Purple Scout makes TELIA’S big data to hard facts

Daniel Dahlbom, Head of Business Transformation at Telia Infra

With AI as the fortune teller

Gut feeling has nothing to do with the matter when Telia Infra transforms big data into smart business choices. Now, it’s AI that matters. To manage data volumes beyond human control. And to find desired skills at Purple Scout.

 

– Using AI we have a clear picture of where the company is going and what challenges there are. Purple Scout has a full understanding of us as customers and our challenges, says Daniel Dahlbom, Head of Business Transformation at Telia Infra.

– A lot of people are talking about AI today, but only a few have developed applications that actually work. It’s exciting to be a part of a team that treads new ground, says Martin Andersson, SCRUM-master and Data Engineer at Purple Scout.

Digital junction 

Telia Infra has an important role in the digital society’s future. On behalf of Telia Sverige, fixed and mobile networks are delivered in one of the world’s most connected countries. At the same time, they are responsible for mapping and operating the old Televerket’s copper telephone network – a job that requires both a windscreen and a rear-view mirror. Huge amounts of data were collected each week, and that was a long time ago that Exel was enough.

Big data becomes hard facts

To create structure in the data sets, Telia Infra initiated a collaboration with Purple Scout. The project was named Kuben – basically, a data warehouse that, over the years, has grown in functionality. Kuben became an eye-opener that, in many ways, had changed focus on how to work. And the development costs have quickly been recollected.

– Using Kuben, we saw double billing, non-followed-up operation costs and incorrect contract terms caused by the data volumes that had simply been too heavy to handle. The concern Telia was able to save 200 million Swedish crowns in two years, says Daniel Dahlbom.

That Kuben as a system is 100 percent malleable to Telia Infra’s challenges is seen as a strength. Daniel Dahlbom thinks that the benefits are obvious compared to choosing a system from the shelf.

– Complete systems can be limited and expensive to develop further. With Kuben are we able to twist and turn however we want, and create new modules as the needs occur.

Development with data scientist

In Kuben, operation knowledge from Telia is combined with technical competence from Purple Scout. The aspiration from day one has been to deliver business benefits by automating manual work and developing a basis for strategic decisions in operative processes. Now they want to implement AI in selected areas. The team at Purple Scout is broadened with a data scientist – who has their roots in mathematics.

– The exchange of knowledge has been massive between us and Purple Scout. They have succeeded in strengthening the team with competence that is hard to find today, says Daniel Dahlbom.

– The trust we have received has made us move quickly and bring in the latest technologies in our field, says Martin Andersson and explains that you evaluate several frameworks before finally sticking to Apache Spark.

– Apache Spark is fast, fun to work with and delivers everything we need. Above all, it’s open-source!

True AI

– We create AI as AI should be, that is, without human blessing, says Daniel Dahlbom and explains that this means, amongst other things, that Kuben now can make predictive, strategic analyses. In principle, you can see the future.

– The AI algorithms we are developing mean that Kuben is trained to make their own, data-driven decisions. In practice, this means that, in addition to the fact that manual work can be automated, a relentless amount of data can be turned into smart business decisions, says Martin Andersson.

– AI has opened the door to efficiency, profit optimization and proactive sales. We have got a fortune teller, says Daniel Dahlbom.

Rent a colleague

He wants to summarize the collaboration with Purple Scout with two words – dynamic and smooth. It was a long time ago that the difference was made between us and those in the team. It has been an important mindset.

– We don’t rent consultants. We rent colleagues. At Purple Scout, we rent, for example, a colleague who is a data scientist!

He appreciated that Purple Scout has been able to accelerate and decelerate in the project – and further develop the team with a sense of rhythm. The collaboration had demanded full control on Python, Linux, Java, big data, machine learning and agile methods. But also the ability to quickly become acquainted with an advanced business model. There have been no problems.

The team at Purple Scout really masters all disciplines. If they had been athletes and competed in the Olympics, they would have taken a podium place in every sport!

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