C&W Optus previews Web-based billing

Cable & Wireless Optus' Outsourcing Group yesterday previewed its Web-based telecommunications billing system for its outsourcing customers.

Designed by the division, in conjunction with key outsourcing customers including the Queensland Government, the system is being evaluated for other C&W Optus divisions and customers, officials said.

The Queensland Government has scheduled the solution, still in development phase, for trials in August and September this year.

According to Craig Price, business manager for C&W Optus' FM Outsourcing enterprise division, the company's total investment in the project will be about $3 million to $4.5 million.

Price said the billing system, whilst not new to the Australian market, is a new service to the telecommunications outsourcing market.

"Other companies provide Web-based billing systems," Price said, but although "unique" to the Outsourcing Group's environment, it is "not unique to the Australian environment".

The system allows organisations, through their Internet browsers, to view bills and expenditure from different suppliers, including Telstra, Vodafone and AAPT, Price said. No additional IT infrastructure is needed to run the Unix-based application, which offers users a secure connection via user login and passwords, he said.

Developed in conjunction with key customers, including the Queensland government, the system has the ability to store up to 15 months' worth of data in a data warehouse that is updated daily.

Users can "drill down" to greater levels of detail and can sort and view reports from different company sectors and divisions, Price said.