Category: Blog

MD7 Announces Contract Analyzer

AI/MACHINE LEARNING FOR CONTRACT ABSTRACTION AND DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT

SAN DIEGO – June 19, 2019 – Md7 is pleased to announce Contract Analyzer, software that leverages Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) to abstract key provisions and manage lease data for cell site leases. Md7’s Contract Analyzer algorithms were developed specifically to review complex cell site lease agreements with significantly greater speed and accuracy as compared to traditional, manual/human-based/resource-intensive methods.

Contract Analyzer utilizes Md7’s cutting edge, proprietary rules for machine learning to accurately abstract and categorize key lease provisions in thousands of cell site leases for major wireless operators.  Currently, Contract Analyzer has rules ready to deploy in English and German and is capable of quickly expanding to additional languages to accommodate worldwide customer demand for accurate lease data across all Mobile Network Operators (MNOs).

Jared Williams, Director of Data & Analytics identified the need and led the development of this solution.  Williams points out that “Contract Analyzer will improve our efforts to abstract hundreds-of-thousands of telecommunication agreements in support of site upgrades, data and document management, M&A activity, and other analytic initiatives, and provide significant, tangible benefits to ongoing lease and landlord management operations.  By combining Contract Analyzer with LiveTrack, our workflow and lease management software, we can more quickly and accurately review and maintain not just some, but all of the key lease terms. This, in turn, provides better lease analytics and improves decision making across all levels of an organization.”

Due to the constraints of traditional lease abstraction methods such as the large amount of human capital required, and the difficulty in accessing the necessary documentation, cost and time were often significant limiting factors for wireless operators. As a result, extracting lease information has typically been limited to one or perhaps a handful of provisions in a lease that are important for a single initiative. The drawback to this is that the data is of limited value, both in scope, and time. Shortly after it is abstracted, the data becomes stale and unusable.  As a result, the same information has often been abstracted year after year by wireless operators, at great expense.

Contract Analyzer allows users to:

  • Digitize their documents, creating an organized and searchable document database relying on Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and accurate metadata.
  • Implement any number of machine learning rules to quickly and accurately abstract and maintain lease provision data for existing and newly created lease documents, while significantly reducing the time and cost associated with this effort.
  • Push captured data into any system of their choosing for utilization and/or analysis.

Contract Analyzer is a direct result of Md7’s commitment to its core value of Continuous Improvement – finding better, faster, cheaper ways to manage the increasingly large portfolios of real estate assets required to operate every cell site in the world.

For more information, email the Contract Analyzer team at CA@md7.com.

ABOUT MD7

Based in San Diego, California, and Dublin, Ireland, Md7 is a network real estate management company serving the telecommunications industry since 2003.  Md7 has provided a variety of site acquisition, lease management, and negotiation services for over thirty operators in twenty different countries and twelve different languages in Asia, Africa, Europe, North America and Oceania.

To learn more about Md7, please visit https://www.md7.com/


Md7 at 5G World London

Join Md7 at 5G World Summit in London

If you had to make a list of some of the most exciting events happening in the wireless industry every year, the 5G World Summit would undoubtedly be right at the top. It’s an incredible opportunity to not only learn but also network and partner with more than 2,500 professionals from all over the world – and this year, Md7 will be right in the heart of it all.

As a society, our need for speed and data throughput is at an all-time high – and when the Internet of Things finally takes hold over the next few years, that demand is poised to explode. Taking place from June 11, 2019 to June 13 at ExCeL in London, the Md7 team is excited to be on hand to speak with customers and colleagues alike about what the future has in store for the wireless industry.

We’re eagerly anticipating the various workshops and keynotes devoted to a whole host of important topics for our industry, including:

  • 5G Network Evolution and Economics
  • 5G Monetization
  • Virtualization and the Cloud
  • Automation and Intelligence
  • Realizing URLLC
  • 5G Enabled Transportation
  • The Relationship Between Telco & AI
  • What 6G May Look Like

Members of the Md7 team will be on hand for all three days. Be on the lookout for Michael Gianni, CEO, John Cahill, VP Business Development, Mark Christenson, President, International/CTO and Maxi Kürschner, Head of Business Development MITL.

