3 min read

Here Are the Billing Trends to Watch For in 2022

By Marc Wullings on Nov 30, 2021 9:28:21 AM

Our year at Good Sign has been extremely exciting. Billing as an industry is gearing up and we have seen an enormous push in interest in our field of business. So, what trends do we see and expect to further develop in 2022? And why should you also be more excited about billing?

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3 min read

Trends In Billing Technology - Adapting Customer Centricity

By Petri Takala on Nov 23, 2021 12:52:35 PM

The Age of Customer Centricity

The customer is always right, but there has never been a time when the customer had so many options to be right in decision-making. Today, the customer has an endless number of options available and smooth access to data needed to make decisions. With the rise of the subscription economy, customers can evaluate their decisions, and suppliers need to prove themselves all over again to stay in business. What does this mean from a billing perspective? And what tech options do you have to keep up with these challenges?

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3 min read

Embracing Industry 4.0 in Billing

By Marc Wullings on Nov 17, 2021 9:45:00 AM

The Accelerated Pace Of IoT Adaption

As a central part of Industry 4.0, digitalization has been supercharged with the usage of IoT. Studies show that manufacturing companies see favorable use cases for IoT and are planning to increase IoT in their processes.

Smart Factory or optimization, supply chain, and customer service are the most mentioned areas where investments are made. In this blog, we talk about putting all this sensor data into use, from a billing perspective.

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4 min read

What 2021 Has Taught Us About Billing

By Marc Wullings on Nov 10, 2021 12:09:09 PM

As we near the end of 2021, we have to say most companies are back in full swing and the economy is on the rise again. We have seen some profound changes in the way we do business, and billing has certainly taken a central stage in business transformation.

Many changes are here to stay, and we meet a lot of companies who are struggling to keep up with the new world in their core systems. Here are the 9 top themes we heard our customers talk about.

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2 min read

How Billing Can Be A Showstopper In Your Time To Market

By Petri Takala on Oct 5, 2021 10:33:46 AM

New Models, New Pricing, New Billing?

Todays’ innovation pace is faster than ever before in history. That is reflected in the record time time-to-market cycles for products and services all around the world. On top of this, we have recently seen a pricing revolution following the as-a-service, pay-per-use and, subscription economy.

How do you keep up with your competitor from an operations point of view as a finance executive? In this blog, we discuss an unexpected bottleneck in your rollout: the billing system.

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2 min read

Agile Billing As A Key Orchestrator For Servitization

By Petri Takala on Sep 29, 2021 1:00:00 PM

The Servitization Business Promise

Servitization has been around for years but has recently really started to get traction. The reasons are clear. For example, in many manufacturing companies, the profitability of services is estimated at 2-5 times higher than products, and analysts say that 75% of the companies expect that servitization will dominate their business in the future. However, only 30% of the companies have an active servitization strategy (*).

In this blog, we look at the threshold to full servitization from a billing perspective. 


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3 min read

What Is So Special About Managed Service Providers’ Billing

By Petri Takala on Sep 17, 2021 8:45:00 AM

Since MIT offered the first Managed Service Provider (MSP) functions in the ’60s, the industry has grown and evolved tremendously both in revenue and in the offering. Today, the MSP business represents a 242,9 billion dollar market and it is expected to grow to 354,8 billion by 2026 (1).

What makes MSP billing special, and how can you, as an MSP, capitalize on the growth with the right billing? We cover these topics in this blog.

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2 min read

Tackle Your ERP Billing Issues Without Using a Band-Aid

By Taija Engman on Jun 30, 2021 10:00:00 AM

Yes, you want recurring billing, but your ERP and legacy systems do not provide the pricing and rating flexibility to cater for subscriptions and pay-per-use and to deliver that type of invoicing.

We hear this a lot from our clients. So, what was their solution? Often, they had ventured the slippery path of a quick workaround (or two or three): An excel sheet to consolidate data to recalculate the correct pricing. Some RPA to speed up the process. Some manual work. How feasible is it moving forward?

In this blog, we will argue that the cost of a quick band-aid to a deep-rooted problem will be higher than solving it with a real, fundamental solution.

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2 min read

Why Customers Think Billing Should Be Part Of the Revops Strategy

By Marc Wullings on Jun 22, 2021 9:35:39 AM

Billing Really Is Part Of Your Customer Process

Over the past 10 years, the CX landscape has changed dramatically. Where older CRM systems handed over to ERP when the client signed the deal, we now look much broader to the whole lifecycle of the client.

Funnily enough, billing sits firmly on the ERP side, under the responsibility of the CFO. How feasible is this in 2021?

In this blog, we will argue that your client thinks that billing is part of the journey, and what opportunities this brings for you and your customers. 

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3 min read

What Should a Billing System Look Like from an IT Perspective

By Petri Takala on Jun 15, 2021 8:45:00 AM

Billing Needs Flexibility, Bridging ERP And CRM

We recently had a great conversation with Igor Stenmark, the billing expert at MGI Research, and discussed the role of billing in a modern ICT environment. One thing became immediately clear: billing solutions nowadays need to be agile to adapt quickly to business changes, and therefore deserve their place in the ICT infrastructure. Read about Igor’s reasoning below.

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3 min read

Automating the Contract-To-Cash Process at OpusCapita

By Heikki Hirvensalo on Jun 11, 2021 12:00:00 PM

How to gain proper visibility to your service contract-to-cash process? How to automate pricing and billing of a wide legacy contract base and yet create a feeling of control and trust that no revenue is leaking?

Opus Capita, a leading European provider of source-to-pay and e-invoicing solutions, set out to do that. Their goal was to be transparent and efficient in their contract-to-cash process.

In this blog, we describe how OpusCapita captured a wide legacy contract base and transformed it into a future-proof automated service monetization process.

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2 min read

Optimize Business Decisions Using Your Billing Data

By Marc Wullings on Jun 2, 2021 12:15:00 PM

Data-driven decision-making has been the holy grail since the inception of business analytics. Many years and management books later, the old phrasing “garbage in, garbage out” still seems as valid as on day one. So where do you find relevant data? In this blog we argue you are sitting on it: use your billing data for decision making.

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3 min read

What Experts Say About Service Billing In 2021

By Petri Takala on May 18, 2021 8:45:00 AM

There has been a lot of dynamics in the billing industry, and most growth evolves around service billing. Many companies have created as-a-service models or even moved completely to subscription billing. Still, service billing is much more than just those two areas, as mature service organizations can tell.

In this blog, we will look at the latest trends after a conversation with Igor Stenmark, the billing expert from MGI Research.

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3 min read

Flexible Billing Platform Enables Modern Services

By Petri Takala on May 5, 2021 9:00:00 AM

The City Of Lahti Enables Personal Carbon Trading

How do you involve your citizens in becoming carbon-neutral and give them control in achieving this goal? The Finnish city of Lahti, European Green Capital in 2021, set out to do just that. Its goal is to be a carbon-neutral city by 2025, meaning ten years earlier than, for example, the Finnish state and most other cities. In this blog, we describe how a billing platform became a key instrument to give citizens control.

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3 min read

Automated Billing Can Be A Money Maker

By Petri Takala on Apr 19, 2021 8:45:00 AM

You Win Some, You Lose Some

Revenue is the result of doing things right. After hard-fought sales battles, optimized production of service processes, and client satisfaction, the moment comes to reap the benefits of the hard work.

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3 min read

Billing Is Boring, And That Is How We Like It

By Marc Wullings on Apr 8, 2021 9:00:00 AM

Just another day at the office

When you think of excitement at the office, the billing department typically doesn’t come to mind. Producing invoices in large numbers, monitoring payments, and reporting on them is the main task of an underwhelmed corporate function.

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3 min read

How To Use IoT Data From A Billing Perspective

By Petri Takala on Mar 23, 2021 8:45:00 AM

Making Best Use Of Iot Usage Data

Over the last years, IoT data has become common in business. IoT has enabled businesses to optimize their existing processes and to create new business models around the constant flow of IoT-created data, taking advantage of the accurate and actual usage data. How is it done best?

In this blog, we will discuss the best practices we see at our clients when implementing IoT data from a billing perspective.

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2 min read

Why Is Subscription Billing So 2020

By Petri Takala on Mar 11, 2021 3:15:00 PM

Out with the old and in with the new. Subscription billing has changed our business models forever. But after the turmoil in 2020, the as-a-service economy is moving into pay-per-use and bespoke propositions to better align with client needs.

How can you provide flexibility to your clients and maintain the recurring revenue? In this blog, we discuss the limitations of subscription billing and what to do going forward.

