Speaking with John Bretherick, Sales Director of UK for ADVA, at this year’s Project Rollout, KCOM’s CTO Tim Shaw explained the value of maximising efficiency using the latest technologies

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic one thing has become abundantly clear: quality connectivity is no longer optional. Demand is reaching higher levels than ever before, with locked-down customers working from home, consuming vast quantities of data.

“Covid has created an even bigger demand, a necessity, for stable broadband,” explained Shaw.

“Before the lockdown, it was all about how we get new products and new services to our customers. Now, post-Covid, it’s going to be a really interesting time – with the necessity of broadband, we’ve seen behaviours change.”

With this ever-growing demand a constant challenge, operators are under pressure to ensure that their networks operate as efficiently as possible. For KCOM, this meant building on their long-term partnership with ADVA to encompass some of the expert company’s latest technologies.

“We’re using the ADVA packet edge device to help transition from 10Gb to 100Gb, which is really driven by the boom in demand we’re seeing from our customers. The work that we’re doing with ADVA has enabled us to grow the network – we’re using the technology to aggregate the services and find the most efficient way to meet that demand,” said Shaw, noting that the solutions also met the crucial requirement of being quick and simple to deploy.

But success is not built on technology alone. Building a productive partnership with your suppliers is imperative to incorporating the latest technologies effectively, with an effective dialogue paramount not only before and during the sale, but also after purchase.

“What we’ve found with ADVA is that the support has continued if not gotten even better,” said Shaw. “That’s why we look at ADVA as more of a partner than a vendor. That transition is what we’re trying to do more of with all of our partners. We’re all in this together.”

For KCOM itself, further growth is planned for the coming year, focussing on key areas in which they already excel, such as rural and semi-urban areas. The UK is rolling out fibre at a rapid pace, but much of the country still lacks quality connectivity, meaning there is plenty of work still to be done.

“There’s plenty of opportunities,” said Shaw. “There’s a lot of the UK to catch up. When you look at our European rivals it’s clear that we have a long way to go.” 


The full discussion between John Bretherick and Tim Shaw is available to watch on demand on the Project Rollout platform

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