The integrated data solution that saved Neos Networks £4m

Picture of Rebecca Halifax
Posted by Rebecca Halifax

Case Study

Neos Networks

Neos Networks is one of the UK’s leading business telecoms providers, offering high capacity fibre connectivity and collaboration solutions to UK businesses over a 34,000km wide business-only telecoms network.

The Challenge

To leverage client and financial data for more informed decision-making.

The Outcome

  • £4m worth of immediate savings

  • Reduction in customer payment delays

  • £1m in savings uncovered from late handovers from suppliers

  • Faster, more confident decision making

Manual processes, unreliable reports, slow decision-making: enough was enough for Neos Networks

The fast-growing nature of the business, combined with their vast quantities of client and financial data, meant that Neos Networks were quickly outgrowing their data infrastructure. Key operations data was spread across a number of systems, leading to some of their networks being siloed or orphaned from other critical networks.

This made it incredibly difficult for key decision-makers to access information and teams to respond to bottlenecks or process problems in real-time, impacting productivity and profitability across the organisation.

“We needed to join the dots and give key executives a 360-degree view of what was going on across all systems and business areas” 
Winston Balforth

Prior to working with Tech City Teams, the UK telecoms giant relied on Excel to manage this data. While they had their data to hand, this spreadsheet system impacted data functions across the business:

  • Data analysis and reporting processes were manual and laborious.

  • The time it took to manually locate and use the data put a strain on their teams’ time and resources.

  • Manual data handling increased the risk of human error, bringing the validity and reliability of their data into question.

  • A slow decison-making process.

Most notably, the use of outdated spreadsheets became a barrier to understanding complex data relationships - an essential function for receiving payments from their customers on time. Financial oversights due to this disconnect were causing lengthy payment delays and profit leakages.

Continuing with this process was financially unsustainable. They knew there was untapped value in their data, but it would require an agile, dynamic and innovative technology partner to bring this value to the fore.

A tailored, integrated solution

The solution needed to diagnose any and all fragmented data infrastructure and siloes in their operation. Neos Networks therefore required a major transformation and separation project as well as multi-systems reporting to become a more agile, data-driven business.

This new system needed to:

  • Offer near-real-time data.

  • House all their data in a single location.

  • Be accessible to different teams across the organisation with varying levels of access.

  • Automate data processes.

  • Combine multiple data sources.

  • Reveal critical business insights.

For Tech City Teams, the challenge was to build a completely new data system and infrastructure from the ground up. It was an ambitious undertaking, but a necessary one. Done right, the system would not only resolve Neos Networks’ data challenges, but deliver real value as a tool that supports the management and growth of the business.

Finding the right technology for the job

Neos Networks selected the AWS platform, specifically the QuickSight Analytics tool, for its ability to connect multiple underlying data sources and intuitive interface for creating and viewing data dashboards. It’s also a fully managed solution, so deployment was done within Neos Networks’ AWS estate with no need for ongoing maintenance.

Combining custom coding and AWS QuickSight, our objective was to simplify their entire data sourcing and analysis processes, uniting siloed data within a single system that could be visualised in a dashboard.

To effectively resource this project and ensure we had the right people on the job, we brought in additional team members with extensive experience in analytics and data engineering solutions.

Through an agile delivery approach, we fine-tuned the analytics and reporting by collaborating closely with Neos Networks throughout the project, including users at all levels, data owners, and decision-makers. The dashboards were therefore curated to the specific analytical and reporting needs of the business, which included splitting data by month and division. We also ensured the system refreshed regularly for the most up-to-date view of data and financials.

Once we had connected the data and delivered a comprehensive set of dashboards in Quicksight, teams began using the system as part of their daily routine to find significant savings.

0001__1646057238_109-153-216-185 (1) (1)-jpg (1)Example of the dashboard using simulated data

This transformed incredibly complex data views into a format that was much easier to interpret and fostered a newfound confidence in both the data and the system, empowering individuals across teams and divisions to make sound business decisions.

Neos Networks took control of their data

£4 million

in immediate savings

£1 million+

uncovered from late handovers

Our data-engineering-as-a-service model supported the successful delivery of Neos Networks’ new data system.

As well as providing the control they needed over their financial data, the dashboard resulted in £4 million of immediate savings from visibility of orphan circuits alone, in addition to the £1 million+ already uncovered from late handovers between Neos Networks and suppliers.

“TCT absolutely turned around our data experience.”
Sarah Herriman
Finance Director (Multi Systems Reporting), Neos Networks

Further benefits of the new system include:

Increased responsiveness and agility
The team is now able to spot trends or costly problems far sooner. From preventing business fires to capitalising on exciting growth trends, they’re able to see it all in the dashboard and take immediate action.

Making the most of the talent in their teams
With the need for manual number-crunching removed, teams have more time to work on activities that drive real value for the business.

Data they can rely on
The added benefits of automating manual data processing is increased productivity and the mitigation of human error altogether.

Quicker business decisions
With near-real-time data visualised at their fingertips, managers and key decision makers are empowered to make confident and more informed choices faster.

A unified data process
The QuickSight dashboard affords a single home for data analysis tasks, increasing accessibility and ease-of-use for individuals and teams across the organisation.

Ready to adapt
As Neos Networks and their teams familiarise themselves with the system features, they’ll be able to experiment with their own self-service analysis and continue to grow and enhance the system according to their needs.

What’s next for Tech City Teams & Neos Networks?

Neos Networks now has complete visibility of their entire chain of activity, from order and supplier interaction to client handover, allowing them to continuously streamline processes and save costs in the future.

Through the successful implementation of this new data system, we nurtured Neos Networks’ trust in our capability to deliver feats of innovation and game-changing solutions to problems that at first seem insurmountable.

Thanks to this trusted relationship, we continue to work closely with Neos Networks on their development roadmap.