Brady, Tim, Cobb, John and Davies, Andrew
Learning to Deliver Telecoms Infrastructure for the New Economy
In: 5th International Conference on Technology Policy and Innovation, 26-29 Jun 2001, The Hague, The Netherlands.
This paper shows how a telecommunications infrastructure provider, Cable & Wireless (C&W), has responded to changes in the external environment and has had to develop new capabilities as it re-learns how to deliver telecoms infrastructure that meets the demands of companies in the new global internet economy.
For many years, C&W was a typical telecommunications company selling mainly international voice services. De-regulation of the industry and rapid technological change have increased competition and changed the cost base of the industry. Major customers are going global and they want to source from key suppliers on a global basis. They want telecommunications services delivered end-to-end with guaranteed service levels. To begin with this involved C&W offering managed services, then later to providing network outsource, and on to providing IT and network outsource, and finally on to applications service provision as the gap between networks and computer operations closes. The advent of the Internet facilitated this globalisation process.
C&W has faced this challenge by completely re-organising itself. It has withdrawn from some markets such as mobile, residential and entertainment services to the public in order to focus solely on business-to-business customers. The rest of the paper describes these changes in the organisation, what C&W has learnt along the way, and how they tried to capture and transfer this learning.
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