London itself is both the capital and the largest city in the United Kingdom, offering a wide range of different attractions and other points of interest for travelers. It’s the home to not only famous locations like Trafalgar Square, but also the Canary Wharf, the Tower Bridge (seen in the James Bond film “Spectre,” among others) and more.

We certainly hope to see you at the event and if you’re planning on attending, be sure to let us know so we can schedule a time to get together. To find out more about this event and to learn about the various conference tracks and speakers, visit the 5G World Summit official website.


Md7 Core Value - Respect for the Individual

Respect for the Individual: One of Our Most Important Values

At Md7, our organization has changed a great deal over the years – both in ways that we could have predicted and many in which we couldn’t. But our six core values have remained the same – and for many of our team members, the most important one is Respect for the Individual.

To us, respect for the individual means more than just smiling and being polite. It means that every person is of equal value – end of story. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been with the company, how much money you’re willing to spend as a client, or what your job title says – every person is equal and deserves the same level of care, respect and attention that will serve everyone well for years to come. This isn’t just something that “sounds good” on paper – it comes from the heart, which is precisely why it’s so powerful.

This also means that we make it a priority to treat each person as we ourselves would want to be treated. Everyone deserves to be supported and encouraged, both of which allow their core strengths to shine through during every moment of every day. It’s the value that Md7 was built upon and it’s one that we work hard to reinforce with everything that we do on a daily basis.

When we show others that we respect them as individuals, we become much stronger together than any one of us could hope to be on our own. When we do this, there is truly no limit to what we’re able to accomplish together, exactly the way it should be.

Watch this video and learn more about Respect for the Individual at Md7

Becoming a Member of the Md7 Family

At Md7, we are fully aware that part of the reason we’ve been able to be so successful over the years has to do with our adherence to core values like Respect for the Individual. We look for candidates who not only have that deeply rooted respect for the individual, but who are also dedicated to giving back to their communities, who embody integrity and a sense of continuous improvement, who lead a balanced life and who are dedicated to the extreme service required to exceed the customer’s expectations each and every time they’re given the opportunity to do so.

We know candidates aren’t interested in becoming “just another employee” – and that is not what we want either. We are looking for people who are enthusiastic about becoming a true member of the Md7 family in every sense of the term – and that will be difficult to accomplish, if not impossible, without these core values.

We encourage you to learn more about the core values of our organization. If you are interested in becoming that next great member of the Md7 family, take a moment to view our current job openings.


5G Network Coverage over populated city

Using AI and AR to Address 5G Labor Shortages

As you may have read in recent articles by AGL and RCR, the wireless infrastructure industry is facing a serious labor shortage in conjunction with the rapidly advancing rollout of 5G.    

A recent panel titled “AI and AR: Working Smarter, Not Harder” at the 2019 Wireless West Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, discussed new technologies that may help address the impending labor shortage.

CTIA forecasts in its report The State of Wireless 2018 that mobile network operators (MNOs) will deploy 800,000 new small cells in the USA by 2026. That is more than twice the number of sites that have been deployed over the last 25 years. While small cells may be smaller than traditional macro sites, the deployment process remains labor intensive and the ongoing management of those leases and site data is no less complex.  

The panel focused on evolving technologies in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Augmented Reality (AR) that can ease the strain of a labor shortage and even accelerate 5G deployments in three specific areas.

Inspections and audits of tower sites

AI and drones can be combined to save money and increase safety by reducing the number of truck rolls and tower climbs. Former tower climber Sam McGuire described how Red Mountain Scientific uses AI techniques to capture and analyze drone inspection data and generate tower-specific reports for visual inspections, closeout packages, and asset audits.

Site acquisition for small cells

Scout, a mobile application developed by Overlay and Md7, uses AR to accelerate the field-to-final process by capturing and synchronizing field data with the back office. Chris Morace, Founder of Overlay, noted that, by combining Scout with a survey-grade GPS, the app creates a video audit for virtual site walks as well as a 3D model that can be used to measure the site and auto-generate final deliverables such as candidate packages, 1As, topographic surveys, and CAD files.

