Saving time saving money
Optimus, Portugal reacts quickly and offers an improved user experience.
The Portuguese market is small but mature with 10 million people and 17 million mobile phones. As a result, competition between operators is fierce and subscribers have high expectations. In response Optimus set a strategy to increase operational efficiency and deliver the best services in the fastest time to stay ahead.
As a quadruple play operator with mobile, fixed, internet and TV offerings, Optimus had a legacy of separate systems and this was making it difficult for them to run their operations efficiently. In turn this was having a negative effect on costs and subscriber services. Recognizing the need for consistency between mobile and wireline processes, Optimus sought a solution which would manage provisioning across the board. For this they turned to Ericsson.
First to market
Ericsson Multi Activation (EMA) is an automated solution for provisioning and order management, enabling Optimus to consolidate all its activities in this area. The solution was introduced through an Ericsson-led Systems Integration project and as a result Optimus has gained the ability to launch new services quickly at the same time as reducing costs. A faster time-to-market gives it a real advantage over its competitors. Júlio Santos, Director of Q.Tec/Business Information Systems, Optimus, Portugal comments: "We can activate, deactivate and change services with almost immediate effect. Now we can get customers up and running on our network in minutes, so they can make calls straight away and we can receive revenues more quickly. The service has been a great success, the number of transactions in the network has doubled and we have seen no problems."
Optimus launched its innovative TAG tariff in 2008, which offers unlimited usage between TAG users, including voice and video calls, SMS, MMS and Messenger. The package also offers converged communication between mobile and PC. The offering targets the highly demanding youth segment so it was vital that users were configured quickly and accurately and were active on the system as soon as possible. The EMA solution played a major role in launching the successful TAG service and continues to have a huge impact on the running of the network today. In fact, it is so critical that when Optimus was asked how long its TAG service could remain up and running without the aid of the EMA solution, the response was "just half an hour."
People are witnessing a new consistency across mobile and fixed services and a real improvement in the overall quality of customer service. New users experience faster activation times: a reduction from hours to seconds has been achieved. People also experience enhanced management of their accounts and improved error handling. As a result there are fewer calls to Optimus' customer call center which has a positive impact on operational costs.
The ongoing partnership between Optimus and Ericsson has been so strong that during the latest evaluation customer satisfaction was rated 100 percent. This close working relationship has been a major contributing factor to the success of the EMA solution. As well as being a technical partner, Ericsson has become a business partner to Optimus, advising on new developments and improvement activities. Miguel Alves, Solution Architect, Ericsson explains: "This solution is very much dependent on a good relationship with the customer. Without that we would not be able to offer a solution which is so well tailored for their needs. And those needs are not static; we are talking about something that is very dynamic. Ways of working are updated all the time and an ongoing dialog and flexible solution is needed in order to adapt quickly."
Customer: Optimus, Portugal
- Increase capability to launch new services
- Streamline operations
- Improve service delivery
- Ericsson Multi Activation
- Systems Integration
- Faster activation times
- Reduced costs
- Less pressure on the call center
- More robust processes with in-built scalability
As consumers rely on the availability of their phones more and more, operators need to offer stability of services.
Automated provisioning solutions provide faster activation, better management of the customer lifecycle and instant change management. For users this translates into immediate response, whether they are joining the network, making changes to their contracts or reporting errors. On another level it also contributes to a better portfolio of services and a more flexible offering as operators are in a better position to develop more tailored offerings and launch new and exciting services.
Optimus is a relatively young operator, having launched in 1998 from a union of the Sonaecom Group and Orange/France Telecom. Optimus is now a fully integrated telecommunications operator offering fixed, mobile and ISP services across Portugal.
The market in Portugal is characterized by a strong penetration rate of mobile services, high technical innovation and prices below the European average. This makes it a challenging market to operate in and means that forward thinking, efficient operations and customer loyalty are essential ingredients for success.