Operations support systems(OSS) are a collection of software applications designed to manage  and support the operational activities of a telecom provider.
It works in tandem with Business Support Systems(BSS) in supporting telecom business activities.

Business Support Systems(BSS) are a collection of software applications that help telecom providers  in managing  and optimizing their customer administration processes. It handles the business aspects of the operations.
It doubles as an interface between telecom service providers  and their customers.

BSS and OSS in telecom, are integral parts of organizational operations, both serving distinct yet complementary roles. They form the backbone of telecom operations and ensure commercial viability and technical robustness.

Functions of BSS and OSS:

bss and oss in telecom

Functions of OSS (Operations Support Systems):

 

  • Network Monitoring and management

The system provides tools for real-time monitoring and management of network elements, including switches, routers, base stations and transmission equipment. This includes monitoring network performance, overall availability and fault detection to ensure optimal network operation.

  • Fault Management

OSS includes features for detecting, diagnosing and resolving network faults and performance issues. It provides alerts and notifications for abnormal conditions, facilitates fault isolation and supports troubleshooting to minimize service disruptions and anomalies.

  • Service Provisioning

OSS enables the automated provisioning and activation of services for customers. This includes the configuration of network resources, such as bandwidth allocation, service activation and subscriber provisioning, to support new service deployments or modifications and ensuring the services are delivered as promised to the customer.

  • Performance Management

Operation support systems collect, analyze and report on performance data from network performance metrics, such as latency, bandwidth and packet loss, to assess overall network health and performance. This includes monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs), identifying trends and optimizing network capacity and performance.

  • Inventory Management

OSS maintains an inventory of network assets, hardware devices, software components and logical network elements. It tracks the location, status and configuration of these assets to support network inventory planning for provisioning and maintenance activities, to aid in efficient resource allocation and capacity planning.

Functions of BSS (Business Support Systems):  

  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Used to manage customer information, developing and maintaining relationships through CRM, and gaining insights into customer behavior, to help personalize customer experience and manage support. It also includes trouble ticketing and help desk management.

  • Subscription Management

Subscription Management helps manage the periodic renewal and billing of specific products and services.

  • Billing and Invoicing

Includes accounts receivable, billing procedures, service level agreements (SLAs), customer notifications, and collections administration. This section guarantees that earnings are accurately recorded and optimized.

  • Product Management

They oversees planning, development and release of new products and services in terms of product lifecycle management, pricing and catalog, that meet the market demands.

  • Customer Order Management and Fulfillment

Place, edit, manage orders and retain full control on all processes all the way until the order fulfillment.

  • Notifications Management

Manages notifications regarding the subscriptions, payment, invoices or any other custom notifications added by the client.

Salient Difference between BSS and OSS:|Salient Difference between BSS and OSS in Telecom:

 

BSS

OSS

1 . Purpose:

BSS focuses on the business workflow, managing customer interactions, billing, sales and revenue. Its primary functionality includes handling customer service, financial transactions and business processes. OSS focuses on managing and maintaining the network operations and the technical infrastructure and ensuring their optimal functioning.

2 . Components:

  • CRM systems.
  • Order management systems(OMS)
  • Sales, Billing and revenue management systems
  • Product management systems (PDMS)
  • Customer service.
  • Inventory management systems(IMS)
  • Network management systems(NMS)
  • Element management system(EMS)
  • Performance management system(PMS)
  • Fault management system(FMS)

3 . Primary Activities:

  • Customer service management and CRM
  • Order and service management and fulfillment
  • Invoicing and payment processing
  • Support Sales and marketing
  • Product pricing, development and lifecycle management.
  • Performance management
  • Network monitoring and management
  • Network security
  • Fault management and resolution
  • Service provisioning
  • Inventory management

4 . Customer Interaction:

BSS directly interacts with customers through sales, customer service, billing, order and account management and CRM. It handles all customer-facing business processes, monetization of services and ensures excellent customer experience.  OSS does not interact directly with customers but focuses on managing the infrastructure that supports customer-facing activities. It ensures that the network operates smoothly, which indirectly impacts customer satisfaction.

Synergy:

BSS and OSS are crucial for the seamless delivery of services and efficient operations for a telecom company. Effective integration ensures that data flows smoothly between the technical and business systems, enabling a comprehensive customer service experience.

For example, when an order is placed, BSS handles the order processing and billing, through the order management system(OMS), which interacts with OSS to provision and configure the necessary network resources and activate the service. 

If a customer reports an issue, the customer service representative can access relevant information from both BSS and OSS,  real-time data from OSS can inform BSS about network performance issues that may affect billing or service quality, enabling proactive customer communication and issue resolution.
OSS provides performance and network statuses to BSS, which are used for decision making, billing and customer service.

Therefore, BSS and OSS play complementary roles to each other and work in Synergy to provide high quality services to customers and maximize revenue.

 

OSS  and BSS play an important role in a telecom network and act as the foundational pillars of telecom operations, with OSS focusing on the technical operations  and maintenance of the network infrastructure, while BSS centers on managing the customer interactions  and the business processes.
Understanding the differences and the importance of their integration helps telecom companies provide high quality services and maintain operational efficiency.
They work in unison to form the backbone of telecom operations and deliver a comprehensive customer experience.