MGI Research

Tuesday, Mar 31st

Last update06:04:46 PM GMT

Billing Solutions Buyer Guide Part I: Agility

Price : $395.00


Research Summary

A robust billing function has evolved into a must-have enterprise capability for companies of all sizes. A key driver behind this trend is the proliferation of new products and services and the business requirement for flexible, configurable billing solutions that can handle a wide variety of consumption-based and subscription-based business models, among others. Cloud-based solutions have had a democratizing impact, effectively leveling the playing field between large and small companies. Smaller organizations are now eyeing complex billing schemas previously only available to large enterprises with the resources to deploy sophisticated, high cost on premise billing systems. Equally, larger firms rolling out new business initiatives envy the agility of smaller, more nimble competitors and are attracted by the low initial costs and rapid time-to-market associated with cloud-based billing. Billing is one function in the middle of the intersection of a business and its customers. It is often a source of friction. A success or failure in billing can either elevate or sink a customer relationship, and impact market competitiveness. Business and IT leaders’ perception of billing is evolving from that of a back office “necessary evil” to a key business tool on the critical path to launch of new initiatives and one that has a dramatic impact on time-to-revenue.

Selecting an appropriate billing solution is more complex today, as the number of choices has expanded dramatically. For mid to large organizations, a six to nine month effort evaluating and testing various billing systems while spending several hundred thousand dollars in the process is not uncommon. In an effort to reduce the time, risk and cost of billing evaluation projects, we have created structured tools that together with MGI 360 Vendor Ratings help organizations assess technology solutions in a standardized fashion. In this multi-part Billing Solution Buyer’s Guide series we introduce the Billing Solution Evaluation Framework or B-SEF, - a methodology for business and IT organizations to optimize the billing solution se-lection process. B-SEF contains five major evaluation criteria:

  • FUNCTION – How broad and deep is the functional capability of a billing product?
  • COST – What is the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)?
  • AGILITY – How does a billing solution impact Time-to-Market (TTM)?
  • PERFORMANCE – What are the performance characteristics? - i.e. scala-bility, availability, security, etc.
  • SUPPLIER RATING – How stable and viable is the supplier? How easy is it to do business with?

Part I of the Billing Solutions Buyer’s Guide focuses on Agility – an area that often dominates the business discussion around billing. The Guide is aimed at business and information technology executives tasked with evaluating billing solutions. This part of the Guide provides advice on how to assess billing solutions for Agility.

Key Issues:

  • How will enterprise billing solutions evolve?
  • What are the key requirements for modern billing solutions?
  • What are the critical success factors for modern billing solutions?
  • Who are the winners and losers of the cloud billing market?

Billing solutions can have a substantial and differentiated impact on agility of a business. Agility is one of the five major criteria for assessing a fit of a billing solution for a specific business. The other four are Function, Cost, Performance and Vendor Rating. In Part I of MGI’s multi-part Buyer’s Guide we focused on one aspect of the overall evaluation process – assessment of an impact of a billing solution on agility.

We have broken agility down into three major components –

  • Business Agility,
  • Product Agility and
  • IT Agility.

Buyer’s Guides often focus on assessing vendor solutions against a fixed grid of criteria. Given how diverse businesses and their billing requirements are, we have deliberately stayed away from simplistic, perishable (and largely irrelevant) evaluations of numerous billing software offerings. Instead, we focus on how buyers can themselves construct a practical evaluation methodology that is durable and relevant to their company and industry. We used examples from MGI’s billing framework B-SEF as a guide for building an analysis of billing system options.

MGI’s Billing Software Universe The billing solutions industry is undergoing a fundamental shift as a new generation of billing vendors takes advantage of contemporary technologies and threatens to displace aging legacy solutions. With hundreds of interactions with users, a rigorous research methodology, MGI 360 Ratings and analysis of over 35 vendors MGI Research is uniquely positioned to help users; vendors and investors make more informed decisions.

Billing solutions market segments: simple recurring billing;

  • ecommerce;
  • subscription;
  • complex enterprise; and
  • telecoms/utilities customer support platforms.

Vendors under coverage (partial list):

  • Accumulus
  • Amdocs
  • Aria Systems
  • AsiaInfo-Linkage
  • Avangate
  • Chargify
  • Cleverbridge
  • Comverse
  • CSGI
  • Cycle30
  • Digital River
  • Ericsson
  • FuseBill
  • Magnaquest
  • MetraTech
  • Monexa
  • NetCracker
  • NetSuite
  • Oracle
  • Orga Systems
  • Recurly
  • RevChain
  • Revstream
  • SAP
  • TechnoTree
  • Transverse
  • Vindicia
  • Zuora