Can you share your professional journey with us, highlighting key milestones in your 20+ years in telecommunications?
I started my career as BSS implementation engineer and gained valuable experience working for many tier-1 and tier-2 communications service providers (CSPs) across Europe and the USA. I was fascinated by 4G technology when it was first launched and witnessed first hand how the advancement in network technology had a direct correlation in improving the quality of life. I was fortunate to be a part of the team that enabled the first connected iPad. As 5G gained ground around 2018-2019, I shifted my focus to learning about 5G technology and was involved in design and implementation of network functions during the initial launch of 5G SA (stand-alone) by a tier-1 operator in USA. I’m currently working on designing solutions for expansion of 5G services, especially in the areas that we believe will enable CSPs to unlock the value of their investment in next-gen networks through slicing, network exposure, analytics, zero-touch networks and private networks.
Could you elaborate on your current role as a Principal Engineer at Amdocs? What are some of your main responsibilities?
As a principal engineer, I am responsible for understanding the customer requirements, specifically the business drivers behind them, and helping to define the system architecture that is somewhat future-proof, while maintaining cost and time constraints. The process involves deep collaboration and co-ordination with multiple teams across the organization – both internal and external, including different people from different geographies and skillset. The responsibility of a principal engineer also includes technical guidance and support for the engineers during the development cycle, while assisting project managers with managing scope-creeps and budget estimations.
Given your extensive experience, what aspects of working in the telecommunications industry do you find most rewarding and inspiring?
I always ask myself about how the work I do impacts people. This drives me to prioritize solving problems that help improve quality of life whether through enabling cheaper, faster, better connectivity or by designing innovative services that unlock the power of that connectivity. The advancement in telecommunication technology is rapidly shrinking the physical world and I’m excited about playing a part in making the futuristic visions of science-fiction a reality.
Amdocs is known for its cloud-native, open, and dynamic products and services. Could you shed some light on how Amdocs is pioneering these technologies and services in the telecom industry?
Amdocs is leading the way in pioneering cloud-native, open, and dynamic solutions. By embracing cloud-native architecture, enabling greater scalability and flexibility in our offerings, we’re promoting open architecture, supporting interoperability and collaboration within the telecom ecosystem. Plus, our dynamic services empower telecom operators to adapt swiftly to changing market conditions and customer demands.
We are also at the forefront of supporting 5G and IoT and are integrating AI and automation into our offerings to enhance operational efficiency and customer experiences while maintaining a strong focus on personalized services and customer-centric solutions.
Considering your expertise, how do you perceive AI and Automation transforming the telecommunications industry, particularly in the context of emerging technologies like 5G and 6G?
AI and automation are revolutionizing the telecommunications industry. These technologies improve network management and optimization by analyzing data in real-time, enhancing customer support through AI-driven chatbots, and predicting maintenance needs. They also bolster security by detecting fraud and responding to threats, optimize resource allocation and efficiency, and enable the customization of network services. Moreover, AI facilitates data analytics for personalized services, manages the complexity of 5G and edge computing, and supports virtualization and software-defined networks, ultimately reducing costs while ensuring quality and regulatory compliance. In essence, AI and automation empower telecom companies to offer better services, lower operational costs, and enhance network performance and security.
Could you share a specific project or initiative you’ve worked on recently that highlights the innovative use of 5G technology? What were the outcomes and lessons learned from that project?
I have had a chance to work on several interesting initiatives in 5G technology. The one that stands out from recent memory is about use of analytics to improve the user experience with connected devices. As with any other ‘new’-ish technology, it was very interesting to see that a ‘technical’ breakthrough by itself is not noteworthy, unless it provides a clear benefit to an end-user, whether it terms of better service, reduced cost or an improved quality of life.
Amdocs is deeply involved in research and analysis of emerging technology. Could you elaborate on the company’s approach to staying ahead in the rapidly changing tech landscape?
Amdocs places deep emphasis on not just research and technology, but also its people. We have many avenues to train, upskill, experiment and showcase our capabilities. Amdocs has partnerships with leading training platforms such as LinkedIn, Udemy and Microsoft to enable employees to continuously learn new skills. We participate and contribute in leading organizations driving telecommunications standards such as 3GPP (3rd Generation Partnership Project), Camara, NGMN (Next Generation Mobile Network). We are also regular participants in major industry events such as Mobile World Congress and TMForum to present innovative technology and use cases.
Can you provide us with a glimpse into Amdocs’s development plans in the telecommunications and technology space?
Amdocs is investing heavily in network technology, especially in use of AI/ML to improve network behaviour as well as the service experience from a user’s perspective. We see networks moving towards self-optimizing, self-healing entities and Amdocs is at the forefront of building future-proof networks today.
Looking ahead, what excites you the most about the future of telecommunications technology, and how do you anticipate it will transform our daily lives in the coming years?
The most thrilling aspect of the future of telecommunications technology is its potential to seamlessly interconnect all aspects of our lives. With the advent of 5G, IoT, and increasingly sophisticated AI, we’re on the cusp of experiencing an unprecedented level of connectivity and convenience. We’re talking about lightning-fast, low-latency networks that will enable autonomous vehicles to navigate safely, telemedicine to reach remote areas with precision, smart cities to optimize resources, and augmented and virtual reality to enhance our everyday experiences. The transformative power lies in our ability to effortlessly communicate, work, and access services on a global scale, with the technology adapting to our needs.
What continues to motivate you in your career? Do you have any book or podcast recommendations that have inspired you and could benefit our readers as well?
What motivates me is the opportunity to constantly learn and grow. Keeping up with the pace of the technology can seem challenging at times, but it also means that there is always something new to discover, learn and master.
As a seasoned professional, what is the best piece of advice you’d like to share with company leaders today, especially those in the fast-paced and ever-changing technology industry?
Stay curious and give your absolute best in the task right in front of you. Treat everyone with respect, regardless of their position or status.
Monika Gupta, Principal Technical Architect, Amdocs
Monika Gupta, principal technical architect at Amdocs, is a dedicated and passionate leader in the Telecommunications field with around 25 years of experience. With expertise in emerging technologies and a focus on solving customer problems, she drives innovation in building exceptional 4G/5G solutions. Trusted by clients and admired for her commitment, she builds strong relationships to achieve common goals, while mentoring and coaching teams to deliver outstanding results. Having worked with renowned companies like Amdocs, Openet, Wipro and Ericsson, she brings a wealth of diverse industry experiences to her role, remaining at the forefront of technology trends and delivering transformative solutions in the ever-evolving telecommunications landscape.