How Experience Helps in Reducing Time to Value in Fibre Network Projects

Network design projects can be complex and time-consuming, making it difficult for in-house teams to complete them in a timely manner. Outsourcing can help to improve time to value by allowing companies to access the resources and expertise of experienced network designers. However, within what is still a burgeoning industry it can be difficult to find design teams with extensive experience in designing, planning and rolling out fibre networks.

In recent years NetPMD has worked on several high-profile fibre network design projects in the United States. The learnings from these extensive projects have been invaluable and they are now helping companies in the EMEA to benefit from their experience.

NetPMD’s projects within the United States have been across entire cities and regions.

“Each project has taught us something new about the process of designing fibre optic networks. We’ve also had the chance to work with a variety of third-party suppliers, construction companies and ISPs, which has given us a better understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of different software solutions.”

Patrik Lowenborg, VP of Network Design

He continues “We have used a variety of different software tool out there in the market in order to solve different design opportunities. Fully automated Software isn’t the final answer, as problems exist across the industry as a whole with data quality and accuracy. Therefore the need for human interaction and design experience to interpret how best to use these tools, is key. We’ve also found that the planning stage is probably the most underrated activity in the project lifecycle. Following many successful projects, this experience and learning has enabled us to apply how to best use these tools to deliver the outcomes we need for quality work, thus saving time, increasing output and adding more value to our clients”.

For example, when working on the City of Pittsburg fibre network design, the challenging geography threw up several challenges to the project. These included multiple risks from natural hazards including earthquakes, landslides, wildfires and floods.

Similarly, when working on Simi Valley in California, the team needed to consider that the network would be rolled out within a valley between two hilly and mountainous areas of brush covered wildlands with similar natural hazards including wildfires, earthquakes, and floods.

Simi Valley, California

NetPMD have created a culture where staff are empowered to be curious and bring new ideas to the design table. Through testing various ways of working and “breaking” a few eggs over the years on their US based projects they have  honed their fibre design and implementation service into a a tried  and tested modular approach.

Undertaking more and more projects in the UK, the NetPMD team, after experimenting with all the technology across the industry, they are now making their partnerships with software programs such as Comsof, IQGeo and Digpro to be more inclusive as part of a lifecycle of services.

Patrik continues, “Our US experiences have taught us a lot about the fibre optic design process. We know what to look for and what to avoid, and we can offer our clients a much higher level of service as a result. Most of these problems and indeed solutions are a global and so learnings can be applied to any given market across the world”.

By outsourcing some or all of their network design projects and activities, companies can benefit from the experience and knowledge of external providers whilst also freeing up internal resources. But the key is engaging with those who have extensive case studies to back up their claims.