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3 min read

Contract Management Is Core In Recurring Billing

By Petri Takala on Mar 4, 2021 9:55:21 AM

Contracts Are often overlooked in subscription and recurring billing

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4 min read

Here Is Why Your Clients Keep Complaining About Invoices

By Petri Takala on Feb 5, 2021 9:00:00 AM

For your Largest clients, your bill is the mirror of your standards

Talk to your clients, and they will all agree, their satisfaction with your products or services is directly related to your pricing. But it is not just your price-quality ratio. It is also your price as presented by the invoices you send. Invoice verification is a moment of truth in the client relationship. Clients don’t just want a fair price. They also demand transparency of the invoice and the use of the services leading to the invoice.

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3 min read

From Traditional Services Billing To A Proactive Process

By Petri Takala on Jan 26, 2021 2:30:00 PM

There is a good chance that billing is considered a routine job in your company, recurring after the end of each month. The process is reactive and consists of repetitive, execution-oriented tasks.

But what if you look at it differently? In this blog, we will explain what treasures you can find, if you transform your billing into a proactive process.
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3 min read

Experts' Advice On Choosing an Agile Billing System

By Marc Wullings on Jan 19, 2021 9:00:00 AM

Agile Billing, The Cornerstone Or Stumbling Block In Your Business Strategy?

We have all discovered the need to quickly adapt to new business models and to pragmatically introduce new ways to deal with sudden events.
Often, the billing system turns out to be the stumbling block. For example, your billing system might have been part of an original ERP rollout years ago, and your needs have since changed.
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3 min read

Challenges In Transparency And Compliance – Taija Engman Video Blog

By Anitta Maltela on Dec 7, 2020 8:45:00 AM

Taija has discussed the common pain points in recurring revenue monetization in a video blog series.

This time she talks about the challenges in providing a single source of truth for the services billed. Transparent truth for the customers. Transparent truth for the IFRS and GAAP compliance.

The video is for you, if you offer subscriptions, pay-per-use, or contract-based services. And also when your company is looking to join the significant as-a-service business transformation.

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3 min read

Billing Problems Cause Unhappy Customers - Taija Engman's Video Blog

By Anitta Maltela on Nov 23, 2020 9:00:00 AM

Taija Engman, CEO of Good Sign continues her video blogging about pain points in recurring revenue, with her dog Bea, from a lakeside in Finland. 

Billing Problems Hurt Customer Satisfaction
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4 min read

Why Agile Billing Is The Key To Future-Proofing Your Business

By Marc Wullings on Nov 19, 2020 9:11:09 AM

Companies have been confronted with dramatic shifts in demand as Covid-19 has disrupted our lives and our markets. This disruption is felt in the service business, where demand shifts directly impact operations, with far-reaching consequences.

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3 min read

Slow Time To Market - Video Blog By Taija Engman

By Anitta Maltela on Nov 13, 2020 8:30:00 AM

Taija Engman, CEO of Good Sign continues her video blogging about pain points in recurring revenue, with her dog Bea, from lakeside in Finland. This video is about:

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2 min read

Too Much Manual Work In Service Billing - Video Blog By Taija Engman

By Anitta Maltela on Nov 5, 2020 1:00:00 PM

Taija Engman, with her dog Bea, talks about how manual processes in pricing and billing cause delays and errors.

When any service content, change and price-related aspects of a contract are left to manual administration, it easily means costs, delays, errors, revenue leakage, and more customer complaints. 

Taijas vlog about manual work


Most companies in the recurring revenue business suffer from too much manual work and slow cash flow.

If you run a recurring revenue business model or if you are introducing new subscription-, pay-per-use- or contract-based business, you likely face this pain point of too much manual work and slow cashflow in your business.

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3 min read

Taija Engman Video Blogs About Revenue Leakage

By Anitta Maltela on Oct 29, 2020 8:30:00 AM

Taija Engman, CEO of Good Sign accompanied by Bea, the dog, continues her lakeside video blogging about 5 most common pain points in service billing. This second video is about Revenue Leakage, which is a huge challenge in many companies in recurring revenue business. Click the video to watch.

Taija vlogs about revenue leakage
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4 min read

10 Billing Trends To Watch For In 2021

By Petri Takala on Oct 23, 2020 9:00:00 AM

It is probably safe to say that 2020 has thrown us a few curveballs due to Covid-19. Businesses had to adapt in a very short time, and now at the end of the year, we can see clear trends in this shaken-up economy. Many changes are here to stay, and we meet a lot of prospects who are struggling to keep up with the new world in their core systems.

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3 min read

Taija Engman Video Blogs About Pain Points in Service Billing

By Anitta Maltela on Oct 20, 2020 9:30:00 AM

Taija Engman, CEO, and co-founder of Good Sign talks about service billing in a video blog series of 6 episodes, filmed at her family cottage at lakeside in Finland. The first session is about the five most common pain points in the recurring revenue business model.

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4 min read

Why Excel Is the Snake in Your Billing Paradise

By Marc Wullings on Sep 7, 2020 10:37:00 AM

Excel Is Everywhere, And For The Right Reasons

As a finance professional, you will probably spend a generous amount of time using Microsoft Excel, especially to collect data and to prepare and consolidate for billing cycles. And you are not the only one, since Excel is one of the most popular and widely used tools Microsoft has to offer. It’s a quick, reliable, and efficient way to fill the gaps between different systems, much needed, especially when billing services and data come from different source systems. But it is also a key signal that your systems no longer keep up with your billing needs. Let us explain why. 

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4 min read

The Fine Art of Monetizing Services

By Petri Takala on Aug 27, 2020 9:33:28 AM

How to optimize revenue for your service business with the help of your billing system?

Services Are The Key To Lasting Business Success

In today’s economy, the best-valued companies typically are service organizations or provide a large part of their offering in services. We have seen the rise of the subscription economy, servitization, and the X-as-a-Service, and of course, the digital services industries, including the well-known marketplaces.

What makes services exciting is the lasting nature of the customer relationship in service business models. Done well, services provide a higher margin for companies, provided you have a clear eye on the cost of service delivery. In this blog, we look at the trends and aspects of Service Monetization.

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4 min read

5 Common Pain Points in Service Billing and How to Avoid Them

By Marc Wullings on Jun 17, 2020 8:30:00 AM

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3 min read

What Your Servitzation Strategy Means To Your Billing

By Janne Kivilaakso on Jun 4, 2020 10:15:00 AM

A Perfect Invoice That Matches a Perfect Service Experience 

The rise of servitization in short: changing product-driven business models to more service or outcome-driven, has led to great opportunities in the manufacturing industry. Themes like Industry 4.0 and IoT-driven demand have opened opportunities for manufacturing to create an additional recurring revenue stream. Manufacturers transform their business models to better align themselves with the needs of their clients. But what does this mean for their billing and monetization?

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3 min read

Billing Beyond Company Boundaries

By Marc Wullings on May 28, 2020 10:15:00 AM

How Ecosystem Businesses Thrive and Create New Challenges for Agile Billing

In a recent article, Harvard Business Review explains how businesses driven by eco-systems have a competitive advantage.

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2 min read

Service Billing Done Manually Hurts Customer Satisfaction

By Petri Takala on May 19, 2020 2:15:00 PM

Billing Automation Ensures the Quality of Invoicing

When any billing department collects information about service usage and manually assures correct rates and prices, there will be revenue leaks and errors. When pricing and billing of services are done manually, customer complaints cannot be avoided.

In this blog, I will discuss billing execution in the recurring revenue business model: Manual steps in billing versus automation. I will also highlight why billing automation is the only way to ensure the quality of invoicing and thus improve customer satisfaction.

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3 min read

5 Signs When a Billing System Cannot Keep Up With New Business Models

By Marc Wullings on May 12, 2020 11:00:00 AM

Your business is agile, is your billing system - Look for these Signs

Your business is ever-changing in the fast-paced world, and technology is opening up new business opportunities at exponential speed. Anything-as-a-service, servitization, multi-supplier propositions, just to mention a few. Your company wants to be part of it, and you want to capitalize on the innovation. Great, just ensure your old billing system is not holding you back.

Based on our conversations with clients and partners, we summarized 5 signs you might need to look for to improve your billing capabilities to delight your customers. And of course, some tips to solve these headaches.

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2 min read

Next-Gen Billing Goes Beyond Subscriptions

By Marc Wullings on Apr 21, 2020 2:30:00 PM

Is your system ready for pay-per-use and other models?

