In 2016 Northstream Telecom Consultants conducted a research study - the purpose of which was to determine the potential gains Western European Operators could realise through the deployment of what it calls Real-time Self-Service (RTSS). That is the ability for customers to have a superior customer experience by interacting via an App on their smartphones with a digitally mature service provider in near real time.

Northstream’s conclusion was that business benefits of €4.7 Billion could be realised per year across Western European operators through advanced Real Time Self Service applications.

Operational benefits come from two areas:

Increased usage of data services and low cost sales of new offers resulting in higher data ARPU

OPEX savings from reduced customer care costs

The study highlighted that Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) focus almost exclusively on OPEX savings when judging investments in Self Service. This is because OPEX savings are tangible, measurable and in comparison, to revenue generation, easier to forecast. Furthermore, the traditional self-service applications (Self Service v1.0) were custom developed to MNO’s OPEX reduction specifications and lack the revenue generation capabilities of the latest standard ‘commercial off the shelf’ products now available on the market as well as their support for standard, simplified customer journeys (Self-service v2.0).

The study identified that a dedication to reducing OPEX is preventing MNOs from realising the true revenue potential, at €541m, OPEX savings are significant but represent only 11% of total potential gains for Western European MNOs.

The true scope of what can be realised can be attributed to revenue gains from the extensive opportunities for digital innovation that are enabled by Self Service v2.0.

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