A Battle without a Plan


Mike Beecher, Head of Engineering



There is the story of a man on a journey that did not know where he was going, had no idea on how to get there and was never sure when he arrived.  That seems very illogical in today's world with all the GPS, maps and travel assistance available.  Yet in today's competitive telecommunications arena there is the perception that we do not need to plan anything because of the uncertainty of technology and unresolved financial high cost support ICC, USF and CAF2.  

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In the past 17 years that I have been in the telephone/telecommunications industry there has never been such a dramatic change in products, pricing models, competitive landscape, customer demands and the transition from the PSTN to IP network.  The complete transition of a voice based utility mindset to a broadband based competitive telecommunications company faced with a possible reduction of high cost support revenue stream makes for uncertainty and often times paralysis.  We are unsure about the journey or the route to take so we remain parked at the fork in the road.  

Not only is the revenue base changing,  the technology supporting the voice to data structure is in a migration from TDM to IP, skillsets required to perform the work on a day to day basis is changing.  The only constant appears to be change.

Interoffice bandwidths that were once calculated in T1's based on voice call volume are not based on an ever increasing consumption of multi-Gigabyte bandwidth from formally unknowns such as Netflix, Amazon, Facebook and Twitter.  With more connected devices in the home and the promise of a new multitude of applications for mobile devices the bandwidth required for the home is exploding.  Just remember after the holiday season when games and tablets are received and there is additional demand on the network.

A comprehensive broadband plan is only valid for a short period of time and then will be modified just like your household budget when you find out the furnace is broken and must be replaced.  A broadband plan should be revisited often to modify and adjust as the competitive landscape, technology and financial factors impact your business.

Battles are not often pleasant, but the failure to participate may not be an option.  The stakes are high, don't be caught looking at the fork in the road with no plan.


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Written by Michael Beecher at 00:00