S-O-B Shades of Blue


Initially the assignment at the operator was to optimize the IT-development department. Due to the financial issues, in the base caused by bad mergers, the infrastructure, staff and procedures were fitting a company sized three times its needs.

Parts of the development was off shored to Romania. The development cycle was long, the complexity was high. Change Request were generated in the same speed as speaking. The first changes were made in this procedural part, and by stopping the off shoring. Within 9 months the total staff involved was reduced from 50 plus to 20, meanwhile increasing the output with a factor two. The latter was done by less red tape and more focus on the changes that really matter.

The next steps are changing the application architecture. A lot of commercial software is used, but in a way less that 30% of the functionality is only effective. Also the integration ratio is high. Applications cannot run independently. Next phase is unraveling this spaghetti.

After three month the assignment was extended to the operator’s network (data, voice, access, fiber). Main issues were the lack of maintenance on this part of the technology. Partly due to failing supplier support and partly due to staff, and knowledge, leaving the company. Main targets are modernizing/optimizing the network, right size the operational cost (including the suppliers support), re establish an agile skilled team of engineers.

Product development in a volatile market is part of the assignment. The Belgian market is identified as an old fashioned one. The base of this is the ATM based ADSL network, this limits the bandwidth and throughput of data.

Meanwhile the acquisition of the operator by the incumbent was supported. We were requested to assist in the integration process, which included the sale of the optical network and manage redundancies.


Your are off-shoring to China, or have the intention to do so? We offer an one day in house "cultural" awareness seminar. It is different from all other courses becasue it is base on real program management experience. Contact eric@s-o-b.biz for information.


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