Equant Integration Services chooses Australia

Global data network provider Equant has selected Australia as the location for a global support centre (GSC) for its Integration Services division.

The centre is part of a strategy to increase the Equant Integration Services brand in the Asia-Pacific region as well as grow the company, said Bill Padfield, vice president of Equant Integration Services, Asia Pacific.

"The [AP] marketplace here has been very buoyant. It's very receptive to services, its very receptive to outsourcing. This is an area we want to invest in heavily in the coming 24 months," he said.

Padfield said the establishment of the GSC in Australia to serve the Asia-Pacific region follows the recent launch of a GSC in London for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

According to Padfield, Australia was selected from a pool of countries in the region, largely based on the support offered by the Australian government.

"We did a review of a number of different countries and telecommunications costs, local labour skills, language skills, cost of premises and then overall operating model," Padfield said.

"We decided Australia offered us the best proposition."

While declining to reveal the Australian city which will host the GSC, Padfield said the centre is likely to be fully operational in the next six to 12 months.

Padfield said it will initially deliver 7 x 24 help desk and call handling in seven languages, in addition to enterprise management support and a Cisco-based technical assistance centre providing internetworking support.

Combined with Equant Integration Services' new management system, Atlas, the GSC will provide the organisation with a "very strong service proposition", Padfield said.

Atlas is a single service management system available across 50 countries. According to Padfield, the system, which went live in Australia in May, manages everything, from inventory to engineers, training and billing. It allows customers to access information in a global database via the Web site in real time.

Padfield said the system will be offered to customers as part of a standard maintenance and support package.

Rollout of the system across the globe is expected to be completed in July.

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