2010 – present
About the Customer:
BICS is recognized as a world-class voice carrier and the leading provider of mobile data services. The company offers a holistic suite of innovative solutions and services within Voice, Messaging, Roaming, Data & Connectivity, 5G, IoT, Cloud Communications, Capacity Management, and other domains. Headquartered in Brussels, BICS serves 2,500+ enterprise and operator customers across Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa, and the Middle East.
The global rush for cloud adoption fuels the demand for leased lines – private circuits offered by telecom carriers, which enable direct low-latency connectivity between the customer’s premises and the data centers of cloud service providers.
As cloud connect services and capacity management are trending in the telecommunication industry, BICS aimed to extend its reach within this domain. However, the provisioning of leased lines is inherently complex and time-consuming, as it involves RFQ processing, order feasibility checking, manual routing, connection testing, and activation of an existing line or deployment of a new one.
Initially, BICS required a few business days or even weeks to cover all the related tasks – from order processing to line activation. Furthermore, to make leased line orders, customers had to constantly be in touch with BICS employees. Hence, the fundamental challenge for BICS was to streamline the entire cloud connect provisioning lifecycle while improving customer experience.
Consequently, BICS came up with an ambitious idea to develop the Cloud Connect Portal – an advanced solution based on the Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) and Software-defined networking (SDN) approaches, which would:
- Provide secure and seamless cloud communications for customers across the globe
- Automate manual processes on all stages of the leased line provisioning services
- Enhance customer experience by making leased line ordering ultimately simple and swift
As a global IT service provider with 20+ years of experience in telecom projects and a long-term partner of BICS, Infopulse took the lead in the development of the Cloud Connect Portal.
The leased line provisioning lifecycle of BICS involves three correlated OSS/BSS systems – a capacity management tool, an internal project management system, and a solution that monitors the health of the leased lines. Our team customized and fine-tuned these systems to serve as the backbone for the Cloud Connect Portal. In addition, Inmanta, an intent-based service orchestrator was involved, which automates manual leased line processes and accelerates the connection of BICS network to the hyper-scalers.
The interface of the Cloud Connect Portal was designed with a strong focus on UX/UI. The solution combines a fresh pixel-perfect design with a seamless user journey, where the steps required to order a leased line were reduced to a bare minimum.
In just a few clicks, BICS’ customers can access an intuitive order form to select:
- The preferred Point of Presence and cloud service provider – Microsoft Azure, AWS, Google Cloud, or Oracle
- Leased line type (protected/unprotected, diverse routed)
- The required bandwidth – 50/100/200/300/400/500 MB/s or 1/2/5/10 GB/s Ethernet
- Contract terms, ranging from 1 day to 12 months
After filling out the form and placing contact information, the customer can add comments in case the leased line order requires specific arrangements. Once the order is processed, the customer receives a notification about the line activation and the billing start date.
To address BICS’ aim for the expansion of leased line services, the Cloud Connect Portal was designed as a white-label solution. Telco customers of BICS can access the portal, tailor the interface to their brand, and resell the leased lines to the end customers – banks, retailers, or other companies who require low latency connectivity between their on-premises facilities and data centers of hyper-scalers.
The Cloud Connect Portal developed by Infopulse became a new powerhouse for the leased connectivity services of BICS. By modernizing and aligning multiple internal systems and providing an easy-to-use interface, the solution helped BICS reach new heights in operational efficiency and service delivery excellence.
To summarize, by harnessing the capabilities of the Cloud Connect Portal, BICS managed to:
- Optimize time, costs, and resources through the automation of manual processes across all stages of the cloud connect provisioning services
- Reduce the quote-to-bill time, which previously involved 7 employees and 3+ days of consolidated work, to just 1 minute
- Facilitate order requests and enhance customer experience with a renewed intuitive interface
- Exclude redundant communications and management efforts by providing direct access to the portal for customers
- Drive new revenue streams by offering a white-label version of the portal for telecom companies
Infopulse and BICS plan to continue enhancing the Cloud Connect Portal. The next project stage involves API integration capabilities, as well as a bandwidth upgrade, and cloud-to-cloud connectivity.
Last but not least, after engineering the solution, Infopulse was shortlisted for the 2022 Network X Awards – a prestigious annual event that recognizes innovation and excellence across the Telecom industry. The Cloud Connect Portal made it to the finals within the “Outstanding Cloud Automation Solution” category, along with other projects by major industry leaders, including Enterprise Web, Nokia, and ZTE.
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