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Case study: Provide network automation, monitoring and analysis

The challenge

Three's network operations team had a business imperative to understand the status of its access network in near real time so as to assure service for its customers. An extensive specification of requirements included complex multi-vendor integrations, automation, data insights and context-sensitive presentation of information to enable improved processes and efficiencies across the network operations group.

The solution

VisiMetrix is Sonalake’s new approach to monitoring and analysis of network service performance, unifying data from disparate multi-vendor systems to enable customer impact assessment, early intervention and trending. VisiMetrix is used by Network Operators to gain real-time insight into the health of their network. The solution handles thousands of individual cells, links and nodes covering multi-vendor environments such as backhaul Transmission Networks, Fixed and Mobile Access Networks and Core Networks.

In Three’s case this translates to monitoring each individual cell site and network link constantly via multiple performance and network indicators which are all used to assemble and present a dynamic status of the network service.

In addition to technical analysis and design to deliver the integrations and configure VisiMetrix to Three’s requirements, Sonalake’s UX design team engaged Three in an analysis of the end user business and workflow needs. This allowed us to deliver a tailored range of wallboards and executive dashboards that enable the NOC to undertake its work in an efficient and collaborative way.

Our original journey with Three began in 2015 as we built a representation of the health of the Radio Access Network. In 2018 Three expanded the scope of the solution to include all Microwave Radio Transmission links which connected the base stations back to the core network. In 2022, VisiMetrix’s 24x7 monitoring continues to grow with the network, displaying sites that are down due to planned works and upgrades, flexibly adding new technologies such as 5G, and enriching services with new data layered on top of existing views.

The result

The result is best encapsulated by the following quotation:

“VisiMetrix provides Three Ireland with the intelligence to monitor and proactively respond to any service related issue within the network, often before these issues can impact customers. Its powerful alerting, network visualisations and dynamic thresholding abilities can highlight inter-dependencies and hotspots quickly, clearly and directly to network operations teams.”

John McGrane, Head of Access and Transmission Networks

A unique example of the benefits of VisiMetrix as used by Three can be read at the following link: Three’s Digital Transformation of an Atlantic Island.

Sonalake continues to build our relationship with Three and to more fully understand their business. We’ve witnessed how events such as the impact of Atlantic storms and the COVID-19 crisis can place extraordinary demands on operational activity, and we continue to adapt and evolve VisiMetrix in partnership so that Three can continue to provide transformational change and excellent customer impact. We are also collaborating with Three on our VisiMetrix Data Science modules with a view to providing deeper data insights and business automation within the operation.

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