3 out of 4 Telcos Still Rely on Stores and Call Centers for Revenues, Upstream Report Says
For over 70% of telecom operators, stores and call-centres are still the dominant distribution channels despite the unprecedented connectivity and e-transaction demand across the globe brought in by the Covid-19 pandemic. That’s according to a new report by mobile technology specialists, Upstream , conducted by the Technology Innovation Council (TIC).
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It is clear that telco operators understand the value digital sales can create. 75% of them are increasing their digital transformation investments, with around 65% having already developed their own digital transformation roadmaps. Nonetheless, only one in four have established relevant KPIs.
Upstream’s “Road to Digital ” report notes operators across markets identify the following as the top five benefits to their business from digital transformation, in this order: Cost reduction via automation (66%), improved customer experience (59%), improved revenue growth (46%), efficiencies through automation (39%) and more effective marketing (27%).
However, there are challenges that are still keeping most dependent on physical sales. They acknowledge such challenges to be: integrating new solutions with existing technologies and platforms (73%), privacy and data concerns (54%), cost of new solutions (46%), establishing the Return on Investment (ROI) (43%) and, lastly, internal skillset (34%), or rather the lack of it.
Leading the race to digital sales are operators in North America that record the highest digitally driven revenue percentage in the world (45% from digital channels already), followed by APAC countries (39%). In the Middle East and Africa physical sales are still king (72% physically driven revenue) while in Latin America 100% of telcos say they mostly rely on physical channels to derive revenues most of the time. European operators are somewhere in the middle (57% having switched from physical channels and deriving 29% of revenues mostly from digital sales).
“During the pandemic telecom operators worldwide worked around the clock and kept economies going, making connectivity possible for all of us. This has caused them to step up their own efforts to become more digital, bringing their more mid to long term plans forward. To succeed in creating value from digitalization and fast, telcos need to balance a fine line, overcome the big organization inertia, escape the drawing board and aim for smart quick wins and solutions” , says Upstream CEO, Dimitris Maniatis.
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