What is a Convergent Billing System?|What is a Convergent Billing Solution?|What is a Convergent Billing Engine?|What is a Convergent Billing Platform?|What is a Convergent Billing Software?|What is Converged Billing?|What is a Converged Billing System?

A Convergent Billing System refers to a billing software system which can cater to multiple services under one user account and provide a unified statement covering charges for all the services, irrespective of whether the services are prepaid or postpaid. To know more about convergent billing, read our Convergent Billing page.

EarnBill is a Convergent Billing System with a flexible suit of features that cater to various aspects of dealing with unified or centralised tracking of a user account, with multiple prepaid and / or postpaid services operating under such an account. 

EarnBill can produce an itemised monthly statement which shows both the prepaid and postpaid services (see the adjoining monthly statement which is produced by EarnBill).

The itemised statement clearly shows the service summary information for a prepaid service followed by a separate service summary for a postpaid service. The amount for the prepaid service being already paid, reflects in the total payments section, whereas the fees for the postpaid service are reflected as an outstanding balance at the bottom of the invoice. This is a very convenient feature but a number of systems work in the background to meet this convergent billing requirement in a neat manner.

Convergent Billing Platform

Prepaid Billing and Postpaid Billing – Working Together

The diagram below shows how EarnBill’s Convergent Billing Engine brings together the Prepaid Billing and the Postpaid Billing systems to work together.

Convergent Billing System

As shown in the diagram, the network traffic is captured through the telecommunication lines and is passed to the telecom operator’s equipment such as the Switch and the UGW (Universal Gateway). The Postpaid usage is captured on a Switch which produces the CDRs (or Call Data Records) which are then transmitted through a CDR feed system to the EarnBill’s Convergent Billing System. Similarly, the prepaid usage traffic is captured at the UGW (Universal Gateway) and transmitted to the EarnBill’s Convergent Billing Solution via a Radius or Diameter listener.

EarnBill’s Billing Mediation engine then processes the postpaid usage traffic while EarnBill’s Online Charging System (or OCS) processes the prepaid traffic. The Billing Mediation and the OCS are hardened/chiseled modules of EarnBill’s Convergent Billing Platform. They send the evaluated charges to the Billing Core and finally to the invoicing engine. The invoicing process converges the charges from prepaid as well as postpaid services into a single invoice statement.

EarnBill’s Convergent Billing Solution and Reconciliation

The diagram below explains how EarnBill’s Convergent Billing Solution works and how the converging prepaid and postpaid charges are reconciled at an account level.

Convergent billing software

The Prepaid Services use a Recharge Transaction in the system to increase the prepaid quota or the prepaid balance. The Online Charging System (or OCS) processes the prepaid usage traffic and deducts the prepaid usage quota or the prepaid balance.

The service continues until there is sufficient quota or balance for the service but once the quota or balance is exhausted, the OCS starts sending the rejections for incoming accounting clearance requests. The OCS system also accumulates the usage charges and sends them to the invoicing engine (depicted by the Bill Run job). The Prepaid Subscription charges and usage charges are processed by the Bill Run to add them to the account’s invoice.

The Postpaid services are activated with the creation of a postpaid subscription in the system. As the service gets activated, the CDRs (Call Data Records) start flowing through EarnBill’s Billing Mediation engine which produces the postpaid usage charges.

The Postpaid Subscription charges and the usage charges are sent to the Bill Run job to add them to the account’s invoice. This way charges emanating from the prepaid as well as the postpaid service for the same account get added to that account’s invoice and accumulated as a service summary for each service.

In case of a prepaid service, the recharge transaction produces the payment which automatically pays down the prepaid charges added to the invoice, thus not creating an additional outstanding balance when the invoice statement is generated.

This billing process allows for prepaid service charges to be listed in the invoice statement without implying that they need to be paid. A postpaid service payment will create an outstanding ‘total due’ balance on the invoice which gets paid down when a payment is made for the account.

Financial Reporting Designed for Convergent Billing

EarnBill being a Convergent Billing Software is designed to produce financial reports that can cater to the complex requirements of revenue reporting, for example reporting the unearned revenue received from the prepaid services, while also having options to report the un-billed revenue occurring on the postpaid services.

The financial reports are available in both the summary format as well as the detailed format. Some of the bigger reports are also available as report jobs that can provide SFTP handoffs for big revenue reports containing all services or recharge transactions etc.

Ease of Configurability

EarnBill is an easily configurable Converged Billing System. It’s ease of configuration is available under one web console provided to the billing administrator. The billing admin does not have to shift systems or logins to set up the converged billing scenarios. Whether it is the functional configuration such as the product catalogue, plans (prepaid or postpaid), bundles, discounts, fees etc or the technical configuration such as setting up the OCS connections with the UGW, all the parameters can be configured conveniently from EarnBill’s secured web administration portal.

Go Live with a Quick Launch

Setting up a Convergent Billing System can be complex, but with automation in testing, deployment and commissioning, EarnBill allows you to go for a quick fire launch of your systems in no time. Typically, a complex Convergent Billing Implementation can take months, however EarnBill system continually endeavours to cut down the launch of such complex billing system into weeks. This is a great advantage for the customers who can rely on EarnBill’s tested features and go live sooner.

 Hit Your Targets Sooner

Going live sooner, means hitting your business goals sooner. After a successful launch of your Convergent Billing Platform with EarnBill, the process of “Strategise – Build – Launch” takes over as a BAU (Business As Usual) process, promoting innovation in your organisation:

      • to promote your products and services,
      • to increase the revenue, and,
      • to reduce the costs.

This support is feasible with EarnBill providing the foundation to customise, build and release your innovative business ideas.

Scalable, Reliable and Robust

EarnBill is a highly scalable, reliable and robust Convergent Billing System. It is a time tested billing platform with multiple different implementations that continue today to derive benefits from their long standing association.