Vodafone Ireland invests €120m in digital transformation project

29 May 2017

Madalina Suceveanu, chief technology officer, Vodafone Ireland. Image: Vodafone

The largest single transformation project undertaken by Vodafone Ireland will see integrated customer interface across fixed, TV, mobile and broadband.

Vodafone Ireland has embarked on a major €120m digital project that will transform its CRM, billing and order management capabilities across multiple channels.

In what Vodafone claims is a first for an Irish telecoms company, the system will consolidate all fixed, broadband, TV and mobile services into a single bill.

‘Overall, this is the biggest transformation programme we have ever undertaken in Vodafone Ireland, and addressing all segments: postpaid, prepaid, TV, broadband and all our channels online and in retail stores’

The ambitious programme, being spearheaded by CTO Madalina Suceveanu, will see Vodafone Ireland decommission 52pc of all of its current IT applications.

Suceveanu was also responsible for enabling Vodafone Ireland to achieve a world first by recently achieving 1Gbps mobile broadband speeds.

To limit interference to customers and staff, Vodafone’s new system will be rolled out on a phased basis, with existing bill-pay customers moving onto the platform by summer 2017.

They will be followed by pay-as-you-go users, and then business customers.

One channel to rule them all

Speaking with Siliconrepublic.com, Suceveanu stressed that the key development was the creation of an omni-channel system addressing all aspects of the business.

“Overall, this is the biggest transformation programme we have ever undertaken in Vodafone Ireland, and addressing all segments: postpaid, prepaid, TV, broadband and all our channels online and in retail stores.”

The core of the transformation solution is based on Amdocs and Nokia’s charging and rating platform.

The new online site will be based on Adobe Experience Manager and Marketing Cloud, which will completely revamp Vodafone’s website and give customers access to personalised information, offers and buying options, while making it easy for the business to administer and update the website content and offers.

“Basically, to implement the new IT system, we are going to decommission over 50pc of current applications, leading to huge simplification and one integrated billing and CRM system for customers.

“This new system will be deployed in a very phased approach. The transformation is a very complex programme and we are making sure we will phase it and test everything we are doing, in a way to minimise any interference with customers.

“This is a full quad-play solution, which will provide omni-channel functionality. It’s going to be proof point for us, and a big benefit for our customers and the business.”

Suceveanu explained that the new system captures the essence of what 21st-century business will be all about. “A customer may start off by buying something on the website or carry on the interaction by talking with a customer in one of our call centres. Our people will have a unified view of the customer across the products and services.

“For customers and our agents, it will reduce friction and lead to simpler solutions to complex issues. It will be a game-changer,” Suceveanu said.

It emerged last year that Vodafone is to create 200 new jobs at a new European sales centre in Carrickmines as part of a €60m IDA-supported investment, growing the company’s headcount in Ireland to 2,000 people.

Vodafone is also collaborating with ESB on a €450m joint venture called Siro to deploy fibre across key Irish towns. Vodafone said that it passed 70,000 homes and businesses with fibre under Siro.

The company recently reported services revenue for the fourth quarter of €235m, up 2pc on an organic basis.

Vodafone said it grew its contract base by 48,800 customers, up 4.9pc year-on-year as industry trends see a continued shift away from prepaid. The total number of mobile customers stood at 1.95m.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years