Lease reading and ongoing lease data management

For every site on-air, there are numerous lease and other real estate-related documents that have to be maintained and managed throughout its operational life. MNOs spend tens-of-millions of dollars each year to read and reread cell site leases to identify key terms such as rent obligations and upgrade rights.  This often results in inconsistent interpretation of these key terms further costing MNOs millions of dollars. Md7 uses Machine Learning and AI software to find and maintain key lease provisions and categorize data. This allows Md7 to increase the accuracy and reduce the time needed for file audits and other ongoing lease management decisions as well as keep this information up-to-date to avoid rereading leases in the future.

Conclusion

The panel, which also included Casey Lynch, a Professional Land Surveyor and founder of Rancho Land Services in Romana, California, all agreed that the key to a successful implementation is for the wireless infrastructure industry to embrace these evolving technologies. It is not enough for the developers of AI and AR to learn about wireless infrastructure. We must learn about their tech, and the sooner the better.


Md7 at Wireless West 2019

In Case You Missed the Wireless West Conference

This year’s Wireless West Conference has come and gone. People traveled from all over to the gorgeous desert of Scottsdale, Arizona to participate in three days of education from thought leaders, expert analysts, networking opportunities and much, much more. Md7 was also on hand and if you didn’t have the pleasure of attending yourself, we just wanted to take the opportunity to quickly catch you up on all that you missed.

Md7 made sure that the event got started off on the best foot possible by way of a “Welcome Reception Party” that we hosted. Not only did we get the chance to rub elbows with hundreds of people from the wireless industry, but the food and drinks were great, and there was a Mariachi band to help set the tone for everything that followed.

AI/AR Panel Discussion

Perhaps the most informative attraction of this year’s conference was a fascinating panel discussion on artificial intelligence and augmented reality. While this wasn’t explicitly an Md7 presentation, our representatives were there in full force on the panel to give their thoughts on possibly one of the most important tech trends in the wireless industry to come along in a generation. Others were also present, including those representing everything from drone technology to laser scanners (for mapping) and more.

5G Labor Issues

The overwhelming agreement from people in attendance at the conference – something that was also echoed during the panel discussion – was that the infrastructure industry is simply not ready for the impending 5G revolution we are about to go through. This is due in no small part to a labor shortage – there simply aren’t enough people available to fill the jobs needed to get the work done that 5G will require.

Md7 is just one of the many examples of a company that is trying to use technology to solve this problem. During the AI/AR discussion we talked about our new tool, Contract Analyzer to read and sort lease data and the Scout Mobile App, which allows wireless carriers to work “smarter, not harder” in terms of 5G preparation – all without having to add more people to their teams.

All told, this year’s Wireless West Conference was truly an unforgettable experience – and we’re already looking forward to next year.


Md7 Scout Mobile App

Md7 Partners with Overlay to Develop Scout App

MOBILE AUGMENTED REALITY FOR RAPID SMALL CELL DEPLOYMENTS

SAN DIEGO, CA, and MENLO PARK, CA – January 23, 2019 – Md7 and Overlay have partnered to develop Scout, a cutting-edge computer vision and mobile augmented reality app, to accelerate the site acquisition and land surveying process for small cells in the wireless industry.  

Scout accelerates the site acquisition process by enabling virtual site walks as well as automating pole measurements and the creation of candidate packages.  It eliminates the need for back office processing of the data gathered in the field because all field data is uploaded from the app and is immediately accessible through a complementary web portal called Base.  Base manages search rings and auto-populates candidate packages and site sketch templates as soon as the field data is uploaded from Scout.

Scout is also designed to accelerate the land surveying process for small cells through the generation of 1A and topographic surveys.  When paired with survey-grade GPS, Scout uses Visual Inertial Odometry to build an accurate 3D scene of the objects and planes around each candidate pole.  This data is also immediately accessible through Base, which auto-generates 1A and topographic surveys in PDF format for review and approval by a licensed surveyor.

Tom Leddo, the Chief Strategy Officer for Md7, noted that “the small cell deployment model requires innovation in every phase, that is why we partnered with Overlay.  We have been working together to develop what we believe will be a disruptively innovative tool to accelerate the deployment of countless small cells over the next three to five years.”  

