Telefónica Selects TOA Technologies as a Global FSM Solution

As part of its recent major global IT transformation, Telefónica has selected TOA Technologies as its global field service management (FSM) solution provider. This is a global contract agreement for TOA to be the standard FSM provider with its ETAdirect solution suite, covering all 24 countries in which the telecom provider does business across Europe and Latin America.

The engagement will start immediately in the following six countries: Brazil, Spain, Chile, Argentina, Peru, and Colombia. This news announcement points to the following interesting facts:

  • A continued focus on customer experience through the field workforce: Of the multiple areas and more than a dozen technology pieces Telefónica plans to put in place as part of this broad IT transformation initiative, mobile workforce management (WFM) was the second technology to be selected. This was due to a time-sensitive focus on getting a handle on its primarily contractor-based field workforce (about 80 percent are contractors). The company had limited visibility into contractors' performance, which meant it also had limited visibility into customers' satisfaction at those appointments. Telefónica wanted a global FSM solution it could use to ensure a consistent customer experience across the board.

  • Cloud is no longer a risk - it's rather an advantage: Initially, Telefónica was reportedly looking for an on-premises WFM solution with an option for software as a service (SaaS). Mid-way through the selection process, Telefónica changed this to be a preference for SaaS - it recognized its ability to scale quickly. Currently, the first country to deploy, Brazil, is already on pace to launch ETAdirect by Q4 2013.

  • A best of breed (BoB) solution wins over a technology stack: Telefónica's leadership recognized the value of a BoB approach, especially for mobile WFM, leading to the selection of TOA. This is unique for a Tier One telco company that typically purchases with a technology stack mentality.

  • Mobility is accelerating the demand for field service automation: As consumer-grade mobile devices make their way into the enterprise, some businesses view it as a challenge - and others, like Telefónica, see it as an opportunity to gather better, more real-time data. In Telefónica's case, the company was on board with TOA's HTML5 browser-based app as it afforded the telco the ability to extend the same application across its whole workforce, both employees and contractors.

Why TOA Technologies?

Reportedly, TOA was selected primarily for the following reasons:

  • Most flexible and scalable mobile WFM solution: TOA met Telefónica's needs to have one solution that could be localized by each country's operations. This requirement also related to being applicable to all of its field workforce - contractors and employees - providing Telefónica with one view of its global field workforce.

  • Time to market: Because ETAdirect could be rolled-out quickly and regionally, it was the only solution that met the global IT team's goals for having a complete mobile WFM solution in place by its deadline.

  • Experience with SaaS: In the end, TOA proved that its unique and native SaaS approach was superior to the competition's solutions (which were hosted in a public cloud), based on reliability, durability, security, and scale.

  • Successful customer references: both globally and locally in-region.

It will be interesting to watch how TOA will be integrated to other Telefónica enterprise systems such as billing, accounting/back-office, inventory management, etc. Because the telco is undergoing a global IT transformation and the FSM component was just the second piece of its massive IT puzzle that was chosen, these other enterprise systems have yet to be chosen. The first piece of the IT puzzle was a fault management solution based on the Omega application. I don't think TOA's solution will have anything to do with this application because fault management falls under "assurance" and WFM is under "operations support and readiness."
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