bluecue develops dashboards to analyze VIACTIV’s telephone system
VIACTIV is the largest company health insurance fund in North Rhine-Westphalia and the fourth largest nationwide. Their claim: Enabling 100 percent availability via telephone for their 780000 costumers. No easy pickings for the IT division. To meet the challenge and to analyze their quality in real time VIACTIV sought help from the bluecue consulting GmbH & Co. KG. The IT experts developed an analyzing tool for the telephone system on the basis of Splunk Enterprise – individually adaptable, flexible and easy to operate.
“In order to ensure our quality, we wanted to make our IT-system as transparent as possible”, explains Alwin Großekatthöfer, head of the IT division at VIACTIV. Around 1500 employees at roughly 70 company facilities use their Cisco telephone system to consult costumers and solve problems. But what is the call volume at different locations at which time? What happens if a facility is not reachable and a call has to be forwarded? What is the future call rate? Großekatthöfer wanted to find answers to questions like these in order to provide a perfect telephone service for costumers and to ensure ideal consulting performances by employees.
They heard about the BigData-solution Splunk, a tool which enables system administrators to gather and evaluate machine data. Even a telephone system can be analyzed in Splunk to gain transparency. Upon the recommendation of producer Splunk itself, VIACTIV sought help from bluecue in order to implement the solution. No sooner said than done. “After doing a feasibility study and creating a task list we quickly started the project together with bluecue”, explains Großekatthöfer.
Individually adapted, flexibly conceptualized
In close collaboration with the responsible employees at VIACTIV, bluecue’s technicians developed the so-called Call-Detail-Record (CDR) Dashboards which are used to evaluate the telephone system. These Splunk-based dashboards have been customized perfectly for VIACTIV’s needs. “This allows quick and easy monitoring, which enables a constructive cause analysis”, says Großekatthöfer.
VIACTIV can now use three different dashboards for their analysis. The Overview-Dashboard offers a companywide overview regarding the telephone system and shows for example how many employees are currently online – in real time. Individual calls can be traced by the Troubleshooting-Dashboard through time, phone number, call type, or Call-ID. The Performance-Dashboard was developed to analyze the line quality. Why? “We wanted to have an instrument for our quality assurance that – put simply – flashes a red light as soon as a call is rejected. Our claim is a 100 percent availability after all,” says Großekatthöfer. “Also, we wanted to be able to analyze cases we previously couldn’t explain.” Instead of painfully gathering and evaluating information, the VIACTIV team can now overlook the entire telecommunication in real time – using only one tool, at the touch of a button. Saving time and making the 100 percent claim more achievable.
“It is now possible for us to verify various phenomenon and make a detail analysis for different call-scenarios. In order to guarantee an intelligent call distribution we need to change our distribution logarithms sometimes. Now we can see quickly and easily whether this is actually necessary at a given time”, says Großekatthöfer.
From theory to practice
bluecue’s challenge was to develop dashboards based on the CDRs – the call information – that are easy to read. CDR-files contain information such as: Who called? Who did the caller talk to? To whom was the caller forwarded?
The problem: The information is purely technical and therefore not readable. “We wanted to depict the automated system information through our different dashboards”, says Großekatthöfer.
bluecue consultant Ralf Walkenhorst adds: “You need to keep in mind, that we have various data sources, including the call quality, the conversation itself or management functions. In order to obtain the relevant information from a call, all three sources have to be integrated into one dashboard.”
That is no longer a problem: Großekatthöfer and his team can now depict the formerly unstructured data in well-arranged tables and graphics. If deviations from the ideal case happen, it is now possible to localize and counterbalance them which provides Großekatthöfer with a decent basis for decision making.
“It pays off,” clarifies Großekatthöfer. Of course VIACTIV had to pre-invest into the tool development. However, the advantages quickly outbalanced the costs, because VIACTIV did not use an expensive ready-made all-round-solution but an instrument crafted by bluecue to specifically meet their needs. Apart from using the tool for quality assurance, Großekatthöfer can utilize it for human resource planning during ongoing operations as well.
Now he wants to implement further business segments into the monitoring process, because “the technology based on Splunk provides a very flexible illustration and is easy to introduce. That’s why we are thinking to expand the technology over all critical structures”, says Großekatthöfer. That could include areas such as mailing and the firewall. bluecue-expert Walkenhorst adds: “The expansion would provide a strategic view onto all systems.”
- Posted by bluecue consulting
- On 2015/12/21