Overlay CEO Chris Morace said, “For too long deployment of our most critical infrastructure has relied on pushing paper and making phone calls, resulting in more cost and missed deadlines. Overlay uses the latest technology to pull critical data from the corporate office into the field and makes the results of that field work immediately accessible to the extended enterprise.  This technology is transforming the way networks are built.”

ABOUT MD7

Based in San Diego, California, and Dublin, Ireland, Md7 is a network real estate management company serving the telecommunications industry since 2003.  Md7 has provided a variety of site acquisition, lease management, and negotiation services for over thirty operators in twenty different countries and twelve different languages in Asia, Africa, Europe, North America and Oceania.

To learn more about Md7, please visit https://www.md7.com/

ABOUT OVERLAY

Based in Menlo Park, California, Overlay is the pioneer and leader in the category of Field Intelligence Software.  Overlay brings together GNSS, AR, computer vision, AI, and back office data sets to transform the way our critical infrastructure is deployed, built, and managed.

To learn more about Overlay, please visit: https://www.overlay.com.ar


Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Md7

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Md7

Overview of Maslow’s Hierarchy

Psychologist Abraham Maslow theorized that all human behavior is motivated by the drive to satisfy five essential human needs, which are satisfied in the following prescribed order: Basic Physiological Needs, Safety Needs, Love and Belonging, Esteem, and Self-Actualization.  

Because people often spend more time fulfilling initial needs (such as the need for air, water, food, shelter, etc. –Basic Physiological Needs) before they can address the needs that follow (such as the need for personal security, order, and stability, etc. – Safety Needs), Maslow’s hierarchy is commonly depicted as a pyramid such as the one shown above, with each hierarchy shown as increasing smaller levels of the pyramid.  Someone who has met their physiological and safety needs may ascend up the pyramid towards friendship and a sense of connection (Love and Belonging), then towards respect, self-confidence, status (Esteem), and may eventually achieve their full potential in creativity, spontaneity, problem solving, acceptance of facts, etc. (Self-Actualization).

Every person is capable and has the desire to move up the hierarchy toward a level of self-actualization.  Unfortunately, progress is often disrupted by a failure to meet lower level needs. Life experiences, [such as the] loss of a job, may cause an individual to fluctuate between levels of the hierarchy.

Maslow theorized that with respect to the first four levels, often referred to as deficiency needs (D-Needs), the motivation to meet these needs become stronger the greater the period they are denied.  For example, the longer a person goes without food, the hungrier they become.

With respect to the final level of the hierarchy, self-actualization, often referred to as growth or being needs (B-Needs), fulfillment is not driven by a lack of something, but rather from a desire for personal growth.  “When a deficit need has been ‘more or less’ satisfied it will go away, and our activities become habitually directed towards meeting the next set of needs that we have yet to satisfy. These then become our salient needs. However, growth needs continue to be felt and may even become stronger once they have been engaged.”

What does this have to do with Md7?

Md7 strives to create a culture where each team member has the support and resources to reach the top of Maslow’s pyramid: self-actualization.  This is where motivation increases as individuals desire to reach their full personal potential. However, achieving this is easier said than done.  

Whether we work at Md7 or the proverbial salt mines, the first two needs at the bottom of the pyramid—Physiological and Safety—can be met by simply having a job and using your paycheck to acquire these most basic desires.

As we climb up the pyramid, the Md7 Core Value of “Respect for the Individual” is an effort to create a culture that meets Maslow’s third and fourth needs: Love and Belonging and Esteem.  Through our effort to treat each person with respect—a form of love—we build friendships, family, social groups, and intimacy that all eventually lead to confidence and self-esteem in our team members.

Finally, as one transitions from Esteem to Self-Actualization, our D-Needs decrease and our B-Needs increase.  We become motivated to discover our individual and collective potential. Md7 hopes each team member will reach the top of Maslow’s pyramid, not just to help Md7 grow but also because it is fun and motivating to see people deeply fulfilled.

Source: McLeod, S. A. (2018, May 21). Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Retrieved from https://www.simplypsychology.org/maslow.html – which is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 3.0.