Subscription billing has taken our economy by storm, and probably you have also embraced the subscription economy. With the anything-as-a-service, it was paramount to ride the recurring revenue wave and to make your products and services available as a subscription. But has it delivered to the promise? And have you seen the results from your subscription billing? In this blog, we discuss the limitations of subscription billing and where to go from here.

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3 min read

How to bring new services to market quickly

By Heikki Hirvensalo on Apr 2, 2020 11:00:00 AM

Do you think it takes too long to launch new services?

A manufacturing company was actively seeking growth through new digital services. Digital Service Development Manager was hired with the responsibility to define new service concepts and earning models to complement existing revenue streams. In 100 days, a fresh business concept was presented. However, a key member of the deciding body said to the development manager: “Looks nice on paper, but implementation is simply too hard. Considering our data, processes, and systems, it will never become a profitable business.” The concept was aborted in the next business review.

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4 min read

MacGyver Would Have Taped IT-Tools Together - Why You Should Not

By Taija Engman on Mar 24, 2020 8:45:00 AM

The TV hero MacGyver carries duct tape and a Swiss Army Knife for fixing any issue that comes ahead. Many companies seem to use duct tape solutions for invoicing recurring revenue. ERP, Excel, custom databases, CPQ and RPA are not enough.

Why you should avoid the use of duct tape solutions in billing the recurring revenue?:

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3 min read

Modernize Your Quote-to-Cash Process – Enjoy Big Financial Results

By Taija Engman on Mar 9, 2020 2:00:00 PM

Monetize 13 is the only event in Europe focusing purely on monetization, including payments, commerce, billing, and CPQ. 

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4 min read

It Is All About The Customers - The Decade of Servitization Just Begun

By Anitta Maltela on Mar 2, 2020 9:48:00 AM

Are you ready for 2020?

According to a World Economic Forum prediction, products will have become services by 2030. The servitization is on its way as more and more products are sold as services.

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2 min read

Lovable Invoices

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Feb 13, 2020 1:00:00 PM

It is no news that you should never ignore the importance of customer satisfaction. The news is that invoices can be so lovable that you can surpass your customer expectations.

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3 min read

How to make your service ecosystem work?

By Janne Kivilaakso on Feb 3, 2020 9:00:00 AM

Why an ecosystem in the first place? 

What are the 7 qualities of supporting software?

Parties forming a service ecosystem, understand that by combining their strengths they can serve their common clientele better than without one.

A service ecosystem is centrally operated and targets are shared. All parties add value to it and receive value from it. 

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2 min read

3 BELIEFS that Eat Margins and Growth in Service Business

By Anitta Maltela on Jan 23, 2020 1:50:00 PM

Make billing transparent to your customers. Don't rely on a crystal ball for truth!

Photo: Aleksi Friman, Calcus.com

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4 min read

Automated Flexibility To Scale Your Service Business

By Janne Kivilaakso on May 14, 2019 1:28:16 PM

Scalability is a common factor to fast growing and profitable service businesses. It is not only about the ability to manage changes in volume. It also calls for capabilities to quickly respond to market changes with service content and pricing flexibility. And it is also about lowering unit costs when volumes grow. In my blog post Why Scalability Matters in Service business I talked about scalability and what it means. This time I will share some best practises you should consider when moving towards automated monetization.

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2 min read

Technopolis’ Service Ecosystem

By Taija Engman on Apr 11, 2019 1:54:31 PM

Technopolis implemented Good Sign solution to its Service Ecosystem with Flexible Pricing, Customer Onboarding and Billing for the internationally growing UMA Workspace services.

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4 min read

Pricing and Billing Automation - 10 Benefits Explained Shortly

By Hannele Peltonen on Apr 9, 2019 8:50:00 AM

Last week we published a blog post: “10 Reasons You Should Invest in Flexible Pricing and Billing”. I thought to continue about that, by explaining the reasons in some depth and give grounds for the benefits that come along after automating a flexible pricing and billing process.

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3 min read

10 Reasons You Should Invest in Flexible Pricing and Billing

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Apr 4, 2019 12:42:43 PM

Customer demands change and market evolves. Service businesses are gaining new grounds, but also competition grows strong.

All service businesses should consider: Are we offering our customers the services they desire? Do we satisfy changing customer needs fast enough with new service offerings? Is our pricing model competitive and optimal? Is our billing process up to par? 

If not, it is never too early to start automation.

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3 min read

13 Symptoms Indicating Need to Fix Pricing, Billing and Monetization

By Taija Engman on Feb 27, 2019 8:29:56 AM

just recently represented Good Sign Solutions at European Monetize 11 event in Amsterdam. The event concentrated in modern monetization capabilities, which are needed when organizations are adopting new business models and growing services.

I will share three of the event highlights like a practical list of 13 symptoms that indicate the need of fixing pricing, billing and monetization

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10 min read

The Problem with Billing Automation is Data Quality - How to Fix It? [Get your free guide]

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Feb 6, 2019 11:36:00 AM

When and Why to Automate Billing Process? 

We all know that process automation requires data. Service Billing Automation is also based on data.

For example customer data, service configuration data, pricing data, service status data and transaction data are all drivers for the right billing outcome.

Data quality is many times a question mark in organizations and a (bad) reason to postpone automation of the billing process.

Except for online sales, billing is often the last step in the customer process. Traditionally it was okay to fix billing semi-manually in a back office function. This often requires a lot of actions and manual labor. As a result, also revenue leakage and errors are common.

At the same time, marketing, sales and service delivery processes are running in world-class solutions. So, how can you improve the data quality so that also billing can run world-class?

Get your free step-by-step guide for automated billing

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4 min read

How to Offer Mass Customized Services Effectively?

By Markus Pulliainen on Nov 13, 2018 2:35:16 PM

In this article we are focusing the mass customization, from a theoretical point of view and also how it is done with Good Sign service solutions. In the nutshell we are defining the process about: "What do I need to be effective in mass customized business?".

Effective mass customization is based on understanding customer needs for mass customization, and implementing mass customized services properly. [Nikolaus Franke & Frank T. Piller: 2002]

Shall we take a look at the mass customizing theory and how mass customization is applied in physical products and in services?

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4 min read

A Monetization Wizard every Service Business needs [DOWNLOAD]

By Jouko Keränen on Oct 31, 2018 12:30:56 PM

Monetization Wizard for Service Business Billing Automation

Picture by Jouko Keränen from "Russell Harty Plus" UK TV show of The Who performing Relay, 1973.

Keith Moon, the legendary drummer for the rock band The Who, was all over the place on his drum kit. Some people thought he was a looney. That’s not true, he was a wizard and knew what he was doing. Like an orchestra or a group of several musicians within one man.

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3 min read

Why Integrated Financial Automation is the Next Level in Service Management?

By Petri Takala on Aug 14, 2018 6:58:00 AM

Service Businesses Deserve Financial Automation

Companies recognize the importance of service quality and the significance of the processes behind it. These are key elements from both the customer’s and from the internal point of view.

Also, it's essential to analyze costs, budget and set prices properly. Actually, a good pricing strategy complemented with ability to close deals using also customized pricing elements is an essential source of customer satisfaction.  

Service Management systems are here today to support the service processes. The Next level of Service Management is Integrated Financial Automation.



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4 min read

Monetizing IoT? Creating Recurring Revenue!

By Markus Pulliainen on Jun 12, 2018 7:13:00 AM

Monetizing IoT

Many companies are contemplating how to monetize IoT solutions, and how new data-driven opportunities are changing the characteristics of products and services.

I just recently read two articles related to monetizing IoT. First one was PWC´s white paper about Monetizing the Industrial Internet of Things and the second was Forbes's SAPVoice article about 4 Supply Chain Strategies to Drive Digital Transformation. I will bring forward some highlights from these articles, and elaborate further on some ideas. 

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4 min read

Why ERP Is Not Smart Enough with Recurring Revenue?

By Janne Kivilaakso on May 15, 2018 7:05:00 AM

Good ERP system is an essential tool to support product sales, manufacturing, warehousing, delivery and billing.

However, the ERP mode of operation ‘A Leads to B’, does not support scalable transformation to recurring revenue business models. Specifically, the kind of services requiring advanced variable usage-based pricing are difficult for ERP systems.

Have you ever wondered why this is? 

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3 min read

Does Buying Behavior Change Faster Than Ability to Create Offering?

By Janne Kivilaakso on Apr 18, 2018 7:17:00 AM

The other day I attended an event where sales coach Mika D. Rubanovitsch @Rubanovitsch was talking about sales, marketing and customer behavior.

His key statement was that the buying behavior of customers is changing way faster than companies’ ability to create desirable offering.

This led me to a thinking process pondering what and why - and how to avoid such.

