Transformation of Network Planning & Design Processes

Client: E-Plus, Germany
              (now owned by Telefónica Germany)
Industry: Telecommunications
Implemented product:
Comarch NGNP (Next Generation Network Planning)

With 22,7 million customers, the E-Plus Group is Germany’s third largest mobile telecommunications network operator and since 2000 belongs to the Dutch telecommunication group KPN.

E-Plus Group generates annual revenue of over €3 billion (2011) and employs more than 4,500 people in Germany.

The concept

The project assumed the implementation of the Comarch Next Generation Network Planning (NGNP) platform as a core of the transformation. But the main focus was on redesigning and simplifying processes, an essential step to maximize efficiency. Based on the redesigned processes all other project streams were aligned, like the new architecture of IT systems and interfaces or the way to prioritize and scope migration requirements.

Comarch’s approach was to take one stream and make it a leading one, called Business Transition, with two main tasks: redesign all processes independently of the platform requirements (using eTOM/ITIL as a reference and BPMN/EPC notation for Business Process Modeling), and then create a new platform architecture using standardized E-Plus modules and the Comarch NGNP package. In fact, those two areas coexisted throughout the whole project, supporting each other. To secure ROI, a Managed Services model extended with a bonus-malus payment option was applied.

The results

RESULT 3: Time-to-market improvement. Optimization of the network integration process.

Network integration is a crucial process for a mobile operator. To orchestrate the configuration changes, most service providers still use theso called ‘Turn On Cycle’ (TOC) process, which defines a number of changes to be executed in a defined period of time. Radio planners providethe network configuration at the end of the TOC process, which means that it is necessary to manually update the configuration for each day and each integration in the configuration management systems. This increases the risk of errors in the configuration and requires multiple planners to verify if the requested configuration is in place. Some errors can be identified only by drive tests or customer complaints. The solution proposed for E-Plus is based on a simplified process for network integration and tools with capabilities to support this process. The process identifies all integration happening in a period of time and divides the operation to physical integration and optimization. Within the first part of the process all deletion commands are prepared and integration is executed based on default parameters. After the necessary tests, the site becomes active, but locked for commercial traffic. A basket of other sites in the same state is created for a given network cluster. In the second part of the process this basket is optimized with a final configuration and integration for all sites.

Within this process the sites are marked as commercially available. The process itself is executed very closely to the data, which is automatically updated based on the network reconciliation process. This is vital to bring the planners close to the real network configuration, so the plan they prepare can be executed without creating problems in the network. It is just one of the process redefinition examples.

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