Md7 Seasons Greatings 2018

Happy Holidays

The Md7 Düsseldorf Team
The Md7 Düsseldorf Team


Md7 Announces ISO 9001:2015 Certification in Europe

Dublin, Ireland – 27 November 2018 – Md7 is pleased to announce that its European operation, Md7 International Telecommunications Ltd (MITL), has achieved ISO 9001:2015 certification. This certification is in addition to the company headquarters, in San Diego, achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification earlier this year.

ISO 9001:2015 is the most recognized and widely used business management system in the world, designed to help organizations meet and exceed the expectations and needs of their customers and other interested parties. As part of the certification process, the entire Md7 team in Europe participated in an audit of its business operations in Dublin, Ireland; Maastricht, the Netherlands; and Dusseldorf, Germany.

John Cahill, Vice President of Business Development, noted that “Achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification in both the USA and Europe is a great accomplishment and provides a foundation for maintaining quality as Md7 continues to grow globally.”

Md7 maintains a focus on quality throughout the company by embracing its six Core Values. In particular, two of the core values, Extreme Service and Continuous Improvement, guide Md7 in maintaining quality through well-defined and documented processes, proactive client communication, and the ongoing development of LiveTrack®, which automates workflow to eliminate errors.

This certification process formalized the Md7 Quality Policy, which states:

Md7 delivers innovative solutions through its Business Process Manual (BPM), which uses:

  • ISO 9001:2015;
  • our Core Values; and
  • any applicable legal requirements
    to provide a framework to guide the organization in documenting, measuring, and continuously improving our practices.

ABOUT MD7

Based in San Diego, California, and Dublin, Ireland, Md7 is a turnkey site development and real estate management company serving the telecommunications industry since 2003. Md7 has provided a variety of site acquisition, lease management, and negotiation services for over thirty operators in twenty different countries and twelve different languages in Asia, Africa, Europe, North America and Oceania.

To learn more about Md7, please visit https://www.md7.com/.


FCC Building

FCC Takes Steps to Accelerate Wireline and Wireless Broadband Deployment

FCC recently issued its Third Report and Order and Declaratory Ruling, which takes several steps to facilitate deployment of wireline and wireless networks. The biggest step is the adoption of “one-touch make-ready” (OTMR). OTMR will speed deployment time and reduce costs for certain utility pole attachments by letting a new attacher perform work required to make the pole ready for the new attachment. This improves the current process, in which owners of existing attachments perform make-ready work on their attachments. OTMR applies in 30 states; some governmental bodies in the remaining 20 states have already enacted their own OTMR rules, with other jurisdictions likely to follow.    

The FCC clarified issues related to pole attachments. First, new attachers are responsible for damage they cause to existing attachments, but not for consequential damages such as those resulting from a service outage. Second, new attachers are not responsible for the cost of work required to bring a pole with pre-existing violations into compliance with safety and construction standards.

The FCC made official its longstanding policy that attachers may overlash – attach new cables to existing ones – without prior approval from a pole-owning utility. Utilities may require notification up to 15 days prior to overlashing, but the utility can only object if the overlash will “compromise the safety or integrity of existing electric distribution and communications infrastructure.”  

The FCC addressed outdated rate disparities for local exchange carriers (LEC), who are often charged higher rates for pole attachments than “similarly situated” telecommunications providers. Previously, a LEC had to prove it was “similarly situated” to telecommunications providers. With this Ruling, the burden shifts to the utility to show the LEC is NOT similarly situated in order to justify charging the LEC higher attachment rates.

The FCC ruled that moratoria on the deployment of telecommunications services or facilities violate federal law. The FCC noted that temporary moratoria for planning purposes or government study are generally not allowed, nor are moratoria that delay review of applications “until pending local, state, or federal legislation is adopted.” The FCC stated that emergency moratoria may be allowed, but only if competitively neutral; necessary to address emergency, disaster, or public safety needs; and targeted to geographic areas affected by disaster or emergency.

It will be interesting to see how these provisions play out, and it is encouraging to see the FCC take steps to accelerate wireline and wireless broadband deployment.


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