Who Drives the Offering?

Should we trash what we learnt in business school about strategically developing our offering to the focal point matching our core competency and the needs of our carefully selected customer segment(s)? Hitting the sweet spot produces such a compelling reason to buy that success follows automatically.

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2 min read

Mobility as a Service, the Good, the Bad, the Ugly?

By Kasper Ilmolahti on Mar 8, 2018 7:32:00 AM

This blog outlines the opportunities of Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and the challenges in applying MaaS in a local scope. Additionally, what is perhaps of the highest interest, I will also describe a real-life case example from the South Carelia region. 

The Good

Mobility as a Service (MaaS) is going to transform the way we experience traveling, commuting, and ultimately, the way how we perceive vehicle ownership. New door-to-door services are emerging combining physical mobility and digital services to produce high-quality amenities to meet the users’ needs. As the connectivity grows, more and more transport service chains will work seamlessly together forming a comprehensive grid for customers to travel as they please.

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3 min read

IoT and New Flexible Service Business Models

By Markus Pulliainen on Feb 28, 2018 7:17:00 AM

Tactical and Strategic IoT Business Goals

When I wrote my master’s thesis about “Defining IoT business models in B2B” I did not yet have a full view on how this kind of services are affecting daily business operations. One major point in my thesis was that companies have two viewpoints: tactical and strategic. Tactical goals a company wants to achieve straight away. Strategic goals are the targets linked to the company vision.

I am now enjoying a hands-on view to digital opportunities. After joining Good Sign, my daily work is about implementing Good Sign’s service business solution for companies to make it easy and fast to achieve tactical targets while bringing the capabilities to achieve strategic goals.

What Tactical and Strategic Wins Can IoT Bring to B2B Business?

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2 min read

How to Efficiently Monetize Your ServiceNow Items?

By Petri Takala on Feb 8, 2018 11:36:27 AM

Certified ServiceNow integration for pricing, billing and monetization

Service Transformation Calls for New Business Systems

Since its birth in 2004 ServiceNow has pioneered its way to position as leading IT Service Management (ITSM) software. And beyond!

ServiceNow is not limited to IT Services but is implemented in many other industries with increasing frequency.

We are living in an era of services transformation and growth - “Servitization”. Service management tools now easily take their place among the essential operational business systems

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2 min read

CFO Surveys Reveal: Companies Capitalizing on Subscriptions & Services Economy

By Taija Engman on Jan 25, 2018 7:22:00 AM

As-a-Service Business Is Growing

Read almost any survey or research paper touching business models: service transformation is clearly visible.

There may be several terms used when discussing growth of services and new service business models, for example: 

  • Service transformation
  • Recurring revenue business model
  • Service business growth
  • Subscription and services economy
  • SaaS
  • Internet of Services
  • Digital Services
  • Disruption 

No matter the terms used, the growing trend towards selling and procuring as-a-service is clear.

Below are two examples: a survey by CFO Research and a study by Forrester.

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3 min read

Recurring Revenue – Easy or Difficult?

By Petri Takala on Nov 28, 2017 7:39:00 AM

From Products to Smooth Services

The World Economic Forum has anticipated that all products will have become services by the year 2030. This is quite a bold statement but as you look around we are heading towards an outcome economy at an increasing speed.

Take a look at for example the traffic and transportation industry, which is facing the biggest changes in the last 100 years. The strongest drivers are clearly visible: 

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2 min read

Connected Data Enables New Recurring Revenue Business

By Taija Engman on Sep 21, 2017 9:07:00 AM

From Product Design to Service Design

Design used to be associated with tangible materials like wood and glass and plastic and metal: Rococo craftsmen carving the legs of a chair to a certain shape. Designer Aalto creating a vase of glass. Aarnio’s Ball Chair designed in the1960’s in a wave of plastic furniture design. Metal used in the consumer electronics from toasters to cell phones.

Today, services are growing in importance. Moving from selling products to service business is an on-going phenomena.

This service transformation is also manifesting itself in the rise of service design.


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4 min read

Contract is the Service Business Operations Engine in the Digital Era

By Taija Engman on Jun 28, 2017 10:04:59 AM

Contract Documents Have a New Meaning in the Digital Era

If you were asked to visualize a contract, would you think of a pile of paper with hand written signatures? If asked to visualize a digitalized contract, would you think of a scanned document at a digital contract archive?

Quite likely yes. In the old day contracts were signed papers. These papers had to be retained carefully for archives. Then arrived digitizing where contracts were converted from paper to a digital form such as a pdf-file and archived digitally. This sort of digitizing is not very interesting any more.

Today we buzz about digital transformation, which makes or breaks entire businesses. What is this new digitalization? What is a contract in the digital era?


Digitalizing Service Business

Truly digitalized contracts play an essential part in the forerunner continuous service businesses of today. Contracts are still agreed between the contracting parties just like in the old day, but the agreed pricing conditions and other contract terms are digitalized.

Thus, the conditions and terms of an agreement can now be digitally represented with rules. The rules automatically calculate pricing and drive orchestrated fulfilment actions depending on how the different factors actualize in the contract environment. 

Pricing conditions, service delivery terms, service level agreements and other contract conditions of a digitalized contract can be extremely flexible. If similar levels of variability are attempted without a true service business system, it usually leads to Excel spreadsheets and Post-it notes becoming an essential part of the process.

As long as the rules can be defined and data of the prevailing factors can be obtained, the end results can be derived and driven automatically. - Even if factors are changing dynamically based on usage-volume, outcome, demand or the changing weather conditions... and different from one customer to another.

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3 min read

How to Close “Buyer – Seller Perception Gap” in Monetizing Pay per Use and Outcome

By Taija Engman on Jun 7, 2017 2:41:04 PM

“Customer expectations have been permanently upgraded”, stated Henrik Ehrnrooth, President & CEO of KONE Corporation in his opening key note at the Manufacturing Performance Days 2017 summit last week.

He voiced that companies can no longer sell what they have; they must sell what the customers wish for: “Our customers want to buy outcomes, not product features.”

Towards Outcome Economy

Over 800 industry decision makers and experts shared the topic “Towards Outcome Economy” at the Manufacturing Performance Days. Spotlight was on the new business models, earning logic and customer value creation.

Many industries are affected by digital disruption. Along with the adoption of IoT, even the most successful traditional industrial manufacturers selling physical investment products are transforming into usage-based and outcome-based service businesses.

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4 min read

How to Thrive in Digitalizing Services: Three Questions to Ask.

By Petri Takala on May 17, 2017 7:50:00 AM

Digitalization and new business models force most companies to think of the drivers for future success.

New business models require new thinking - and also new tools.

We have summarized three questions all companies should consider to thrive in this digital era.

Perhaps surprisingly - one of these important questions is tied to understanding the operational role and value of a customer contract.

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1 min read

Fortum HorsePower Grows Customer Oriented Circular Economy Services

By Petri Takala on May 5, 2017 11:59:00 AM

End-to-End Digitalization and Monetization for Subscription Services and Logistics Operations

Good Sign’s service business platform offers Fortum HorsePower end-to-end digitalization of both the service transactions and the financial transactions.

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4 min read

Towards Outcome Economy

By Taija Engman on Apr 22, 2017 9:52:00 AM

How Is Outcome Economy Tied to End-to-End Digitalization & New Software Capabilities?

Our world is under a major change: from selling products to providing products as part of a complete service.

Pay-per-use is becoming commonplace.

In the outcome economy companies will further shift from selling products and services to competing on delivering measurable results, which bring value to the customer.

The outcome economy will require many new capabilities from the businesses besides a need to be able to identify customer value. 

What? How? 

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5 min read

Digitalization - Paradigm Change in Business Model Requires Paradigm Change in Capabilities

By Minna Dahlström on Jan 10, 2017 9:15:00 AM

Are You Missing Bandwagon of Customizable Services?

At this day and age, customers are expecting a customized service - not a choice of a least ill-fitted service package.

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2 min read

Seasonal Greetings

By Taija Engman on Dec 22, 2016 1:05:04 PM

Reaching the End of the Year 2016,

And although it might not seem too different to 2015, we have seen some formidable change in the views of business professionals. The business world has talked about digitalization, servitization and as-a-service innovation for a while now, but now this seems to be turning into new service business model initiatitives in many industries.

The Continuous Services Business is Happening, Now

Back in the day it may have been easy to put a product to a package and deliver the package.

Now the customers want to hand-pick the features and build their own service combo.

Customer also expect to pay for just the parts they use: either paying for a safe fixed fee package which is fitted for their specific needs, or saving by paying according to actual use instead when the needs vary.

