Reseller News

Vodafone claims brown-out was expected

A customer relationship management (CRM) upgrade that caused Vodafone Group's pre-paid service to 'brown out' for more than a week was totally foreseen, says the company.

Starting May 17, the company commenced an upgrade of Oracle's Siebel system that handles its Australian pre-paid billing system.

The systems upgrade meant that for more than a week, Vodafone could not provision new products or services, such as: providing voicemail; moving customers to new propositions; change the rate plans; or churn customers to or from pre-paid phone accounts.

There was no impact to the telecom company's post-pay business.

"This was scheduled as a piece of work. It was not as though we thought it would take a day and it has taken longer. It was certainly a nine-day brown out period that was factored in," said Greg Spears, Vodafone's head of corporate communications.

The systems upgrade concluded on Saturday, May 27.

Spears said the company tried to be upfront with all its partners that were involved in registering new pre-paid customers during the brown-out.

Any customer request during that time were held in database and would not get fed into the system until the upgrade was moved live, he said.

Spears said the work is part of the final phase of a three-year upgrade to the company's new CRM system.