MEF and TM Forum create new collaboration model to accelerate delivery of on-demand, cloud-centric connectivity services

Date: Wed, 04/15/2015 - 09:46

The MEF and TM Forum have entered a landmark collaboration program to accelerate the shift to dynamic and assured connectivity services orchestrated over more automated, interconnected networks. To do this, they are leveraging their respective expertise, globally adopted standards, and best practices to benefit their members as well as the wider digital business community

MEF and TM Forum create new collaboration model to accelerate delivery of on-demand, cloud-centric connectivity services

Service and technology experts from companies who are members of both organizations have forged a more structured, yet pragmatic, collaboration model and a comprehensive plan to maximize synergies and the use of standardized assets. Progress will be formally monitored by the organizations on a quarterly basis.
“This is an exciting and ambitious new model for collaboration between two communities that have long worked to ease the integration of infrastructure, systems, and software,“ said Nik Willetts, Chief Digital Officer, TM Forum.
“Cooperation between MEF and TM Forum is not accidental, but natural and essential,” said Philippe Lalande, Director, Industry Collaborations, Oracle. “Service providers and vendors cannot afford a fragmented standardization landscape – it’s too slow and resource-intensive. This more intimate and proactive collaboration model will speed progress for all stakeholders as they don’t need to duplicate time, effort, and resources in dealing with each organization separately on similar issues and goals.”

The collaboration program includes:
Coordination on NFV, LSO, and SDN-Related Work Streams
•TM Forum and MEF are responding to service providers’ drive to deploy Network Functions Virtualization (NFV), Lifecycle Service Orchestration (LSO), and Software-Defined Networking (SDN) technologies by bringing together their work streams related to these networking solutions.

•TM Forum’s ZOOM (for zero-touch orchestration, operation, and management) NFV initiative is a pragmatic approach to integrating NFV with existing systems in a complex hybrid environment.

•MEF’s Third Network LSO initiative is focused on defining the orchestration and management capabilities and supporting APIs required to streamline and automate the entire network service lifecycle in a sustainable fashion. LSO is key to providing coordinated end-to-end management and control for existing network, NFV, and SDN implementations.

•?The two technical teams from the TM Forum and MEF now pro-actively exchange views, almost on a daily basis, and work jointly on APIs, information modeling, use cases and business processes, metrics, conformance requirements, and proofs of concept.

Multi-SDO Proof of Concept Demonstration
•During 1 – 4 June, members of the TM Forum and MEF will participate in the first multi-standards development organization Catalyst demonstration ever held at TM Forum Live! This pioneering project – Zero Touch Network-as-a-Service: Agile, Assured, and Orchestrated with NFV – is championed by the MEF, PCCW Global, Charter Communications, and Axtel and involves technology solutions provided by project leader Oracle, InfoVista, and Juniper Networks.

•The project will demonstrate a radically simplified user experience via self-ordering for a complex Carrier Ethernet service. It will have zero-touch orchestration and full integration with critical business and operation processes, across a hybrid network with both physical and virtualized (NFV) infrastructure, including virtualized customer premises equipment (vCPE) functions.

•“This catalyst is a realization of MEF-defined use cases supporting our Third Network vision and LSO approach,” said Daniel Bar-Lev, Director of Strategic Programs, MEF. “As this work is aligned, by design, with TM Forum ZOOM program and ETSI NFV work, our service provider members know that they can begin to deploy commercial-ready agile, assured, and orchestrated network service offerings now.

MEF Use of TM Forum’s Digital Services Toolkit
•The MEF Community is using the Digital Services Toolkit developed by TM Forum to help business and operations stakeholders quickly and easily find the Frameworxassets they need, based on their particular business context and issues. Used by more than 90 percent of network operators around the world, Frameworx is TM Forum’s suite of blueprints, best practices, and tools evolved in its Collaboration Community.

•“Having a standard Toolkit helps us create, evolve, and monetize services rapidly by reducing the complexity of partner interactions associated with end-to-end service delivery,” commented Shahar Steiff, AVP New Technologies, PCCW Global and MEF Service Operations Committee Co-Chair and MEF Board member.

•John Wilmes, Director, Open Digital Ecosystem Project, TM Forum, added, “We achieved a lot in only one day during our first joint workshop covering the Digital Services Toolkit. The MEF business context and use cases are so detailed that we received inputs to progress the Toolkit immediately.

As part of the MEF UNITE Program, Philippe leads the relationship with TM Forum. He summed up: ”From day one, this collaboration spans a large portion of the MEF scope of work, including the evolution of mature Carrier Ethernet standards, the Service Operations Guidelines (MEF 50), and the execution of the MEF Third Network & LSO vision. Many TM Forum assets are already being used in this context, and we expect that MEF-defined use cases will evolve and enhance TM Forum best practices in a reciprocal fashion.”

Above, Daniel Bar-Lev, Director of Strategic Programs, MEF

Image credited to MEF

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