Therefore, service providers need to be able to provide custom fitted services and custom fitted pricing.

And they are – but at what cost? If variety must be offered, but the backoffice concists of traditional systems, the result is loads of Excel spreadsheets, costly manual work, inaccuracies and revenue leakage.

Our Prediction for the Year of Service Growth 2017

The World Economic Forum predicts that by 2030 all products will transform to services.

Would like to add, that transforming the products to services means new approach to operational and financial systems.

Our prediction is that in 2017 new intelligent automation software will be implemented for new service business models alongside the traditional ERP systems. The new service business software will provide for handling new kinds of service contracts and service subscriptions with customer specific and dynamic variety.

The Good Sign team would like to wish you

Happy Holidays and a Great New Year of Innovative Services 2017!

Click here for our blog page to reach the link to World Economic Forum prediction that by 2030 all products will transform to services.

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2 min read

Good Sign - Live at Slush - Wed Nov 30th

By Taija Engman on Nov 28, 2016 3:12:36 PM

Good Sign at the tech event of the year, Slush 2016. 

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1 min read

Good Sign - Certified ServiceNow App

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Oct 18, 2016 10:56:10 AM

We are glad to inform that Good Sign is now a certified app/interface for ServiceNow!


Say Good Bye to MS Excel Spreadsheets for gathering service billing data and pricing it according to each service contract. From manual complexity into automated flexibility!

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3 min read

Planning Expensive ERP Modifications to Meet Service Business Requirements?

By Kasper Ilmolahti on Oct 10, 2016 12:01:15 PM

What Is the Role of ERP?

For any kind of business, ERP systems have established an extremely important role in the past years – even to be counted as the spine of the operations. Companies have become dependent on the large number of core services provided by these systems from accounting and inventory management, all the way to HR.


Why Is ERP Not Fully Serving Today’s Business ?

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3 min read

Dynamic Automation And Orchestration. The Why And How.

By Kasper Ilmolahti on Aug 11, 2016 9:14:45 AM

The Long Journey to Digital Economy

As for today, it might seem that we have travelled far with the opportunities brought to us by digitalization. However, as mental it may sound, the utilization of these new possibilities provided to us has only scratched the surface. 

In todays competetive and fast-paced world it is crucial for business leaders to realize that the current business models that so heavily lean on manners accustomed from a time before digitalization will grow old-fashioned. In order to achieve notable advantages in the market, some cruzial changes (and investments) will have to be made - the sooner the better. 

This post discusses two subjects which will have serious weight in the digital economy of the future.

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2 min read

How Digital Platforms May Disrupt Manufacturing Industry

By Janne Kivilaakso on Jun 29, 2016 11:21:22 AM

How Digital Platforms May Disrupt Manufacturing Industry:

New Ecosystem Business Models Can Utilize 97% More Capacity 

In his podcast interview CEO Thomas Hedenborg states:

“There are studies testifying that only 3% of total installed manufacturing capacity is utilized. The one who creates a platform that connects this ample underutilized resource to a need is sitting on a gold mine.”

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3 min read

Make Your Business More Scalable By Embracing Digitalization

By Taija Engman on Jun 17, 2016 12:41:14 PM

Tidal Wave of New Service Providers 

Netflix, Uber, PayPal, Kickstarter, Dropbox, Spotify, Pinterest, Facebook…

What do they have in common? Each of them have managed to serve an absurd amount of customers with unthinkably small teams of employees.

Airbnb is already worth half of the giant of hotel industry, Hilton. With only 600 employees they can provide 500 thousand rooms to the market without investing anything to real estate. On the other hand, Hilton needs third of a million employees in order to operate their 680,000 -room capacity.

While we have all realized the ongoing transformation to Digital Era, and watched the rise of tsunami – scale wave of modern service providers, the utilization of the possibilities brought to us by technology has still been slow progress in traditional companies.

How long did it take for Spotify to grow to become a global baller? All of the major new service providers have found ways to scale their business effortlessly. 

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1 min read

Innovator Sheet: MaaS Seems To Become A Forerunner Of The New Digital Economy

By Petri Takala on Jun 6, 2016 2:53:03 PM



MaaS means ‘Mobility as a Service’.

Mobility as a Service combines different modes of transport into one unified service offering. Multiple transportation services are collected together and reached with a single intuitive user interface. Imagine a trip from Helsinki to Amsterdam, door to door, using a single ticket or better yet a subscription. Or imagine mastering daily transportation with a touch of a screen. At the same time MaaS is also a shift away from personally owned modes of transportation and towards digital mobility service.


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2 min read

Does Your Billing Process Still Include Spreadsheets and Manual Labor?

By Taija Engman on May 31, 2016 1:45:10 PM

Does Your Billing Process Still Include Spreadsheets and Manual Labor? 


Today, even the most complex billing models can be digitalized and automated. However, there are many organizations and many industries that are only now starting to look for billing process automation.

Briefly, the current state: 

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3 min read

Effectively Connect ServiceNow and SAP with Subscription Billing and Service Contract Billing Automation?

By Taija Engman on May 4, 2016 3:30:00 PM

 Many prominent service providers have chosen ServiceNow as their backbone system for service management and SAP as their ERP/financial system.

However, both systems offer very little for monetizing subscription and usage-based service businesses. (Let alone for managing the financial implications for the many levels required in emerging service ecosystems.) This often results in missing revenue, slow cash flow, and excess manual labor.

There is an easy way to to tie ServiceNow and SAP with subscription billing and service contract billing automation.

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3 min read

How a Service Portal is key to service business creation

By Franz Reuchlein on Apr 19, 2016 5:00:00 PM

In the service business industry, customer service can play a critical role in retention and expansion of customer base.

Furthermore, many customers testify that smooth customer self service outperforms service desk both in reviewing service content and in making service changes.

Self service portals can be key to service business creation and management, but only if they meet criteria that makes them desirable.

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2 min read

Why Scalability Matters In Service Business?

By Janne Kivilaakso on Apr 5, 2016 2:24:11 PM

What is Scalability?

Scalability. It is one of the key buzzwords of our times. You want to make an impression in a business model strategy meeting? Ask the magic question “is this scalable”?

But did you truly consider what it means?

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2 min read

How Service Provider Can Gain 10% More Revenue?

By Taija Engman on Mar 29, 2016 4:03:00 PM


Established Service providers are often missing up to 10% of their recurring services revenue before applying intelligent billing automation.

What Is the Revenue Growth Opportunity?

 Top two reasons to look for intelligent pricing and billing automation are:

  1. Uncovering up to 10% of missing revenue
  2. New scalable business models enable revenue growth


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3 min read

Business Creation: How to grab yor share of IoT?

By Kasper Ilmolahti on Mar 23, 2016 3:37:40 PM

Everything is connected


Whilst the Internet of Things has been widely hyped in the past few years and organizations have been actively launching programs on utilizing this phenomenon, still the commercial value is widely underachieved. According to a research by Capgemini, 70% of organizations do not generate service revenue from their IoT solutions.

Cisco has estimated that IoT has a potential to generate $19 trillion of value over the next decade. It is no wonder that companies are prioritizing their efforts on grabbing a chunk of that price.

In a survey of senior business leaders, 68% said that their companies have already invested budgets on IoT utilization, while 96% stated that they will be charting IoT advantages and possibilities in the next 3 years.

As we all know, there are major business opportunities in IoT.

BUT, how can we really grab a hold and make money out of it?

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2 min read

How Billing Automation Enables Single Source of Truth

By Taija Engman on Mar 4, 2016 9:00:15 AM

Single Source of Truth for Billing Brings Peace of Mind for the Service Provider And the Customer

I wish to share some great practical learnings from a day in the life of a service provider.

When we first engaged in a discussion with a prominent service provider, their team had really nailed it describing the challenges of their billing process and the expected benefits after implementing intelligent billing automation. Let me recap their profound problem description and reasoning into 3 top steps: 

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2 min read

Improved Profitability with Billing Automation?

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Jan 20, 2016 10:19:00 AM

Profitability in IoT Requires Intelligence

To improve profitability you need to run your existing business more efficiently or choose to create better pricing or business models - or do both. Billing as a function is closely related to and indeed inherent in both courses of action. Therefore, it's worth discussing what the benefits of automating billing are to companies - especially in the service sector. Especially in Internet of things. Can You really improve profitability utilising intelligent automation?

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3 min read

Higher Revenues with Billing Automation

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Jan 14, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Automating Billing Data Improves Business

Is it possible to get 10% higher revenues just by automating existing billing? Can you enable data transparency and create the opportunity to launch new pricing models and services fast to market?

