Telkomsel has built an enviable business. With 44.5 million customers, the PT. Telkom subsidiary is Indonesia’s largest GSM provider. However, the world’s fourth most populous country attracts healthy competition, keeping dominant players on their toes. A slew of new competitors, digital platforms, and services have triggered a war, or sorts. Asep Tjahjadi, vice president of IT operation and services, says rampant competition has transformed the market overnight. “The mobile telephone market has become increasingly competitive. New players and technologies have triggered brand, marketing, and price wars,” he says. “Every player tries to grab market share. Established players fight back, trying to retain their customers.”
This increasingly competitive landscape drove Telkomsel to rethink its service strategy — both in terms of its ability to satisfy ‘customer moments of truth’ and in terms of supporting IT services. The company wanted to bring more agility to its whole operation. Tjahjadi knew that performing better ‘on top’ required better organization and workflow underneath, and he didn’t want IT processes to be forsaken in the scramble for continued market leadership.
FIRST, THE FRAMEWORK
With twin demands of service responsiveness and innovation, IT had to move in many directions. However, consistently managing changes was a growing headache. Telkomsel engaged consultants to review IT workflow and processes, using the IT Infrastructure Library® (ITIL®) to establish the framework to better control its IT environment, increase efficiency, and reduce IT costs. Like most guidelines, however, ITIL is merely a starting point, and Telkomsel required a technology strategy that adhered to ITIL guidelines and embraced tools that managed IT environments as they related to critical business services. Therefore, the company focused on three key requirements: responding to changing requirements, controlling business-critical IT configurations, and becoming more responsive to change (to protect its environment from the side effects of technology innovation).
Telkomsel was first introduced to Business Service Management (BSM), the most effective approach for managing IT from the perspective of the business, through an earlier implementation of BMC Remedy Service Desk. Tjahjadi says the company liked what it saw and decided to invest in the entire BMC Remedy IT Service Management Suite. Following a progressive rollout, the suite includes five core applications: BMC Remedy Service Desk, BMC Remedy Asset Management, BMC Remedy Change Management, BMC Remedy Knowledge Management, and BMC Service Level Management. It also includes the BMC Atrium Configuration Management Database (CMDB) to coordinate processes based on a single view of technology components.
Telkomsel chose Mitra Integrasi Informatika (MII) — a Metrodata subsidiary — as the BMC implementation partner. Tjahjadi says the company believes that MII has the capability required and proven track record to make the implementation successful. Telkomsel and MII had strong relationship even before the implementation of BMC Remedy Service Desk.
“We took a phased approach — one big bite would have been too much,” Tjahjadi says. “So we did it step by step, making sure we were successful before progressing to the next stage.”
The first phase focused on incident, problem, and change management. With no single point of contact — and with departments maintaining their own help teams — Tjahjadi described his service desk as chaotic. “Agents could be grabbed from wherever they stood. There was no mechanism or procedure to handle incidents and problems, so it was a bit chaotic,” he says of his 24-hour IT service desk, which, at the time, was managing more than 3,000 trouble tickets a month.
Now problems are handled through a standardized process. Similarly, incidents are managed through a single point of contact, with agents performing to key performance indicators (KPIs) for handling and closure.
Change management, the other critical piece to averting systems outage and service disruption, has been similarly formalised, embedding ITIL-aligned workflow to manage changes. The process intelligently prioritises changes. For example, changes can be categorised as ‘normal’ or ‘emergency,’ instructing Telkomsel’s support team about timing and urgency.
Finally, the addition of BMC Remedy Knowledge Management has institutionalised service desk learning and helps agents to find support information much faster.
ACCOUNTING FOR ASSETS
Telkomsel wanted a single picture of its IT assets and status over their full lifecycle — not just numbers and location, but maintenance records and vendor profiling. Instead, the company had different people separately managing asset classes — one person in charge of desktops, another managing the server network, and so on. This disconnect was problematic, as no one could view the entire topology. “Everyone had to gather his or her own data and distribute it to other people,” Tjahjadi says. “Everyone who handled infrastructure managed his or her own inventory system. You had to go to each person to get the information.” Thanks to BMC Remedy Asset Management, Telkomsel keeps all asset information in one place. In addition, the BMC Atrium CMDB will eventually provide a view of interrelationships among assets and business services. Further, with BMC Service Level Management, Telkomsel will open the door between customer services and the IT components supporting them, eventually understanding the impact of service variability on revenue.
ADDING SERVICE VALUE
Despite continued growth and the addition of ten million customers over the past year, Tjahjadi says the company is delivering better service at a lower cost. What’s more, the new platform has helped to streamline service innovation, including value-added services, such as ring-back tones, and a host of other offerings. “Right now, in the GSM arena, one of the trends is delivering value-added services. It’s very competitive and demanding on IT,” he says. “Customers can see our improvements. We bring new services to market much faster.”
Customer service responsiveness has also leapt ahead, he says. “We have a better sense of problems and issues. When customers call, we can turn things around much faster.” More importantly, perhaps, there are now fewer incidents — down from 3,000 to just 1,000 a month. “BMC makes everything more orderly and controllable,” Tjahjadi says.