Today, telecommunications companies face intense competition due to deregulation and a fast maturing market. The rules have changed dramatically in both the fixed line and mobile segments of the market. Two of the companies, firmly focused to generate innovative services are Deutsche Telekom and mobilcom Communications GmbH. Both companies face quite diverse constraints. mobilcom markets mobile phone contracts under its own name, and at its own expense, for carriers such as T-Mobile, Vodafone and E-Plus. Deutsche Telekom, on the other hand, is one one of the largest European communications companies, with three strategic growth areas: broadband/fixed-network, business customers and mobile communications.
The business models represent the complexity of the market place: one is a customer of the other, and they each offer complimentary as well as opposed services. Nevertheless, what mobilcom and Deutsche Telekom share is their focus on technology for competitive advantage. On the other hand, some of their most pressing issues turn out to be quite similar: cutting costs, increasing performance.
Deutsche Telekom had to establish a billing system with 20.000 users, that would coordinate mission critical processes for 40 million customers in the fixed line telephone area . With its new SAP landscape, Deutsche Telekom was able to halve its development and operating costs and achieved performance gains of a factor of six. Similarly, mobilcom faced the challenge of setting up a high performant SAP system to service 4.56 million customers basically from scratch, with operations starting in January 2005. Both aimed to address their constraints with nimble software and a robust, flexible, scalable, and cost-effective infrastructure – and found the answer in the alliance of SAP and Sun.
A strong Telecom Service Delivery Framework
Jointly, Sun and SAP provide powerful solutions that support the specific standards, processes, and challenges of the industry. These solutions consist of the SAP for Telecommunications portfolio running on Sun systems, enhanced with Sun‘s Telecom Service Delivery Framework. It supports more effective business processes, real-time access to data across the organization, allowing for the optimization of interactions with customers, dealers, and anyone else touched by the business. The framework is fueled by Java technology, and a portfolio of products based on the power of networks and the idea that the same software should run on many different kinds of systems and devices. On the other hand, the framework is tied together with SAP for Telecommunications, building on the core strengths of the mySAP Business Suite.
For mobilcom the SAP and Sun combination turned out just right, when it decided to make a radical change by switching to a new solution in 2003. It implemented a, in-house SAP infrastructure with IS Telco, financial accounting, controlling and ERP classic solution. Installation, operation, and training of mobilcom‘s IT personnel came from Sun due to its expertise and its proposal for a joint infrastructure with a system architectures residing both in-house and at customer sites. As a result, it provides a flexible, cost-efficient virtual community between mobilcom and its clients. For mobilcom it was also key to improve data security and ideally administer the SAP landscape for future requirements. Today, the Sun N1 Advanced Architecture, Sun N1 AA, tool optimizes the infrastrucuture and helps to keep utilization near capacity.
Extending web services with identity and access solutions
As telecommunications customers embrace web services by deploying a more services-oriented architecture, through SAP NetWeaver or otherwise, it becomes paramount for them to build a network identity infrastructure that is scalable, secure, and cost-effective. Sun offers a complementary portfolio of consulting services and workshops that leverage the vast experience with SAP, identity management, and network security. The „Sun Network Services for SAP Solutions“are a set of identity services and secure access that help customers to reap the benefits of collaborative business: faster access to various systems using single sign-on, single point of administration for user and access management, enforced consistent corporate security policies and remote access – easily, quickly, and securely extended to it‘s virtual community of employees, partners, and customers. In other words, ideal for the switch-over to more efficient telecommunications solutions.
Source: Sun Microsystems