I once again respond with a resounding - YES! Billing automation is an important part of the modernisation of business models in Internet of Things and Services. So what's keeping companies from improving their profitability?

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4 min read

How to Put Your ERP on Steroids

By Janne Kivilaakso on Dec 27, 2015 4:47:00 PM

Don’t we love ERP solutions? Besides being sometimes crumble and difficult to master they get the job done. Goods are delivered and books get closed. Decades of development in mastering supply chains of tangible goods has made them great in running linear business models.

Due to the supply chain driven history of these packages, there is, however, a big gap to support the intangible deliverables of service age businesses. Forcing in non-linear service deliverables creates complexities that are handled by human operators catching up loose ends and tying them back together. In practice this means seeking information and re-entering it to multiple places, and performing spreadsheet processing in between.

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3 min read

Improve Efficiency and Customer Satisfaction with Billing Automation

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Dec 22, 2015 5:01:49 PM

Eliminate 90% of Manual Labor? Yes. 

Is it possible to eliminate 90% of manual work in billing? And what’s more – can you simultaneously decrease invoice reclamations by 90%? Yes.

As a multitude of studies have shown, companies are using office tools to manage a large majority of their process work. Office tools and documents like MS Excel are fine to some extent, but lack of data transparency coupled with manual tasking limits process efficiency as volumes become higher. This is also the case with billing processes.

Manual work? Where's the Spinning Jenny?

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4 min read

Red Herring Global 100 - The Key Takeways

By Franz Reuchlein on Dec 17, 2015 4:26:02 PM

Red Herring recognizes technology industry startups and leaders of private ventures from around the globe. Their November 2015 Global 100 event offered not only exposure to other thought leaders and their companies, but also a robust list of speakers and thoughts on the world of technology. I was fortunate to be able to take part in the event and one of the key themes this November in LA was the overall state of technology.


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2 min read

Good Sign Solutions Receives Red Herring Global Top 100 Award

By Franz Reuchlein on Dec 9, 2015 1:20:21 PM

Good Sign Solutions joins the exclusive ranks of companies to win the prestigious Red Herring 2015 Top 100 Global Award. The event insights and reasons for success...

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3 min read

Is Repetition Killing Your Employee Contribution?

By Franz Reuchlein on Nov 19, 2015 6:52:26 PM

Digitalisation & Productivity. Where's the Added Value?

Productivity in the digital economy may turn every classic measurement of productivity on its head. Productivity can be expressed as the ratio of output to inputs used in the production process. More out than in, means value creation and productivity. There is personal productivity, enterprise productivity, manufacturing productivity, labor productivity, and material productivity. From an enterprise and business standpoint, output can be measured in revenue, profit, price and gains.

In the services economy, productivity needs to be looked at from a new vantage point. Repetitive services done by people are a form of wasteful production and they are killing employee contribution.

Topics: automation
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1 min read

Good Sign Solutions Nokia Open Innovation Challenge 2015 Winner

By Taija Engman on Nov 10, 2015 3:35:05 PM

The Nokia Open Innovation Challenge is about big ideas, new technologies, creative business models, and unexpected combinations that will transform the IoT industry. Good Sign Solutions is among the selected Winners of this year’s Nokia Open Innovation Challenge with our business automation software for IoT.

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4 min read

How Should Technical Support Work In IoT?

By Janne Kivilaakso on Oct 12, 2015 7:30:00 AM

Industrial Internet Radically Changes The Role of Technical Support

Industrial Internet Shifts the Paradigm

Back in the early Nineties I bought a top-brand scanner, which back then cost as much as a small car. The machine broke after a few weeks, making a loud rattling noise. I called support saying that this new scanner is clearly, audibly broken. I was transferred to second level support. I again conveyed the symptoms and reiterated that the unit needs to be replaced. The employee went through her troubleshooting flowchart, and finally asked me to place the handset of my (landline) phone next to the unit and scan. She listened to the rattle and stated “OK, it is broken.” This took a long time. What followed went smoothly with a next day replacement delivery. Logistics was already great back then. The troubleshooting, on the other hand, was indeed a bit technology assisted -  she used audio analysis.

Think about the change technical support has experienced in the last 20 years! Also imagine the challenges it faces in today's digital services economy. How should it work?

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3 min read

Industrial Internet. From Things To Processes.

By Janne Kivilaakso on Oct 2, 2015 8:00:00 AM

A Common Goal. Making Internet of Things (IoT) Work in Industrial Internet. 

All of us following the industry know that companies are largely making their products part of the industrial internet. We talk about the ‘Internet of Things’ or better yet, the ‘Internet of Everything’. The shift from products to services is on everyone's lips with `Digital Services Economy´. 

Everything will be connected!

Traditionally connectivity was about connecting to products in order to perform remote maintenance and management actions thus saving time and money. Connectivity has also been used to push data from devices – used for collecting statistics and raising alarms. This traditional product connectivity has provided businesses with enhanced possibilities to detect and rectify issues even before the end customers may experience any impact.

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3 min read

Channel Partnering in the Digital Age

By Franz Reuchlein on Sep 30, 2015 3:52:06 AM

The Digital Economy. True Partnership Starts With Sharing

Channel partnering used to mean agreements, companies in the channel working towards a singular aim. But times have changed and B2B agreements are no longer enough to meet end customer needs. True partnership these days means sharing of information.

Customer information that connects all partners with the end customer needs means every partner in the channel takes a bit of ingenuity, a bit of finesse and a bit of know how.

How we understand partnership is different from yesteryear. What we mean by a channel has changed too. How and what does it all mean?

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4 min read

What Do You Need To Get To A New Level In Service Pricing?

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Sep 23, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Do You First Have To Clean Up All Existing Data And Design New Processes To Reach The Next Level?

You have to learn to walk before you can run. You have to get the process to work manually before you can start to automate it. Garbage in, Garbage out. You have to clean the old data before you can start to automate processes. 

Is that actually correct? No, I say it's not. What do you really need to do before you excel in modern service pricing? 

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1 min read

News: Janne Kivilaakso Joins Good Sign as Industrial Internet Lead

By Taija Engman on Sep 14, 2015 3:00:00 PM

Adding Strength to Good Sign's Growing Team!

Janne Kivilaakso has started at Good Sign as the Industrial Internet Lead.  Janne will focus on extending the proven Good Sign Solution to customers with a special focus on Industrial Internet of Things and Services.

Topics: Appointments
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1 min read

News: Taija Engman, Good Sign CEO, On Main Stage FallUp 2015

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Sep 14, 2015 11:22:00 AM

Helping Fuel New Growth With New Businesses

Finland needs new growth companies. That’s why FallUp, created by the Aalto Entrepreneurship Society, is extremely well-timed and important. Over 1700 university students will hear about start-up ecosystems and entrepreneurship from speakers like Taija and CEO Ilkka Paananen, founder of world class gaming company Supercell.

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2 min read

From Retainment to Genuine Advocacy. Managing Successful Customer Relationships in IoT

By Franz Reuchlein on Sep 9, 2015 4:34:41 PM

Are You Meeting Customers in Real-Time?

Contact between customers and the enterprise are changing quickly as real-time decisions become more necessary for successful relationships. There is still customer dissatisfaction as long lead times, fragmented infrastructure and the very information necessary to do a great job for customers is not always easily available.

Many organizations are treading on two levels, simultaneously trying to understand IoT while silently keeping old systems afloat. This can feel very contradictory to customers. What business dynamics need to be addressed?

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5 min read

The Number One Reason Why Enterprise IT Fails To Meet Expectations

By Franz Reuchlein on Aug 24, 2015 3:00:00 PM


Consumer Reality Vs. Enterprise Complexity

There is a paradox in the way enterprises still view enterprise IT. The paradox becomes even more obvious when a comparison is made with the way consumers now view consumer IT. You see, the hard-nosed business approach, which is used in enterprises for hiring, firing, manufacturing, shipping, selling, and billing, apparently fails when it comes to IT.

It is common for corporate software development projects for example to start with the expectation of budget and schedule overruns. Enter enterprise skepticism - is it a surprise?

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2 min read

IoT – What it really means and how your business can benefit from it

By Suvi Anttonen on Aug 24, 2015 8:55:00 AM

Smart phones, smart cars, smart homes, smart businesses – everything seems to be smart these days. People keep talking about the possibilities of digitalization and Internet of Things (IoT) without really explaining what they actually mean. What is Internet of Things (IoT) really? What does digitalization have to do with it?

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6 min read

How to Redesign Your Services & Pricing. The 5 key Elements.

