It was back in 2001 that the NES (RVA/ONEM) began the process of developing its telecommunications network through Eurofiber, which was still called B-Telecom at the time. It extended that collaboration for a further 3 years in 2006. And the contract has been renewed again until 2018. The reason for this continuity is simple: the fiber optic network that Eurofiber installed for the NES to exchange large volumes of data with local NES branches has not only been fit for purpose, but has actually exceeded all expectations. It’s a situation that has also benefited people looking for work.
The National Employment Service is a federal government department responsible for organising unemployment benefits, as well as providing the systems used for career breaks and time credit. The number of ‘clients’ handled by the NES is certainly impressive, because it manages no fewer than 4 million records. Besides, some 1.1 million payments are made each month as unemployment benefits. Until 2001, all of these records were kept in paper form as part of a gigantic physical archive. Fortunately, the NES’s DIGITAR project changed all that paper, with every record and detail scanned and digitised.
Eurofiber connected the 30 NES branches and the central administrative office with fiber optic cables. “At the end of 2001 we replaced our terminals with PCs. We tasked Eurofiber with finding a solution capable of handling the enormous increase in our transmission volume, both for that time and into the future,” says IT Manager André Dehon.
“In 2001 Eurofiber made us a very attractive proposal. We were unable to find the rate and scalability of the telecoms services provided by Eurofiber’s fiber optic-based system anywhere else. In 2006 we switched to our current network. It was more than a contract extension. We wanted better capacity and greater backup facilities. So, in addition to gaining more capacity, we also wanted more security and the ability to improve our throughput at any time. And thanks to developments in the telecoms market, we were able to do all that while still pushing our costs down!” The Eurofiber solution was more powerful and less expensive, while being more stable at the same time: by splitting the network (2 x 2 Mbps), the NES ran a lower risk of a breakdown.
“At the beginning of October 2009, we decided to continue working with Eurofiber, because they were the most successful in keeping up with developments to our needs. But also because we had always worked with them in a smooth, problem-free way,” says Mr Dehon. In the future, the NES will continue to need more capacity and reliability. At the moment, there are all sorts of new telecoms applications in the pipeline, including VoIP solutions, which require a great deal of bandwidth. By extending its contract with Eurofiber until 2018, the NES is opting for security.
André Dehon, IT Manager NES
“In the 15 years we have been using the Eurofiber network we have never had a problem.”