Mobile network operator Globe Telecom, Inc. tapped Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud technology to accelerate the company’s digital transformation initiative and improve customer experience.
From its traditional setup using multiple data centers, servers which include specialized servers that do certain functions, and applications which were proprietary (as open source was not yet available) that took them a lot of time usually months and months before they can react to something that needs to be addressed, Globe has migrated its infrastructure to AWS.
The project aims to virtualize a lot of Globe’s infrastructure in order to look for opportunities to make things get faster and being able to bring quickly information together to address customers’ concerns.
“It’s really about the speed that we’re trying to go after. It’s really the speed where provisioning which used to take about several months, now we can do in a matter of days, and in emergency situations, we can do it in minutes, said Globe Telecom’s chief information officer Carlo Malana, adding that “there are certain things that we’re able to do now and we continue to get better.”
Since cloud is virtualized, Malana said, there are things that you can do that you were never able to do before. “For example, as we approach peak periods such as the holidays, with cloud, you can scale things up and essentially prepare a lot more for the customers’ demands and be able to downsize this when the demand is no longer there.”
Malana, however, revealed that Globe was not spared from challenges while embarking on digital transformation. “Right now, Globe has several hundred systems that it operates to keep things going and when you think about these systems, they don’t evolve at the same phase. Some systems are newer than others. Some providers and partners have moved faster in terms of how they have adapted to the cloud.
Malana also said that when you have very complex environment, you have one piece that can do everything that you need to do because it is super modern and super scalable, and you have the other piece that may takes a little longer, and other systems that are much older and are not able to respond and not easily migrated yet.
He mentioned that people is also a key challenge for them as they transform their business processes. “Moving from old to new and keeping everything still going without people noticing is really one of our biggest challenges. One of key challenges is on the people as we’re continuing to look, to upscale, and hire new talents that are more focused on the newer technologies and more depth.”
Globe stresses the importance of people in this cloud journey by ensuring that its employees have the requisite trainings and requisite ongoing reinforcement of these trainings to be able to have people who can think cloud. The company has a lot of courses to offer that allows its employees to be more aware of what’s possible with the cloud, and encourage them to further increase their technical capability.
Globe also has cloud initiatives that directly improve the experience of its customers, A lot, if not majority, of its initiatives are customer-focused or customer experience initiatives.
“We’re very focused on being “customer first.” We always look at the impact of what or how are things happening with our customers, and one of the things that we accomplished is through cloud technology. We can translate technology to something that is relevant for customers.”
Globe has several services or applications that elevate customer experiences because of cloud. Some of these include GlobeOne and Globe at Home which are both convenient tools to monitor and manage customers’ business transactions. With Digital Currency, Globe was able to combine GlobeOne customer experience and able to have the capability for customers who may not have Digital Currency to quickly have a digital wallet and be able to participate in this virtual type of transactions.
The migration is still going on because there are applications in the telco space that are very complex, Malana said. “We have platforms that are older, that are not necessarily able to take full advantage of the cloud. We’re still busy modernizing our applications especially on the backend systems.”