Automated usage metering &
billing within CGI’s Data Center
- Granular reports into consumption on a per-customer basis
- Automated IT billing
- Faster insights into usage and a faster billing process
- Alignment between the customer contract value and the actual spend
- Changes in resource allocation are reflected in Billing within hours, versus at the end of the month or via manual corrections
- Changes are reflected in customer billing more quickly
- Clear, and more detailed views of current consumption are available on a per-customer basis via the Exivity Web Interface
- Cost Savings: fewer FTEs involved with billing through fully automating an otherwise manual process
- Ability to compare customer contract value with actual spend
- Fewer errors in billing workflows resulting in minimal administrative overhead
Founded in 1976, CGI is among the largest IT and business consulting services firms in the world. With over 400 locations worldwide, they operate in industries like Telecommunications, health, manufacturing, oil and gas, retail and consumer services, transportation, systems integration and IT managed services, and intellectual property(IP) solutions.
Challenges and solutions
The challenges for CGI revolved around two main topics; data unavailability and the lack of automation. Originally, services were charged monthly, with a summary available only at the end of the month bill. The billing data was collected manually, which represented a significant effort for the individuals assigned to collect raw usage and then additional staff to compile it to produce billing. Exivity automates all these processes. It has a powerful data collection capability where Exivity either pulls or accepts billing data from US GTO’s systems that manage service delivery such as the Configuration Management DB (CMDB), hypervisors, Storage management, Backup, and Networking. Via Transform, this data is correlated with service profiles and customer identifiers to compile usage records. Usage data is then further processed with rate cards to populate the charge database that users can access as needed via Exivity’s Web interface.
Where usage data used to be compiled once a month and was only current as of the last tower report, GTO now has a system where staff can view usage via their browser where the data is current as of that morning. If a VM is created today, it will be reflected in Exivity no later than the following morning.
To their pleasure, Delivery Tower staff no longer have to create monthly reports. Instead, they can look into Exivity to view data needed such as trending for a given Delivery Tower. Further usage data is extracted and passed to our financial system to update accounts on our ERP.
Another benefit is US GTO uses Exivity to track its own resource usage. There are real costs associated with the IT resources they use to support service delivery. Having detailed visibility into those costs and related drivers allows US GTO to better manage those costs. Savings here drop directly to the bottom line.