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Aug 13, 2015 9:30:00 AM


After working for a long time in IT in different organisations, I have seen how the transformation from "server" management to service management is not an easy task. Digitalization is transforming strategies and pushing more and more businesses towards services. In practice this entails more components in service pricing and more partners in service delivery and management.

In days past mainly technology components made our lives more complex - today the reality is, that we have more and more service-driven components to manage. 

So what are the key elements of service design and pricing? Furthermore, what factors are inhibiting us from succeeding with these needed new changes? Let me walk you through some examples and discuss the the key requirements.

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3 min read

3 Challenges Facing Incumbent Service Businesses

By Franz Reuchlein on Aug 11, 2015 3:00:00 PM

Innovative business models are making headlines, challenging the boundaries of legal rulings, and turning their sights on competing against larger corporate, institutional and established companies.

McKinsey recently released their July Quarterly, which outlines an approach that incumbent companies can use to reframe their business models in order to avoid “displacement, disruption, and, in extreme cases, outright destruction.” Three serious challenges can pose business critical obstacles to incumbent service companies: Pay-per-use, on-demand and anticipatory offering.

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3 min read

IT, a Decades-Old Virtual Business Model, and Lessons for the Industrial Internet

By Taija Engman on Aug 5, 2015 10:34:11 AM

Is cloud computing the new, new thing? Was it ever that? We talk about Software as a Service, Platform as a Service, Infrastructure as a Service and many other things ‘as a Service’, as though they were invented only yesterday. Yet much of the basic cloud computing model has already existed for decades. What is new and exciting about virtual computing is the massive swing it is causing in how people and organizations use IT. The cloud is increasingly where everybody lives and does business.

So what does that mean for other sectors and the industrial internet that is growing up between them?

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4 min read

Digitalization and Disruption. Welcome to Your Future

By Suvi Anttonen on Aug 3, 2015 9:20:39 AM


Digitalization is the word on everyone’s lips almost anywhere you go. And so it should be. The message from business, media and strategy consultants is clear: Companies not advancing digitalization in their business won’t last. So what are some of the brightest thinkers in the world saying on the subject?

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2 min read

Is Excel, the world's most commonly used billing tool, the best?

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Jul 14, 2015 8:19:00 AM

Do you regularly spend last couple of days of every month diligently collecting data and preparing billing materials in Microsoft Excel spreadsheets? You are not the only one. This is true especially in service billing and happens not only in small companies but also in big corporations. There is nothing wrong with Excel. It is really very flexible, fast and efficient in data filtering and calculations.

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CEO Taija Engman discusses growth in a podcast

By Suvi Anttonen on Jul 10, 2015 2:53:26 PM

How is digitalisation transforming business? What are the pros and cons of IoT? How is it affecting sales? Important questions. Good Sign Solutions CEO Taija Engman discusses these and other important, related topics in the latest Sales Communications podcast. The popular podcast, entitled "Kasvu podcast," is in Finnish and features some of the most prominent Finnish business leaders and thinkers managing change in our digitalized economy. 

Siirry resurssipankkiimme kuunnellaksesi Podcastin How is digitalization changing your business? Let us show you.
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9 min read

You don't need to harmonize everything to improve service management efficiency

By Mervi Vikki-Aaltonen on Jul 6, 2015 7:49:00 AM

Would you like to improve organizational efficiency, lean processes or develop new services or business models, but feel trapped in data, tools and process silos? Does the way out seem far too time consuming, complex and costly?  

At the same time, are you a witness to the new era of digitalization being created day by day? Do you see the promise of the integration of digital technologies into everyday life through the digitalization of everything - that can actually be digitalized?

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4 min read

Optimize Business Decision Making: A Quick Guide

By Franz Reuchlein on Jun 10, 2015 2:00:00 PM

Most Business Decisions Aren't Decisions, They're Optimizations

When I think of optimization, I often think of the data analyst down the hall who buries herself in mathematical calculations, data mining and feats of logic. I was pleasantly surprised to see a great example of managerial optimization during a presentation by Davina Kent from Comcast Spotlight at a recent event, Everything is Connected.

Davina was demonstrating her companies ability to measure advertising across television and online channels and help adjust ad weight to be most effective. She presented a four quadrant visual example with recommendations on what to keep, what to stop and what to rebalance or reallocate when comparing spend to advertising impressions.

Topics: Optimization
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1 min read

How much revenue is your company missing due to unavoidable human failure rates?

By Suvi Anttonen on Jun 9, 2015 9:47:48 AM

How much is 10% of your company’s revenue?

Human error is natural and sometimes even necessary to help us learn avoid making the same mistakes again. However in business, human errors can lead into high failure rates and poor working performance, which may have severe effects on company revenues and profits.

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5 min read

Is Your Accounting System Sufficient for the Internet of Services?

By Franz Reuchlein on May 28, 2015 6:16:00 PM

The short answer is probably not. Cost, quality, speed and delivery describe the core tenets of lean thinking and value creation whether manufacturing products or designing and delivering services. Does your current support systems (information technologies, processes and organizational design) support, not only strategic forecasting, but day-to-day managerial decision-making?

Accounting systems should play a crucial role in not only cost reduction and improved profitability but also understanding cost allocation in relation to the most value-added business activities. Yet, most accounting systems have been shaped by financial reporting procedures and regulation.

Add to the mix the increased complexity of service offerings, changing customer demand and increased speed of innovation, and cost accounting processes and systems end up delivering less insights than ever before. Business intelligence solutions naturally help fill in the gap by enabling more than rudimentary analysis, but they are not operating systems.

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2 min read

The Opportunity: From Products to Services in the Internet of Things

By Taija Engman on May 27, 2015 6:11:45 PM

Will Services Replace Products in the Industrial Internet? 

Today, many enterprises buy and sell machines and spare parts as one-time, capital purchases. Tomorrow, could they satisfy the same needs and reach the same goals through online services? The real world with buildings, farming, or power generation may seem unlikely to turn virtual. However, the industrial internet is significantly changing the way business is done.

Not only are new business models now available for renting instead of buying, but thanks to the industrial internet, some manufacturers are starting to sell something better still: results. 

Let me show you some tangible examples of new business opportunities.

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1 min read

Good Sign winnaar Red Herring Top 100 Europe Award

By Jeroen Pijpers on Apr 23, 2015 3:38:00 PM

De Red Herring Top 100 Europa vormt een onderscheidende lijst van nieuwe, toonaangevende en innovatieve bedrijven en entrepreneurs in de technologie. Red Herring’s editorial team selecteert hiervoor partijen waarvan verwacht wordt dat zij aan de vooravond staan van een explosieve groei en ontwikkeling. Eerder werden onder meer Facebook, Twitter, Google, Yahoo, Skype, Salesforce, YouTube en Ebay door het team van Red Herring in een vroeg stadium ‘ontdekt’ als bedrijven waarvan verwacht werd dat ze een grote impact zouden hebben op ons dagelijkse leven en werk. Dit jaar is Good Sign verkozen als een van de winnaars in de Red Herring’s Top 100 Europe award 2015.
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3 min read

Global Mobile Blues - Telecom Expense Management

By Franz Reuchlein on Apr 16, 2015 4:24:00 PM

Do your people or teams travel internationally?

The Costs of Mobile Connectivity

We believe the face-to-face, boots on the ground, in market presence will make business better and easier. We understand jet lag can creep into productivity, but it's all worth it in the end. Sure, there are the day-to-day things that fall to the wayside, but a focus on the trip and task at hand can easily make up for that.

Face to face meetings are well worth the effort, but at what cost?

After all, how many of us have made that business trip abroad only to realise, that connecting with the home office and sending the occasional private text message to one's spouse is incredulously expensive?

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2 min read

A Silver Herring, a Red Herring and a Blue Ocean

By Taija Engman on Apr 16, 2015 11:21:00 AM

Tasty Herring Anyone?

A popular event called "silakkamarkkinat" i.e. the Helsinki Baltic Herring Fair takes place in Helsinki, Finland at the Central Market place each Autumn.

It's the oldest traditional event in Helsinki and has been held since 1743. The tradition holds, that islanders from all around the Archipelago, their boats overflowing with herring products, dock their fishing boats on the main pier and sell herring directly from their boats.

A great event. You simply cannot walk by without tasting some.

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1 min read

Good Sign named Winner of the 2015 Red Herring Top 100 Europe Award

By Taija Engman on Apr 15, 2015 8:29:00 PM

Topics: news
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1 min read

Good Sign is a Finalist for the 2015 Red Herring Top 100 Europe Award

By Taija Engman on Apr 10, 2015 2:13:00 PM

HELSINKI – 7th April 2015 - Good Sign has just been selected as one of the finalists in Red Herring´s Top 100 Europe award, which is a prestigious list honoring the year´s most promising private technology ventures from the European business region.

