Provide Management Consulting to IT Department

Type of Service: 
Management Consulting
Country: 
Saudi Arabia
Industry: 
Telecommunications Services
Duration: 
6 months
Challenge: 

To provide management consulting services to the client, a large telecommunications services giant. The main challenge assigned was to help the client reduce the errors on their main customer-facing site, serving over 700,000 customers. The site allowed customers to login, manage their existing services, request new services, and view their billing details.

At the start of the engagement, the site was experiencing approximately 35,000 run-time errors on a daily basis. The underlying technology was Java Enterprise Edition, and all of the errors were being recorded in the server's logs. It was Systematic Computer Science's responsibility to tackle this pile of errors.

On a long-term basis, it was also our responsibility to provide guidance on how to prevent new errors from occurring, and this required analysis of the IT department's organization, technical practices, and staff abilities.

Solution: 

To tackle the immediate problem of poor quality on the client's customer site, Systematic Computer Science developed a log analysis tool to summarize and prioritize errors. This was followed by either diving into the code ourselves to identify and fix the root cause of the problem, or by alerting the responsible developer. All errors were tracked and controlled via an issue-tracking system.

The larger, more important problem of preventing future errors took a greater amount of time, done in parallel to the immediate task. Systematic Computer Science spent time understanding the organization's vision, structure, and staff, and subsequently prepared a report detailing recommended changes to solve several problems, including:

  • poorly founded choice of an agile process methodology
  • several critical flaws in the application of the methodology
  • low level of teamwork
  • severe technical flaws
  • questionable focus on tools at the expense of process

Benefits: 

Over the course of a few months, the error rate sank from approximately 35,000 per day to less than 2,000, a reduction of over 94%. The customer site was noticeably affected by this drastic reduction, considering that several critical errors that would interrupt the customer's progress were solved. The remaining errors were in large part due to customer's disconnecting during a service request. This significant and very visible improvement of the customer site's quality saved the client money and won them customer loyalty.

Systematic Computer Science also presented to the client's senior management their report on improving quality by addressing the process, technical, and staff flaws.