How Swisscom fueled business innovation in the cloud
Swisscom is a leading telecoms and IT provider offering cloud, internet, TV and mobile services to residential and multinational business customers across Switzerland and Italy. The company is renowned as a partner to its multinational customers and has strengthened this relationship by enhancing its existing cloud service offerings.
As a provider of telecoms and IT services for both the Swiss and international market, Swisscom needed to strengthen and diversify its cloud service offering to continue providing both its residential and business customers with innovative and reliable services.
“Our current business is important to us and to Switzerland, but the next generation of enablement is not only in the network anymore—it’s in the cloud,” says Marco Hochstrasser, head of cloud platform development at Swisscom. “That’s why we want to enable our customers to use our cloud in Switzerland, safe in the knowledge that it is secure and close to where they are.”
The company was an early mover to the cloud, quick to recognise its future importance to consumers and enterprises. Due to the lack of mature products for cloud management in the market at that time, Swisscom decided to invest in building its own cloud management platform in a first phase. Swisscom’s internal, residential, and enterprise services were underpinned by this cloud platform which included the VMware NSX and VMware vSphere platforms.
Because of the rapid evolution of more mature and flexible cloud management tools over the following couple of years, Swisscom decided to enter the next phase and explore commercially available cloud management orchestration solutions.
“The market developed faster than we’d expected and it no longer made sense for us to keep the software development in-house for the cloud management platform”, said Hochstrasser.
Swisscom switched its strategy to focus on developing services for its customers enabled by the cloud platform, rather than on building the cloud management platform itself. The company worked with VMware to create its Enterprise Service Cloud, which leverages VMware vRealize Suite to automate and simplify the performance, troubleshooting, and capacity management of the cloud infrastructure.
“From an internal perspective, we’ve benefited from a standardised platform, simplified processes, and improved automation. It makes management of the cloud more efficient,” Hochstrasser says.
The Enterprise Service Cloud is now a critical part of Swisscom services. The company can offer its customers the opportunity to benefit from the cloud in a secure, efficient, and reliable way. The agile platform is also fueling innovation, enabling Swisscom and its enterprise customers to bring new types of services and features to market more quickly.
Hochstrasser explains the benefits to customers: “IT departments benefit from a new level of agility. IT can enable the organisation to disrupt with new business models, and to take advantage of the next wave of technologies such as Internet of Things or artificial intelligence, without jeopardising the regulation and compliancy requirements they might have in various regions. This improves competitiveness and help them to differentiate through services that open new revenue opportunities.”
Swisscom is putting innovation at the heart of its strategy for the future, with trials and services surrounding the Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and smart lifestyles. The Enterprise Service Cloud, as an agile platform, will help the company and its customers fuel innovation by enabling a secure and efficient move to the cloud. It will also help accelerate the speed at which Swisscom can introduce new services and features, helping the company scale up as the business grows.
“We’re all about getting customers connected with the best services possible,” Hochstrasser concludes. “With the new cloud service, we’re helping Switzerland and our international customers to innovate.”