About the company
Combining the UK's largest and most reliable mobile network with a broadband network offering the fastest widely-available broadband speeds, VMO2 employs more than 18,000 people, has 48.5 million UK connections and network coverage of more than 99% of the nation’s population.
Virgin Media O2 has been on a decade long mission of leveraging automation to improve operational efficiency and deliver better customer service. At present, they have a robust and reliable RPA program with more than 450 digital workers operating at varying capacites based on very non-predictive volume peaks and are on the trajectory of achieving scale to truly transform how work is done.
But a year ago, it was a different picture all together. The CoE was struggling to keep up with everyday challenges – like meeting SLA deadlines and triaging processes when a system crashed. Hamish Tonkin, Head of Automation, knew he needed a better way to schedule processes to operationalize RPA.
SLA-based orchestration guarantees robotic reliability
Virgin Media O2’s (VMO2’s) automation journey started when they were looking for ways to optimize front and back-office processes to help improve customer experience in their call centers. Beginning with a few straightforward process automations, they quickly discovered new value and gained confidence in the technology. More than 10 years into their automation journey, they had deployed a large digital workforce, but needed to reduce the total cost of ownership (TCO) to improve overall operating efficiency.
With so many robots, they struggled to oversee the entire digital workforce and knew significant value was being left on the table. Specifically, Hamish was searching for a better way to schedule processes. He wanted to optimize when and how processes ran without additional headcount.
C TWO's dynamic, SLA-based orchestration enabled VMO2’s CoE to turn their attention from monitoring and repairing, to working more closely with the business to optimize existing processes and identify new automation opportunities. “Our digital workers now run completely unassisted and operate at optimal capacity 24/7,” said Hamish.
Improved customer service through proactive asset management
Another benefit the VMO2 team realized was the ability to proactively manage assets and avoid future delays. Through dynamic orchestration, the C TWO platform identifies and creates a planned schedule to sweat assets. This ensures that digital workers and corresponding systems are aptly prepared to achieve SLA targets while also optimizing bot capacity. When talking about resource support requirements, Hamish said, “If we didn’t optimize and use the C TWO solution, we would be needing 600+ RPA licenses to do the same amount of work and achieve the same delivery.”
These improvements enabled VMO2 to assess their call center data in alignment with the digital worker SLA adherence. “How quickly and how well aligned the digital workers are to achieving an SLA is imperative to improving our NPV and customer experience. There is a direct correlation that is measurable.”
Providing greater visibility with a lens into the entire RPA estate
Hamish was also looking for a better way to visualize the automation value chain for leadership. His team had developed value models for process implementation to expand their digital workforce footprint and automate more. But, without measurable data they lacked trust from the business and weren’t agile enough to support growth.
C TWO's real-time insights and customizable dashboards enabled VMO2 to refine their value models and create more accurate value model predictions. Hamish and his team were more easily able to translate data, like the amount of capacity being released back to the business, into the meaningful financial metrics the business wants to evaluate.
Additionally, C TWO dashboards created a new level of transparency between the business and digital workers. Previously, the business was reliant on the CoE to understand how bots were performing and what was necessary to make improvements. “Now, they can see how the digital workers are performing on a day-to-day basis which leads to more discrete changes of behavior within the business. We help maintain the technical aspects, but the evolution of the digital workers sits within the business.”
Collaboration driving innovation
The difference between a vendor and a partner is displayed in the way value is delivered. In addition to helping VMO2 achieve operational excellence, Hamish was looking for a partner that would bring supreme technical experience and help him not only solve for his current problems, but also to think about the big picture and position his program for sustained success.
“In 30 years of tech, I’ve been involved in and sat on a lot of advisory boards. The level of maturity in C TWO is quite rich. It’s enlightening to see such transparency in the roadmap, and the strength of their feedback loop is unmatched," said Hamish.
C TWO's CEO, Erik Lein added, “C TWO was born out of necessity from practitioners experiencing some of automations most challenging frustrations. It is inherently in our DNA to collaborate with clients and deliver solutions that optimize their automation programs."
Optimizing for growth
“When we onboarded C TWO to tackle scheduling, I wasn’t expecting all these other capabilities and features to be there. And as nice of a surprise as it was – the platform truly solved other issues I was expecting to need a second and third vendor to overcome.”
Hamish and his team have an automation pipeline with more than 300 processes queued up for the next 6 months and more teams across the business are reaching out all the time. With the C TWO platform, Virgin Media O2 is positioned to scale its program rapidly while containing operational costs and firming the foundation to layer on advanced technologies.