How one telecom reimagined IT to better serve customers with more personalized content

Telecommunications providers are under a lot of pressure. Customers increasingly expect one provider to meet all their telephony, digital entertainment, and broadband needs. And as the choice of providers increases and switching costs decrease, it’s harder than ever to create and maintain loyalty. 

At UPC Polska, we know this challenge all too well. As a leading telecommunications provider in Poland, we serve 1.5 million of customers with 3 million services each day, via an IT infrastructure built over the past 20 years. While we still run several business critical applications on premises, it also became increasingly clear to us that we could not develop, test, and deploy new features fast enough in our existing environment. As a result, we came to a stark realization: we had to transform our IT infrastructure to accelerate our feature release process, or risk losing customers. 

After considering several options, we selectedGoogle Cloud’s Anthos because it offered a uniform management experience across our hybrid environment and easy application modernization. We wanted to implement Anthos as soon as possible, but also knew we needed an experienced global systems integrator to help us do so securely and effectively. As a result, we turned to Accenture who helped us complete the project in just six weeks.

Blending cultural and technology transformation

Our customer service application allows us to build highly personalized relationships with over a million customers. Since rapid feature releases are critical to our commercial success, that application was one of the first targets for modernization with Anthos. Accenture came in, worked hard to understand our architecture, and provided the cloud-first strategy and assurance we needed to confidently migrate the app to the new hybrid environment. 

With the support of Google Cloud and Accenture, our team embraced the shift in management and development models from Waterfall to Agile. Although this was a difficult transition due to significant technological and infrastructure shifts and changes in processes, responsibilities, and ways of working, it ultimately increased speed-to-market on new features .

To help ensure success for our DevOps team with this new approach, we deployed Anthos in our on-premises data centers. With Anthos, we can uniformly set policy at scale and continuously release features without worrying about security, vulnerability management or downtime across different environments. Our developers can then focus on writing better code, while operators use Anthos to effectively manage and run those applications anywhere. Accenture further drove the cloud-first DevOps culture shift we needed to make this all work, through training and support that quickly got our staff up to speed.

The biggest advantage of working with Google Cloud and Accenture to deploy Anthos has been increased engagement among our staff. Teams are working passionately to achieve as much as possible because they can now focus on their core responsibilities rather than infrastructure management. Anthos helps us control which workloads, features, and data go into the cloud, and which are better suited for our on-premises infrastructure. Anyone working on this project today at UPC Polska would tell you that Anthos gives us the best of both worlds—the agility and speed of the cloud along with the power and comfort of still being able to use our traditional on-premises infrastructure.

With the incredible collaboration between our team, Accenture, and Google Cloud, we have the development, testing, and production clusters we need integrated into our Agile development process. Now, both developers and operators enjoy increased scalability, stronger system resiliency, and more knowledge about containers.

Making efforts count

Everything we have done with Accenture and Google Cloud is driven by our commitment to creating, delivering, and improving the quality of services we offer to our 1.5 million customers. Personalization at that scale can be challenging, even with all the right technologies and DevOps strategies in place. Luckily, we have an impressive team and plenty of support through Google Cloud and Accenture. With our IT infrastructure and culture working together as part of a more Agile model powered by Anthos, the sky’s the limit for our personalization efforts, which frees us to dream up more ways to serve our customers. For example, we’re exploring projects like Software Defined Access Networks, cloud-based CRM, more personalized customer experiences, smart home technology, integrations between mobile and fixed networks, and an ever-growing portfolio of content and services. As we enter this new and fast-paced time in UPC Polska’s history, we look forward to working with Accenture and Google Cloud to better serve our customers.

Read the full case study to learn more about how UPC partnered with Google Cloud and Accenture on this project.

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