Oracle streamlines Superonline's order processing

Turkish fiber-optic network operator Turkcell Superonline last year started streamlining its back-office systems in a bid to boost revenue by 35%.

The firm turned to Oracle Communications to improve its fiber-to-the-building order management and service fulfillment capability, and says the approach will boost its ability to roll out converged services on other access technologies, including fiber to the cabinet and home, and xDSL, by separating the service from the underlying technology.

Ibrahim Gokalp, Turkcell Superonline’s network systems manager, claims the new approach could slash the time taken to deploy new services by up to 75%, by decoupling the commercial products from the underlying network technologies. The system currently handles 32,000 orders per month, 875,000 service locations and 40,000 points-of-presence.

The problem

Turkcell Superonline had three main goals when it enlisted Oracle: to enable it to create services independent of the access technology used; to offer fast order fulfillment times amid growing competition; and to improve its overall customer service by cutting the number of orders that fell out of the system.

The company operates 28,000 km of fiber backbone offering wholesale, corporate and residential services in ten Turkish cities, including the capital Ankara and Istanbul, the country’s largest city. The firm has pumped at least a billion Turkish lira ($531 million) into its fiber network over the past four years, resulting in typical residential download rates of 15.8 Mbps – more than double Turkey’s average of 6.1 Mbps -- and data rates of up to 1000 Mbps in some areas.

Since its foundation as a subsidiary of telco Turkcell in 2004, the operator had developed a centralized system covering order capture and generation, customer service, lifecycle management, provisioning and network inventory. The applications were linked by direct point-to-point connections between the hub and the remainder of Turkcell Superonline’s IT architecture.

The operator's existing custom set-up made it hard to amend IT systems because all changes had to be run through the hub -- lengthening time to market for new commercial services, which had to be cleared via the core several times to cover the different access technologies used. The system also provided limited visibility into the status of orders and losses, and had little in the way of data security.

Turkcell Superonline specified that a new, flexible IT architecture be developed that offers fast time to market for new services, consistency in the services offered and increased operational efficiency. It demanded perfect order capture, a clear definition of marketing and technical services, arrangement of business and technical tasks, breakdowns of sales orders, and integration with network infrastructure.

Turkcell Superonline dubbed its IT scheme Project Cosmos and was drawn to Oracle by promises of a fast turnaround.

Oracle leveraged its Rapid Offer Design and Order Delivery (RODOD) and Converged Service Fulfillment (CSF) solutions to help Turkcell Superonline address the problem, to streamline order lifecycle management. RODOD, the first solution to carry TM Forum certification, is designed to allow operators to deliver an increasingly complex range of services over a growing number of channels through a pre-integrated suite of applications that reduce time to rollout new commercial offerings and improve order lifecycle management efficiency. The firm claims its component-based approach is unique in the industry, and offers a cost-effective way for operators to ensure accurate order delivery.
Put simply, RODOD is designed to allow fast upgrades of order management system by allowing operators to select only the elements they need.

The elements deployed for Turkcell Superonline include Order and Service Management to provide the required breakdowns of core orders and tracking of the entire fulfillment lifecycle; Unified Inventory Management, which synchronizes the network and services; Automated Service Activation Platform, a product that configures services across various network elements and service platforms, and protects upstream systems from underlying network and technology changes; and Oracle’s SOA suite, which is used to integrate the solution with in-house systems and handled the core messaging between those systems

Rajeev Tankha, senior director of product marketing at Oracle, says the components deployed offer Turkcell Superonline’s operational teams far greater visibility into the status of orders and the cause of failures. “Now, Turkcell Superonline tells us that with each stage of the process, detailed information is available,” says Tankha.

Besides the expected reduction of 75% in time-to-market already noted by Turkcell Superonline’s Gokalp, the new set-up has also allowed the firm to slash the time taken to implement changes in its network and NMS systems. One new network element was rolled out in the space of a week, compared to a typical deployment time of between six and eight weeks previously. Tankha states the figure is a good example of what can be achieved with its modular architecture.

Other benefits cited by Turkcell Superonline include the ability to decouple its legacy centralized CRM system from the remainder of its architecture, meaning IT changes no longer need to be aligned to the CRM’s release schedules. Business operations have been simplified through greater automation and improved data consistency, while new capabilities have been developed, including technical service qualification, which the firm states cuts order fallout and adds the ability to cut marketing costs with service-agnostic campaigns. The firm has also seen an overall reduction in the number of changes required to roll out new services.

A phased approach

In the first phase, Turkcell Superonline took the new architecture live last June for its fiber-to-the-building services.

The first phase is also providing valuable implementation information for the next round of the deployment. Siemens and Ericsson were enlisted to handle rollout in the initial stage along with various in-house Turkcell divisions, highlighting the importance of good communication. Other lessons include the need to minimize phase times to reduce the number of changes made, and planning for future migrations.

Now that system has been successfully up and running for six months, the firm is preparing for the next phase – deployment on its FTTH, FTTC and xDSL networks this year.