The Database of Record
TRI: Hossein, you've mentioned the Database of Record a couple times now. Can you explain what that is in a nutshell?
Eslambolchi: The foundation for any transformation program is the database of record because whether you put in new services or new network, or collapse your network, if the database is inaccurate, you run into trouble.
If the database has multiple addresses for a single consumer or business entity, it will stop you from getting a new service to them because you're not sure which one you should use. In fact, as new databases are born, each of them thinks it's the master database and there are no slave databases.
When you transform a business, you're building a house. And before you put up a roof, it's essential that you build a solid foundation.
The reason I like what Intelliden is doing is they've created a database of record foundation for heterogeneous networks.
In effect, the state of the network at any given time becomes my database of record. And if you're dealing with 50,000 versions of Cisco's IOS software and many versions of Juniper's JUNOS software, how do you manage all these code changes? If you rely on the traditional code-driven model, you're bound to fail -- or your transformation cycle times will be way too long.
But if you make your model data-driven, you can gain some leverage. Once you have that Database of Record, you can provide security services, policy-based management services, and control your access -- who comes in and who leaves. You can provide new revenue assurance and collaborative services because you know the real-time state of your network.
Then there's also what we found at AT&T, a lot of stranded assets. You're charging the customer for an asset that doesn't exist in the inventory. So how do you reconcile these databases and your asset?
Remember if you are charging an enterprise company off an asset database, it's going to creep into your billing system. And it's going to go out as a bill and the customer says, "But I don't have this service." And because you don't have the right database of record the errors exceed 10 to 12% . Now can you imagine getting an American Express bill every month that's 12% in error? You're not going to be very happy.
So what Intelliden does is find a way to get better CAPEX efficiency by identifying your stranded assets. Then, with better OPEX efficiency, your cycle time starts shrinking. And this allows you to start driving innovation instead of being consumed by fixing the database manually.
By the way, manually fixing that network database of record is an impossible anyway. There are so many network elements out there from different network management systems.