Background and Setting
This long distance company manages multiple telecommunications switches that control its long-distance network. These switches each have their own proprietary language for service handling. There is a need to reconcile the company’s internal on-site Customer Service database of service products with remote switch databases while contending with multiple architecture’s and platforms. In general, when a service entry is made on CS database, i.e. a new phone number, an entry must be made in real time to multiple switches on the network and verification must come back of a successful service entry.
Client Business Objectives
- Create a uniform standard language for switch-handling of service entries independent of any proprietary switch while allowing full functionality. This language will be a bridge between the headquarters CS database and the telecommunications network.
- Create a real time transaction processing system with full automatic recovery to ensure service entries onto network. This system will run over both dial-up and private lines to remote switches.
- Remove the need for actual interaction with telco switches at the CS level, freeing up Customer Service for more customer interaction.
How did UIA Help?
A telecommunications switch-formatting language was developed using INFORMIX-4GL and a previously UIA developed rapid development system. This language handles all interactions with end-office switches on the telco network. A real time transaction system was developed on UNIX platforms using client-server and inter-process communications. Continuously running daemon programs monitor the local CS database for any new service entries and if found, activate services on the telecommunications network over dial-up and private lines. This distributed database transaction system was hooked in as a “back-end” to the existing CS interface, thereby reducing the need for manual interaction of telco switches.
How the Client Benefited
- Faster service-order entry processing from the CS agent onto the network with all switches having appropriate commands and instructions.
- Greater referential integrity between local CS database and remote switch databases, resulting in less “lost” numbers. Before this system, it was possible for numbers to be active on the network without the company knowing about them.
- Easier installation of new switch technology without having to re-train Customer Service since switch-independent language buffers any proprietary issues involved.
- Reduction of workload for Customer Service due to no longer needing to manually interact with each switch to verify service entries.