’s even more difficult. Finding the right pair of jeans, buying a car, or deciding on next year’s vacation all require dedicated research to find the right fit.
The multiplicity of choices also applies to operators when they are deciding which steps to take next. Having a reference or baseline architecture brings structure, the wisdom of experience, and proven results to the process.
What are the requirements for an effective Reference Architecture? From our standpoint, experience and extensive work with operators, there are four key questions to answer here.
First, does the solution mesh naturally into existing daily routines, helping to improve them?
This is where a Framework and Best Practice Process Library play a strong role. We have developed a best practice library based on our own experience from 200 million subscribers and close to 1 million network elements managed by our Global Delivery Centers, along with many decades of working with our customers to match our offering to their needs.
Second, does the solution fit with the operator’s future plans?
This is where an Application Framework fits into the picture, providing a big picture view of the change, evaluating the fit with other systems, and identifying possible gaps that need to be addressed.
The third question is: how easy is it to integrate the solution into the existing environment?
An Integration Framework is key here to define how the building blocks can be incorporated so that is easy to implement and maintain.
The fourth and last question applies to knowledge management. Where is the best place to create and maintain the information related to the solution?
The Information Framework, which defines common databases, data models and access methods, provides the answer with one common location where information can be shared by all relevant applications.
These are the four elements that make up the Nokia Siemens Networks Reference Architecture. Designed to help operators ensure the best possible fit between new and existing solutions, it is based on TM Forum Frameworx, which 91% of the world’s leading operators use as the basis for their processes. We’ve also added a number of enhancements and best practices in areas such as Customer Experience Management and Networks and Service Operations in order to make our Reference Architecture even more relevant for our customers, especially as the complexity of their technology and services and the quality demands of their subscribers continue to grow.
What is your recommendation for finding the right fit between new and existing solutions in your network?