Let’s stop and think if it is meaningful for a service operator to give away all the OSS tools and infrastructure it has, for the sake of moving to cloud. A very big shift in the operations would occur for sure. Trouble Ticket, Fault Management, Performance management , Inventory, Fulfilment systems even mediation should be moved.
Cloud solutions promise availability and maintainability with less cost. But they should be on the cloud service provider’s infrastructure which resides on a remote site.
Thinking of the gigabytes of transactions that occur in a service provider environment, it is necessary to invest in high capacity links to the cloud provider. And since the information is critical, we cannot rely on Internet connections, we would need dedicated links.
Guess what then? We should then monitor these links to be sure that they are up and running all the times. If you notice any performance problem, (at L7) you should open a trouble ticket to the service provider to fix the problem. Offcourse you can rely on your service provider’s monitoring capabilities and trust them that they are doing their jobs well but this is not the case in real world. At the end, we would need to reconcile what they say and what we perceive.
OSS Cloud may also come in front of us in the name of “Managed Service”. Some OSS vendors offer this kind of a solution where they construct a shared OSS infrastructure (TT, FM, PM etc.). These services are under heavy control by the cloud (managed) service provider. If you want to create a new report, change an existing rule etc, you cannot do it by yourself. Managed service providers have to apply this change management mechanisms in order to maintain this shared OSS architecture. Most of the high-tier telecom service providers have complex OSS business processes. Moving to an OSS cloud may mean, giving up these processes and move to more generic ones.
On the other hand, OSS cloud solutions could be suitable for green field operators where starting investment costs should be minimized. After becoming more mature, they could easily switch to a private OSS infrastructure. Offcourse, if that happens, investing in the same software would decrease the project’s implementation period so it is wise to understand cloud provider tool’s footprint, roadmap etc. before deciding on their services.