Traditional Operations Support Systems (OSSs) were mainframe-based systems designed to support service provided to automate their daily jobs such as order processing, line assignment, line testing and billing, etc. The complementary term Business Support Systems (BSS) is a newer term and typically refers to “business systems” dealing with customers, supporting processes such as taking orders, processing bills, and collecting payments.
hen the function of IT and network become overlap and almost merge, the solution for OSS and BSS shall have different point of view.
Now, networks and services are more complicated, more flexible, and service provider offer a range of differentiated products. OSS and BSS must liaise over what could be ordered by the customer, based on what service they already had, based on the network they would use, based on current available resources, based on how far they were from the telephone exchange, etc. Offering a customer a service is now a negotiation between the commercial products managed by BSS and the ability of OSS (and the local network) to deliver certain products.
As a result, a number of systems now straddle OSS/BSS:
Service Assurance systems are now integrated across OSS/BSS in order to track service performance and ensure customer service-level agreements (SLA) are met. Service Assurance may also pro-actively identify network failures, initiating resolution action and notifying high-priority customers. Service Catalogs give the service provider one place to list products offered to customers and define what network resources can be used to deliver the service. Service Catalogs offer product managers a tool that joins-up the service offering and fulfillment processes across BSS and OSS. Service Management applications allow greater interaction between OSS and BSS processes when the service order and fulfillment process is complex. If a service order comprises multiple technical resources, which are delivered by multiple OSS systems, Service Management is responsible for orchestrating the fulfilment process and keeping the customer-facing team informed about progress, changes or deliver issues.