Stephan Kasulke is Senior Vice President Quality at T-Systems. In this interview, he talks about why failsafe ICT is becoming ever more crucial and how T-Systems is fulfilling this promise.
Stephan Kasulke, Senior Vice President Quality
Mr. Kasulke, the Zero Outage program at T-Systems aims to eliminate defects in the ICT sector. Hand on heart: is completely failsafe IT even possible?
There's no such thing as 100 percent security in IT – we have to be realistic about that. But we have to at least get close to a 100-percent reliable service. And we are doing it with Zero Outage
: our failsafe twin-core data centers guarantee 99.999 percent reliable operations. In addition, more than 20,000 quality-certified employees ensure seamless IT operations with customers.
Why do you think this subject is so important?
In the age of digitization, IT is everywhere, connecting everything with everything else. If the IT doesn't work, then nothing else does either. The importance of IT continues to increase and with it the need for the systems to run properly at all times. Today, connected IT systems are already controlling more and more essential machines and workflows. Intensive care wards and operating rooms, high-speed trains and aircraft are just a few examples of things that depend on zero-outage IT. This is all the more true in the Industry 4.0 context: the quality
of the IT is a decisive factor.
What are the potential consequences of ICT outages?
First and foremost, there is a direct risk to life and limb, such as with remote surgical operations. But there are also business risks, as well, where outages can cost millions. Market researchers at Gartner calculated that IT system outages cost companies an average of $5,600 – per minute. Last but not least, server failures harm a company's image: In 2015, Apple users were unable to make any purchases, start downloads or log in to their accounts for up to eleven hours. Your reputation really takes a hit from something like that.
According to a number of analysts, IT quality is currently the number one criterion for selecting a service provider – even more important than price. How do you ensure this quality level?
Zero Outage Conference
At the first Zero Outage Conference, 150 managers and experts from the worlds of business, politics and science met at Motorwerk Berlin to discuss the prevention of IT outages. Watch the retrospect here: Highlights, speeches, opinions.
The recipe for quality consists of three ingredients: personnel, processes and platforms. Our personnel are highly skilled employees who receive regular training and certification – with a standard culture of discipline and accuracy in all activities. Add to this simple, standardized processes that increase efficiency and ensure high-quality results at a low implementation risk. So we also offer standardized, high-performance, high-availability platforms with state-of-the-art technology.
The Zero Outage program has been going for five years now. How successful has it been and what is the feedback oft he customer like?
Our zero-defect strategy is working and its success is measurable based on our regular customer surveys: with a TRI*M-Index of 90, T-Systems is now being placed by customers in the top 10 percent of IT services providers in Europe with the most satisfied customers. In the meantime, the vast majority of our customers don't have any IT outages at all.