Group Service Revenue Assurance

/ / Revenue Assurance, Success Stories

Key Facts
Operator size: 180m
Technology: LTE, UMTS, GSM
Scope: Group Service for Domestic & Roaming RA
Initial error rate of test calls: 5%
Impact after 12 months: Error reduction worth €60m


Challenge

A passive only approach would still have unacceptable areas of RA risks

The Operator Group owns majority shares in over 20 national networks. The different networks include a wide range of currencies, cultures, market positions and Revenue Assurance maturity. After a selection process a vendor was chosen to install passive Revenue Assurance systems into the majority of the Group`s networks. This program would justify its costs by introducing standardised controls and checks into the billing processes of the networks. With over 180m connections and annual revenue approaching €10Bn  the risks of revenue losses caused by billing system errors and failures was sufficient enough for the Group to implement this program. The Group was also aware that passive testing alone of the billings systems would still leave them with unacceptable areas of uncovered risk.
Namely:

  • CDRs not being produced correctly
  • Call times and durations not reported accurately in the CDRs
  • Data volumes not recorded accurately
  • Roaming events being billed incorrectly
  • Passive RA systems not configured/updated or operated correctly by the OPCOs


Solution

Adding the RA licence to SITE, the operator was able to use the same infrastructure

The Group selected SIGOS to provide a Revenue Assurance Shared Service. The Group would set up an RA Shared Service Team in one of its larger networks and install a SIGOS SITE Test Call Generator System. The SITE system would include test call generators (probes) installed in each of the OPCOs countries. The RA Services Team would then be able to provide domestic and roaming active RA testing for each of the OPCOs. The Shared Services Team would become a centre of excellence and remove the need for each individual operator to build up and maintain this expensive skilled resource. The Group also leverages the efficiency of having the single RA Team and active RA system providing invaluable testing across all of its networks.

By its very nature, Revenue Assurance testing is not plug and play. There are many constantly changing variables requiring a testing tool to have an immense amount of flexibility and a large number of variables. The operators of the testing system must have vast knowledge of the huge variety of risks and potential issues which need to be tested for and analysed. They need to be experts in how to design and implement a test plan, to both identify issues and confirm where no issues exist. Recruiting and training the required expert staff is a process which takes many months. SIGOS will help the Group by initially providing a fully Managed Service with expertise and knowledge being transferred to the

Group staff who work alongside SIGOS. As the Group staff attain a level of expertise, SIGOS can hand over the full running of the service and simply provide support when required.


Conclusion

The investment in active RA was fully justified with actual ROI being less than one month

The Group has now added group-wide Active RA capability to cover the risks not covered by the Passive RA systems. By concentrating the expertise into one single Shared Services Team the Group has achieved maximum efficiency for a minimum investment. The Shared Service model lends itself to providing convenient benchmarking of the individual OPCOs` RA performance for assessment at Group level. If the Team detect issues which could have been detected by an OPCO’s passive RA systems, or continually detect the same unresolved issues , it can review existing processes to optimize.

The SIGOS RA solution is approved by TÜV SÜD BABT which allows the Shared Service Team to provide the OPCOs with testing processes and reporting they can present to their national telecoms regulators. The reports will prove that each OPCO has a robust process in place to detect billing and metering issues and prevents its subscribers from being overcharged.

The SITE test call system can be simultaneously used for Quality of Service monitoring in each of the networks to ensure that voice, data or messaging faults in the network core can be identified before customers complain. The Quality of Service while roaming can easily be tested, with SIM multiplexing making it simple to generate test calls whilst roaming in any of the Group´s networks. The system also allows  “Opportunity Loss” from failed and dropped test events to be quantified. These figures are used in the business cases for both the RA Department and the Network Teams.

The Group now has a tool which makes it easy to test new products and services, ensuring they are working correctly and are billed correctly before being launched and without causing delays in the very competitive markets where they operate. Some of these markets are proving very difficult to grow revenue, so leakage reduction is seen as a big contribution to overall performance.

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