Topics: news
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3 min read

6 Signs Your Company Needs Service Contract Billing System

By Taija Engman on Apr 2, 2015 11:42:36 AM

The Digital Services Economy

We see it everywhere from one industry to another. What used to be products have now turned into services in many industry sectors. Devices have become an embedded part of the service, not a sold item. And what used to be a standard offering has now become both complex and variable. Is that good or bad news?

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1 min read

New ITSM professional at Good Sign

By Taija Engman on Mar 3, 2015 2:05:00 PM

Topics: news
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3 min read

Not Offering ‘Click to Buy’ B2B Services? You May Not Survive.

By Taija Engman on Mar 3, 2015 7:30:00 AM

A World Driven by Instant Gratification

Companies in the B2B services market that continue to do billing and provisioning manually may not have a long life expectancy.

The business world is now driven by software and customer desire for instant gratification. Doing something by hand that could be automated by an IT application is a dubious proposition at the best of times. Even if your enterprise manages to get by under the weight of its labor-intensive processes, don’t be surprised  - if you find a moment to look up - to see customers moving away to other solutions.

Automated billing and provisioning or ‘click to buy’ service purchasing is increasingly changing from being an option to an obligation for B2B services companies that want to survive and thrive.

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6 min read

Just in Time Telecom Expense Management

By Franz Reuchlein on Feb 12, 2015 6:44:23 PM

That 1960's spy TV hyper-focus black and white style look was on my face. My eyes swirled and focused in on a corner of my mobile phone screen and what appeared to be a missing icon.

During a recent business trip, checking email, reviewing a few documents, investigating webinars of the competition, and learning a bit about Chess on YouTube, I was sure I had connected to Wi-Fi. To my surprise text messages started coming in from AT&T explaining how I had exceeded my data plan.

It seems my hotel only provided Wi-Fi for the door half of the room, not the window half.

At that point just-in-time telecom expense management was being trumped by back-in-time telecom expense management. And I was paying the bill.

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4 min read

How To Really Help Service Management

By Taija Engman on Jan 21, 2015 9:24:00 AM

Successful Software Product Design, Anyone?

As developers we all know the drill. A simple and clear user interface with self-explanatory icons and buttons is the ultimate goal when creating a software product. In reality, however, the goal is quite often very hard to reach, as the software itself and the tasks it accomplishes are complex. For example, preparing invoices and combining products and services into packages can require some guidance for end users, at least for first-time users. 

How can a developer try to ensure success in software design? How can professionals help service management?

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Good Sign at MWC 2015 Barcelona

By Taija Engman on Jan 16, 2015 2:00:00 PM


Good Sign presents its mobile internet era solutions for Service Contract and Billing Automation for Internet of Things (IoT) at Mobile World Congress 2015. Good Sign professionals are there to introduce digitalilized services for Industrial Internet, Telecom Operators, ICT Services, Intelligent Traffic and Power and Utilities. You can book an appointment to meet them at MWC 2015! You will find Good Sign at Hall 5 stand 5C31.

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5 min read

3 Ways to Improve your Relationship with ITIL

By Franz Reuchlein on Jan 7, 2015 5:01:54 PM


ITILYour Relationship With The Methodology Counts

"I am often cautious when using the term ITIL," Pat Musto of Column Technologies said to spur on the roundtable discussion at Decembers Chicago itSMF LIG meeting.

I was not surprised with the responses, which included a spectrum of experiences up to the banning of the term ITIL, the widely accepted approach to IT Service Management, within some organizations after bad experiences and failures.

I have seen similar rejections of methodologies. After Six Sigma took off at Motorola a number of organizations followed suite and at times found their investment outweighed the benefits. Today, ERP is coming under criticism as best in class solutions challenge the be-all package.

At Nokia we addressed the cost issue of Six Sigma by training general management staff to recognize an opportunity to use Six Sigma and a small team of experts to the black belt level that would consult on the most impactful projects.The application became as important as the methodology itself. The key is understanding your relationship with the methodology.

The 3 ways to improve that relationship with ITIL include:

  1. See ITIL as it is
  2. Make people accountable not tools
  3. You say to-may-toe, I say to-mah-toe

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3 min read

What Do Big Hero 6 and Service Management Outcomes have in common?

By Franz Reuchlein on Dec 10, 2014 11:00:00 AM

My son picked the movie this past weekend, Big Hero 6. I didn't know much about the movie going in but pleasantly enjoyed the story. I don't want to give away any of the surprises, but there was a scene that brought back memories of innovation methods. 

Tadashi introduces his brainchild younger brother, Hiro, to Nerd School, the college he attends in San Francisco. Hiro is so enamoured with Tadashi and his peers that he wants to attend as well and needs to create a project to showcase his talents. He sits down with a pad of paper and freezes. I think we have all been there. Tadashi picks up his little brother and shakes him around, at one point upside-down, saying "I'm shaking things up! You need to look at it from a different angle." 

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4 min read

Official Good Sign Solutions Christmas Story: The Great Santazon.com

By Taija Engman on Dec 1, 2014 2:54:22 PM

Once upon a time, in the year 2024, the Santa Corporation had become the world’s largest service broker and franchiser. Santa was not only able to hand out love and happiness at Christmas time, but also donate billions to improve the daily lives of people on Earth. Many of the diseases still present in 2014 like Ebola and Aids had been eradicated and even hunger was but a distant nightmare.

Santazon.com was the world’s largest digital service on-line store. Kids in 2024 could not believe their parents had seen elves only in December - and only as an occasional glimpse of the tip of a red hat quickly vanishing behind a Mistletoe plant. In 2024 elves were everywhere, tending to their partners and managing what was a very lucrative charity business.

What had happened?

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2 min read

Solve For A Different Problem

By Franz Reuchlein on Dec 1, 2014 2:00:00 PM

I've been wracking my brain for a billion dollar idea for 20 years and if I had succeeded to date I would be writing this from my own island or mountain top cabin.

But I can tell you what one looks like. 

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3 min read

Service Automation Equals User Experience Improvement

By Taija Engman on Nov 27, 2014 7:00:00 AM

From Theory to Practice

Service Automation is one the most important topics nowadays. If you search for service automation via Google you can get almost 50 000 000 links. Most of them cover the theory of service automation and very few illustrate what an enhanced user experience actually means.

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3 min read

Expensive Billing in Service Management. And how to avoid it.

By Franz Reuchlein on Nov 13, 2014 12:54:00 PM

Billing complexity increases for managed service providers as customer agreements shift from simpler services to more complicated value-driven service chains. If manually calculating invoices from spreadsheets and documents, IT service providers may generally use 10-15 analysts per $125M of billable revenue.

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1 min read

Licensed to Bill Transparently!

By Taija Engman on Oct 3, 2014 6:00:00 PM

The 11th Annual itSMF Conference in Helsinki, Finland A Resounding Success.

Earlier today I had the absolute pleasure of getting on stage at the conference with Mr. Tero Lappalainen, Head of Service Delivery, Managed Services Nordic at Fujitsu. The title of our presentation? It sounds like a Bond film. Almost just as exciting? You be the judge.

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Good Sign is in the Kasvu Open Finals

By Taija Engman on Sep 28, 2014 1:56:00 PM

Kasvu Open finalisti Good Sign Oy on ohjelmistoyritys, jonka   ohjelmisto uudistaa  palveluiden hallinnan digitalisaation, koko palveluketjun ohjauksen ja automaation sekä palveluiden kustannusten ja tuottojen läpinäkyvyyden. Asiakkaat käyttävät ohjelmistoa voidakseen tehostaa, automatisoida ja tuoda läpinäkyväksi palveluiden toimittamisen niin sisäisesti kuin asiakkaiden, toimittajien ja kumppanien verkostojen kanssa. Read more >

Topics: news
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1 min read

11th annual itSMF conference

By Taija Engman on Sep 25, 2014 1:35:00 PM

Good Sign was a Silver Partner in the annual IT Service Management conference. The conference was held as usual the first Thu and Fri of October. The location was the beautiful Kalastajatorppa as in previous years.

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3 min read

Is More Efficient and Effective Service Management Possible Today?

By Taija Engman on Sep 11, 2014 3:33:33 PM

Move from tasks-to-do to tasks-done

We all know it. IT services have been in the forefront of service management with concepts such as ITIL and SIAM, as well as ITSM software suites.

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