Magicians that reveal secrets

Celfocus' work at du

Call To Magic — Mar 2017

Over the past decade, Celfocus has seen du innovate in some many ways, 2016 was no different.

Who is du?

du is the commercial name of Emirates Integrated Telecommunication Company (EITC) branded in 2006, year that marks the launch of mobile telecommunications services. It is one of the two telecom operators in the United Arab Emirates (Etisalat is the primary one) with over 7.7 million mobile customers, 674.000 fixed line subscribers, 337.000 home services subscribers and over 80.000 businesses. Currently offering mobile and fixed telephony, broadband connectivity and IPTV services. du also provides carrier services, a data hub, internet exchange facilities and satellite services for broadcasters across the UAE.

du's shareholder structure is around of 78% held by UAE Government entities and the remainder of the shares held by Public Shareholders including individuals who are UAE and non-UAE nationals and companies established in the UAE. du has nearly 2.000 people from over 60 countries working in their offices, which represent the rich diversity of nationalities in the country.

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How has Celfocus helped du over the years?

Celfocus has been working with du over the past 10 years and during this period we have launched several critical systems and initiatives that are core of du’s BSS. Having supported du’s architecture evolution over the years, delivering Order Management Transformation and CRM Unification programs and more recently, in 2014, du Sales Portal ( DSP- a web application which simplifies the sales process allowing du agents to perform electronic customer registration, process mandated by Telecommunications Regulatory Authority).

Year in review, 2016

When compared to past years, 2016 was clearly marked as an atypical year at du.

The introduction of the “Tamkee” and Chronic Issues” programmes, which came to address du’s architecture evolution by enabling an omni and cross channel experience fully integrated with a Centralize Product Catalogue, API Gateway, and Unified Billing and Charging solutions; and from another point of view aims to improve du’s service quality by solving critical production issues and ensuring systems more resilient and stable.

2016 was also a year of partnerships. Celfocus established an AD Managed Services Model Framework with du to ensure a continuous engagement process on specific application domains, and a back to back agreement with strategic players in du to ensure a win-win long-term partnership in the delivery of strategic projects.

Below are projects handled by Celfocus during 2016

DSP Apple

In Q2 2015 du assigned DSP Apple project to Celfocus and in March 2016, Celfocus took the DSP to Apple Stores across the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This project focused on taking the DSP to iPads (iOS 9), previously only available on windows tablets with chrome browser and desktops compatible with IE11 browser. Ultimately, allowing dealers to provide du’s customers with the opportunity to swap between pre-paid to post-paid, swap SIM cards, activate data bundles and mobile plans at Apple Stores. This project was delivered in 12 months and Celfocus was responsible for Siebel, DSP, CELFOCUS Order Management and EAI scope.

Despite Celfocus’ successful delivery, Apple Stores in UAE have yet to take full advantage of the DSP, as they are currently awaiting certification by the Emirates Identity Authority. This certification will allow Apple agents to validate customer Emirates ID in real-time, enabling electronic customer registration via iPad and TRA compliant.

DSP Retail (Phase 2)

During the Retail Phase I delivered by Celfocus in December 2015, Celfocus took the DSP to du corporate stores, allowing them to use DSP and all its operations for the first time, previously only available in du indirect channels (dealers). For Phase II delivered in November 2016, du progress one step further towards the Billing CX decommissioning and corporate stores gained access to an even larger amount of processes, such as: migrate between consumer-enterprise and enterprise-consumer, change contract ownership, change contract status, change mobile number, fixed line customer information lead capture, among others. With this new phase du’s new and existing customers can take advantage of a wide array of operations, regardless of their location in the UAE. This project was delivered in 8 months and Celfocus was responsible for Siebel, DSP, Celfocus Order Managment and EAI scope.

PCI DSS Compliance

In the end of 2015, du started a programme to ensure that all systems were eligible for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS). This programme has two distinct waves, one focused on business functionalities and driven by du Business and another one more technically driven by du IT. Celfocus has been engaged in these two different, where:

Wave#1 Business Driven

In August 2016 Celfocus established a partnership with du AD MSP to ensure business functionalities in DSP and Siebel applications compliance with PCI-DSS to strengthen the Credit Card information handling by du’s systems. Delivering this project in March 2016, du agents will be able to use the credit card information in a more reliable way by enforcing the credit card swiping capabilities to prevent errors and fraud, obfuscate credit card numbers when displayed on-screens, minimize the storage of sensitive credit card information and assure credit card owners authorization to auto payments actions. This project has a timeline of 8 months and Celfocus is responsible for Siebel and DSP scope.

Wave#2 IT Driven

In September 2016, the second wave of the PCI DSS compliance programme began with the goal of technically enhancing DSP and Siebel applications by reducing the chances of payment information leaks due to the use of insecure protocols and ensure the monitor and control access to sensitive credit card information. This project was delivered in 4 months and Celfocus was responsible for Siebel and DSP scope.

“Chronic Issues Programme” – Partnership with du AD MSP

As referred previously, du initiated a “Chronic Issues Programme” to solve critical production issues across the systems. Under this programme, Celfocus partnered with du AD MSP to deliver the following requirements:

DSP Resilience and Disaster Recovery

August 2016, marked the project’s kick off, 6 months later it delivered to production by migrating DSP Application components to a new data center to take advantage of its infrastructure technology and improve DSP stability, performance and resilience. This project also covered a Geo-Redundancy and Disaster Recovery solution with a second site built from the scratch and located in a different data centre.

Mobile Account Creation Process Enhancement

In September 2016, Celfocus kicked-off this project with the main goal of enhancing the Mobile Account Creation process currently in place at du. The new solution aims to improve the Mobile Account Creation by mitigating the activation process critical path in BSCS and changing DSP to perform account creation into Siebel and BSCS independently.

Despite Celfocus’ effort to deliver this project, du has yet to take full advantage of the new process, as is needed to solve external dependencies to deploy the project into production. This project was ready for production in 5 months and Celfocus was responsible for Siebel, DSP, CELFOCUS Order Management and EAI scope.

Replication Process Enhancement

In August 2016 Celfocus did the project kick-off and after 3 months was delivering it into production improving the existing end to end solution in place by reaching 100% of the KPIs defined. The main goal of Celfocus project was change the EAI solution to receive the customer and account billing data from CDC Informatica system instead of Billing system and push it to Siebel and LDAP systems.

Tamkeen Programme - UCBS Migration within a partnership

During the Q3 of 2016, Celfocus had the opportunity to be one of the System Integrators for one of the critical Tamkeen programme initiatives, uCBS migration. This project aims not only to replace du’s billing and charging system (Ericsson BSCS and Oracle IN by Huawei CBS) but will also allow CRM to emerge as the customer data master. This project will run during a time span of 2 years and Celfocus is responsible for CRM, DSP, CELFOCUS Order Management and ICM scope.

2016 was most definitely a great challenge for all those participating in du projects. However, it is the challenge behind each project that makes magic come alive and we’ve seen that happen at du for the past ten years.