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Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

  • 1.  Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 02, 2020 12:52
    Edited by Caui Leal Mar 02, 2020 12:53
    Good afternoon, everybody

    Based in a scenario that we have many different Sales Channels and CRM's systems, I'd like to list pros and cons of have a architecture with the catalog decoupled from the CRM.
    Besides that, I'd like to know if it is a market trend have the catalog decoupled from the CRM or is a market consent have the catalog be develop inside the own CRM?
    #DigitalEcosystems
    #OpenDigitalArchitecture
    #TMForumGeneral

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    Caui Leal
    Telefonica Brasil S.A.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 2.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 02, 2020 13:35
    Hi Caui
    I think that you will find many commercial vendors (including ourselves at Amdocs :) ) have a complete separation between the product catalog and CRM. And you refer to ODA, which also suggests separating between the customer management aspects (that are not dependent on telco-specific functionality, would include CRM) as against the commerce aspects (telco business specific, would include product catalog).

    There could be a loose dependency when coming to evaluate eligibility for offerings (product offering qualification), since the qualification rules may need a knowledge of customer details.

    Hope it helps

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    Jonathan Goldberg
    Amdocs Management Limited
    Any opinions and statements made by me on this forum are purely personal, and do not necessarily reflect the position of the TM Forum or my employer.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 3.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 02, 2020 16:03
    Even with many vendors providing a CRM solution with catalog separated to customer management I am used to face both solutions together, due to the reason that customer asset's use to be attached to the catalog. Following a solution with catalog separated to customer management make us all the time the necessity of accessing the customer asset's I'll need to consult a external base and interpret it or it's possible to have a customer care without consulting a external base?

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    Caui Leal
    Telefonica Brasil S.A.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 4.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 03, 2020 04:07
    Hi Caui

    The way the world is going is to have separate components, also a CRM will no longer be monolithic, but could have components such as Order Capture, Product Inventory, etc., that "live" in the Commerce layer, and Customer Management, Problem Management, etc., that "live" in the party layer.

    We can argue whether this is "good" or not, but not sure that this will be a helpful discussion.

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    Jonathan Goldberg
    Amdocs Management Limited
    Any opinions and statements made by me on this forum are purely personal, and do not necessarily reflect the position of the TM Forum or my employer.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 5.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 04, 2020 13:03
    Hi Caui,
    Agree with Jonathan and the world moving away from having centralized catalog concept. You would see Sales/ offer catalog, Service catalog, Resource catalog so on. Depend on the use, each these components used to provide solution and support.

    Sincerely,
    Srini Gokidi
    Charter Communications

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    Srinivasa Gokidi
    Charter Communications
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    Action Week 2021


  • 6.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 03, 2020 07:18
    Hi Caui,

    When you say Catalog, You refer to the concept of an Enterprise Product Catalog that has the Offer, Specification and Resource View of the Service being sold or are you referring to only the Sales Catalog where Only offers are stored that customer is sold in any online/mobile channels or via Agent facing channels like store/callcenter. ?

    Regards

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    samarth devadas
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    All Inputs are my Personal Opinion
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    Action Week 2021


  • 7.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 03, 2020 08:45
    Hi Caui,
    In my opinion, it is better to decouple CRM and the product catalog (PC) as PC is not just holding product definitions , it also must serve the whole ecosystem for the marketing rules such as eligibility, compatibility, availability, pricing, etc. Also, a catalog centric  design is required for most of the organizations to realize the same customer experience in different sales channels. Thus, the workload of the PC is increased intensively and its management, administration, configuration become more intensive. You may find that adapting or customizing standalone PC systems are much easier as they will provide many features specific to product management out-of-the-box whereas CRM systems' main focus would be customer related entities and transactions.
    Nevertheless, it all depends on the budget, cost (short & long term) and satisfaction triangle in which we must all find a solution. It'll be your choice where to stand.

    Bugra

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    Bugra SAMLI
    ETIYA
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    Action Week 2021


  • 8.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 04, 2020 08:46
    Hi to all of you,

    In my opinion, EPC and CRM belong to different worlds where your EPC must be Telco specific while your CRM is not industry specific. The EPC is part of the whole activation chain from Product Browsing,  Quoting, Order Capture down to the Provisioning. And these activities can be done through digital channels and/or other internal channels. To that extent, the content of the EPC shall stretch from the pure commercial definitions including the configuration rules, eligibility, etc. And it goes down to the services and resources to activate to fulfill an order. Especially if your IT stack is made of several components, then the EPC will become the necessary "glue" between each of them. And CRM will be one of the many consumers of the information contained in your EPC. Now to have a real Catalog Driven Architecture to speed up your TTM requires to go a bit further where all the scattered catalogs are actually fed by your EPC in a master-slave mode. To achieve this, you cannot use a Catalog from a CRM suite that are usually not Telco specific. It has to be a specialized Telco Catalog that can ideally be deployed independently from any other components.

