Qwest Communications takes control
of network tracking and saves the company millions of dollars
By utilizing the CMP® software
solution from Coastal Technologies Group (CTGi), not
only can Qwest track every one of the more than seven
billion monthly calls on their network, they can apply
a cost to each call.
After recognizing a 300 percent increase
in call volume over a two-year period, Qwest Communications
recognized the urgent need to make call tracking and cost
allocation a top priority. The company was relying on an
in-house system to monitor network traffic, but it did
not associate costs to calls, and this capability was now
critical. Recognizing that they did not possess the resources
or the necessary expertise in-house to efficiently create
an appropriate solution, the company turned to the experts.
Searching for a solution
When Qwest began their search for a network tracking solution, they had a stringent
set of requirements that needed to be met. “When we began the vendor
review process, we had billions of calls on the network with no good way
to track them,” said Kevin Klotz, Manager of Facility Cost and Systems
Management. “One important requirement was to track each call going
across the network and apply a cost to it on a call-by-call basis. We found
that other vendors could track the calls, but could not tell us how much
the transactions were costing us from an operational standpoint. This capability
was unique to the CTGi solution,” he said.
CTGi worked in partnership with Qwest to tailor their
CMP software specifically to meet the needs of Qwest. “We
had pre-determined formats for what we wanted to see in
our reports and how we wanted them to look,” commented
Klotz. Because Qwest was light on IT staff to handle this
project, CTGi created the application to automatically
send usage data to Qwest on a daily basis so that the information
is available whenever it is needed.
“The information we receive in the CMP reports is
critical to our company’s operations. We rely on
it for a multitude of uses and appreciate its ease-of-use.
If we do need to manually manipulate the data, it can be
done with a simple software program such as Access or Excel,” said
The business impact of a complete
network tracking solution
Since the initial implementation over two years ago, call volume has increased
by more than 300 percent. The CMP solution allows Qwest to perform a true cost
analysis on this massive network to monitor all traffic, providing Qwest a
significant advantage over its competitors. “We’ve never before
been able to calculate a true cost analysis,” commented Klotz.
The data derived from the CMP reports was the impetus
for several significant business decisions within the Qwest
organization. “The reports demonstrated very clearly
to us that we needed to change the way we were accruing
for cost. Another very significant change that was made
based on this information was our pricing model,” said
Klotz. After comparing our pricing with the actual costs
involved in processing transactions, we made several changes
to ensure our pricing was in line.”
The company also uses the data from the CMP reports to
audit bills from other service providers. The data allows
them to identify how much they should be billed per month.
Armed with that information, the company has created a
department whose primary responsibility is to compare the
CMP information with the bills they receive from other
service providers. The discrepancies can be significant,
and Qwest now has the information they need to dispute
these inaccurate bills. “Having this information
available makes the dispute process much more efficient
and arms us with the information we need to prove our case,” said
“The CMP data is critical when other vendors audit
Qwest as well. It provides us with good, verifiable data
so that we have proof of our records and can substantiate
any bills we send out,” noted Klotz.
The value of a reliable business
As part of the next phase, Qwest is requesting that CTGi add a feature to the
software to change the current accrual process and to transform some of the
data in their reports. “We rely on CTGi to make the necessary adjustments
for us so that we can focus on what we do best,” said Klotz.
“CTGi is always very responsive to our requests.
They have an extremely knowledgeable staff that is diligent
about keeping up with telecommunications trends. They are
often aware of new trends before we are,” commented
Klotz. “We rely on their expertise.”