eTOM - the Enhanced Telecom Operations Map

The enhanced Telecom Operations Map (eTOM) Business Process Framework serves as the blueprint for process direction and the starting point for development and integration of Business and Operations Support Systems (BSS and OSS respectively). The eTOM Framework also helps drive TM Forum member's work to develop NGOSS solutions.

For service providers, it provides a neutral reference point as they consider internal process reengineering needs, partnerships, alliances, and general working agreements with other providers.

For suppliers, the eTOM Framework outlines potential boundaries of software components, and the required functions, inputs, and outputs that must be supported by products.

This document consists of:

  • A description of the role of the eTOM Business Process Framework.
  •  An ebusiness context for service providers and the more complex Business Relationship Context Model required.
  •  A high-level business process framework and explanation of service provider enterprise processes and sub-processes that are top down, customer-centric, and end-to-end focused.
  • A total enterprise framework for service providers.
  • Process Decompositions of all processes from the highest conceptual view of the framework to the working level of the eTOM and many selected lower level decompositions in the Framework
  • Selected process flows and descriptions of the decomposed processes that include the process purpose or description, business rules, high level information and more.

The enhanced Telecom Operations Map (eTOM) is the most widely used and accepted standard for business process in the telecom industry. The eTOM describes the full scope of business processes required by a service provider and defines the key elements and how they interact, creating a guidebook that is fast becoming the common business language of the telecom industry.

Owner of the copyright: TeleManagement Forum (TM Forum):

Distribution: Used throughout the telecommunications business as the prime industry standard.

Origin/history: Product of the TeleManagement Forum, founded in 1988 as the OSI/Network Management Forum, that was responsible for the introduction of the SNMP/CMIP interworking package reflecting multi-protocol management environments across computing and telecom environments in 1994 and for the first version of the eTOM in 1998.

When: First version published in 1998.

Participants in the committee: The OSI/Network Management Forum was founded by Amdahl Corp, AT&T, British Telecom PLC, Hewlett-Packard Co, Northern Telecom, Inc, Telecom Canada, STC PLC and Unisys Corp. Currently, over 400 communications service providers, network operators, their hardware suppliers and their software suppliers participate in the development of the industry, through the forum.

Certification bodies? The TM Forum’s many seminars and training opportunities can now lead to the status of a TM Forum certified engineer, through the NGOSS accreditation program that was announced in November 2005.

More information: see the chapter eTOM - the Enhanced Telecom Operations Map, by Jan Hendriks, in the itSMF endorsed publication 'Frameworks for IT Management'.