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    Patrick Evrard
    Orange Belgium NV/SA
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    Action Week 2021


  • 9.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Mar 05, 2020 08:48
    Hi Patrick,  thanks for your view point , are you suggesting centrlized catalog ? or shouldn't EPC be product master and have it federated across systems CRM - to consume Sales catalog , Billing - commercial and service catalog with relevant activation. Most of the system in flow of activation does require product definition to be local.

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    Mohamed Umar
    Vlocity
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    Action Week 2021


  • 10.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Apr 15, 2020 07:05
    Edited by ZAINUL ABIDEEN Apr 15, 2020 07:08
    Usually Product is coupled with CRM. However we have it decoupled it and coupled to Billing since billing also requires it. CRM can call for the PLM when required. Also product can be pure product catalog and can also be combined to service catalog based on services of the provider.

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    ZAINUL ABIDEEN
    NMSWorks Software Pvt. Ltd.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 11.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 08, 2020 09:51
    One more important Aspect of Product Catalog is Product lifecycle management. Decoupled Product catalog i believe is more effcient approach to manage PLM Use cases right from  product concept to retirement. In decoupled Product catalog you can easily play with draft conceptual product definations.

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    khalid patel
    Capgemini
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    Action Week 2021


  • 12.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 09, 2020 10:56
    Good Morning, Gentlemen!

    There are benefits from both the shared catalog and federated catalogs across your domains (Marketing and Sales, Customer, Product). The key adequate decoupling between domains which has an allowance for domain-specific specialization is possible in each domain. However, the catalog in "Core Business" plays a pivotal role which is analogous to the central nervous system. However, you wouldn't want let's say the Market campaign can be fully catered by the catalog under "Core Business" - in order for Market Campaign to be data-driven, we would be looking at the need for a catalog in Marketing that feeds on the catalog from "Core Business" and has a mapping to the marketing domain artifacts.

    The shared catalog from Salesforce Industries (Vlocity) marries Commerical/sales and technical product catalogs to drive decomposition and fulfillment plans completely catalog-driven. The shared catalog help quoting and ordering based on a shared catalog - the catalog provides a framework for defining eligibility, availability, and compatibility rules in a declarative manner.

    Finally, my perspective is: business agility and low TCO is the uncompromisable imperative, so the need is for catalog solutions/frameworks that meet these imperatives.

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    Anil Satram
    Salesforce
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    Action Week 2021


  • 13.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 09, 2020 11:19
    One important consideration for decoupled product catalog is  how efficiently we can migrate products to respective CRM , BSS and OSS systems . How effectively catalog supports TMF 620 API to import products from partners and distributors. I am currently working on B2B transformation project where this is one of the challenge to import and export product catalog from legacy systems having multiple  CRM and billing systems.

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    khalid patel
    Capgemini
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    Action Week 2021


  • 14.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 09, 2020 13:35
    TMF620 gives you the interoperable interface for the management of the entire lifecycle of the catalog elements. The interrogation of catalog elements during several processes such as ordering process, campaign management, sales management. However, it doesn't give you extract and transform catalog data to /from legacy or another catalog provider.


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    Anil Satram
    Director, Program Architect | Salesforce Industries, UK

    -Disclaimer: Statements and opinions are from my own personal perspective, and have no direct position from my employer or TMF. This is purely in the spirit of collaborative learning and cross-pollination of ideas and views.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 15.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 10, 2020 08:20
    Interesting discussion here on catalog interoperability.
    To clarify:
    • TMF620 does support the concept of transferring catalog data between catalogs. We have the ImportJob and ExportJob task resources, and indeed one of the illustrative use cases in the user guide (formerly known as spec) is a case of multiple catalogs with data transfer.
    • However the semantics of the import and export are not well described, in the sense that the detailed format of the import and export steam are not sufficiently specified
    • Additionally the ability to synchronize existing data is not well-defined, for instance the catalog entities are missing the concept of external identification that would allow a source catalog to request an update of an entity that was already placed into a target catalog.
    We have a (rather large) list of potential improvements to make to TMF620 in version 5, we'll have to see what makes the cut. I don't know what timelines are planned for any such work.

    Hope this helps.

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    Jonathan Goldberg
    Amdocs Management Limited
    Any opinions and statements made by me on this forum are purely personal, and do not necessarily reflect the position of the TM Forum or my employer.
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    Action Week 2021


  • 16.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 11, 2020 02:49
    Looking forward the revised version of TMF 620. I feel this is  critcal aspect for Telcos to synchronize catalog data either receive or push from mutiple systems spanning from B2C/B2B landscape.  Complexity to sync data is high due  non consistence of data format .



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    khalid patel
    Capgemini
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    Action Week 2021


  • 17.  RE: Offer/Product catalog decoupled from the CRM

    TM Forum Member
    Posted Dec 11, 2020 07:06
    Edited by Arash Zolfaghari Dec 11, 2020 07:06
    Dear Jonathan,

    Is there any chance for us to have a look at that list of potential improvements on TMF620?

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    Arash Zolfaghari
    Tecnotree
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    Action Week 2021