With the Middle East telecom sector set for continued growth in the second half of 2014, industry analysts and more than 25 regional telecom operators gathered this week at the annual Huawei MENA Services Conference to discuss new trends and exchange initiatives on Professional Services to deliver greater value to their subscribers.
The two-day customized conference encompassed a variety of dedicated seminars and panel discussions during which participants were able to address current industry challenges such as growing customer demands in MBB, reducing operational expenditures, improving service quality, and the convergence of ICT and transformation strategies.
In recent years telecom operators in the Middle East have started to leverage new trends and best in class Professional Services enabling them to elevate the quality of their services to comply with industry standards and to expand their view from network-focused operations to actual service-focused innovation and customer experience management. These Professional Services are typically offered by leading vendors such as Huawei and include technology consulting, network integration, network managed services, customer support, and customer experience assurance.
“The digital revolution, driven by end-users’ desire to dramatically change the way they connect with family and friends, the way they work, and the way they communicate, requires the industry to transform. End-users want real time, on demand, always online communications capabilities that are do it yourself simple. Having opportunities such as the Huawei MENA Services Conference to discuss industry transformation with stakeholders from across the region allows participants to identify exciting collaborative opportunities through Professional Services to drive the transformation of ICT from a network-centric focus to an experience-centric focus.” says Dr. Leroy G. Blimegger Jr. Global President Assurance & Managed Services
The demand for revolving Managed Services and smart outsourcing remains particularly strong within the Middle East telecommunications sector, with a broader and deeper scope. Changes in the telecom business environment coupled with the explosion of mobile services and applications were also noted as driving local operators to invest more in Customer Experience Management (CEM) solutions to cultivate further commercial opportunities.
“Keeping our customers at the heart of everything we do, cooperation on Professional Services has been a longstanding tradition of Mobily as we look to leverage the very best global expertise and experiences in our offerings,” adds Ashraf Ismail Ibrahim, Senior Executive Officer for Network Operation & Maintenance for Mobily. “Forums like the Huawei MENA Services Conference enable us to realize these ambitions through co-creating platforms that can really differentiate our services in the market.”
“The Middle East and North Africa is an extraordinary market where investments in capacity, managed services and customer experience transformation are seeing rapid uptake by the telecom community,” notes Michael Sullivan, Executive Analyst - Networking & Mobility Practice at Technology Business Research. “Professional Services that can support these offerings will be an important evolutionary step within the region as operators are in turn able to deliver customized multimedia broadband services in a more efficient manner.”
In a white paper  released last year by conference organizers Huawei, the company conducted a study evaluating and analyzing the development of the telecom managed services (MS) business globally and how the industry is moving from the traditional outsourcing model in which the main driver is cost reduction to a new partner-based model that seeks to add value to the business of the operator at all levels.
Huawei has been a pioneering leader in the Professional Services market globally as well as in the Middle East, where the company has provided consultancy and managed services to leading operators including Etisalat, du, Zain, Mobily, Wataniya, Nawras, and others.