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Old 02-07-2004, 09:42   #1
Jonathan David
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Harmony

When does Project Harmony finally kick in? The reason why i ask is that i've been receiving two bills since starting with NTL
One for broadband and one for television. Recently i had to use my phone line to send a fax. Now imagine my surprise when i received another bill for the grand total of 7p!
So when will Harmony finally kick in so that i can receive just one bill which will take into account all products that i have with NTL?
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Old 02-07-2004, 10:03   #2
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Re: Harmony

I wouldn't hold your breath-I have been told (by an ntl associate) that it is nowhere near what it's cracked up to be, & basically amounts to a complete waste of time & money by ntl.
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Old 02-07-2004, 10:13   #3
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Re: Harmony

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Originally Posted by Neil
I wouldn't hold your breath-I have been told (by an ntl associate) that it is nowhere near what it's cracked up to be, & basically amounts to a complete waste of time & money by ntl.
Not so Neil.

It's definitely happening, and the final regions to get it will be the former Cable & Wireless regions. That's scheduled for October this year, though it is likely to be a bit later than that. I should know, because when that happens I get made redundant.

It is actually a pretty reasonable system, if you'd used some of the archaic crap it is replacing in some regions you would realise how much better it actually is.

It already runs both the supply and billing of Cable Modems (SACMs) in former Cable and Wireless regions.

It *will* happen. Too much is at stake now for it not to.
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Old 02-07-2004, 10:15   #4
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Re: Harmony

Yup. All products are now supplied and billed through the Harmony system in the South Central and Cambridge franchises.
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Old 02-07-2004, 11:35   #5
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Re: Harmony

Yes, in Cambridge we have just moved to Harmony billing.

However, I am still billed separately for TV+phone line rental, phone calls and internet access! All that has changed is the layout of the bills, my customer numbers and who the Direct Debit is payed to (NTL Triangle instead of NTL Cambridge).
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Old 02-07-2004, 13:09   #6
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Re: Harmony

Same here as bob,
Got a new style of bill, have had for a few months, but still getting two bills, one phone, one internet.
According to ntl I'm in the South Central region.
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Old 02-07-2004, 13:16   #7
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Re: Harmony

There are now only two ntl regions...South Central & London North.
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Old 02-07-2004, 13:17   #8
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob_builder
Yes, in Cambridge we have just moved to Harmony billing.

However, I am still billed separately for TV+phone line rental, phone calls and internet access! All that has changed is the layout of the bills, my customer numbers and who the Direct Debit is payed to (NTL Triangle instead of NTL Cambridge).
So what good has Harmony done for this customer then?
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Old 02-07-2004, 13:23   #9
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil
So what good has Harmony done for this customer then?
It's provided a more stable, more robust billing solution. It's also meant that, once it's implemented nationwide, there'll be no more 'sorry I can't see your account as you are through to the wrong region'.

It will also mean an end to all the nonsensical 'I can only help you if you are ex-Cable & Wireless' stuff that I have to keep posting on here. Although I'll have left the company by then anyway, but it will help others.

I am also unsure that the 'three bill' thing is permanent. I understand that at some stage in the rollout, these bills will become single, it's all to do with databases and the like. I am not certain on the plans for that.

It's an intensely complex operation, moving from about 14 different billing systems to just one.
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Old 02-07-2004, 13:27   #10
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Re: Harmony

Well I'm not looking forward to Harmony simply because I've been put off by Sabs, it's so unstable
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Old 02-07-2004, 14:12   #11
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark B
It's provided a more stable, more robust billing solution.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Debsy42
Well I'm not looking forward to Harmony simply because I've been put off by Sabs, it's so unstable

You been reading the PR blurb Mark?
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Old 02-07-2004, 14:14   #12
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Debsy42
Well I'm not looking forward to Harmony simply because I've been put off by Sabs, it's so unstable
I'm not looking forward to harmony because I lose my job.

However, ICMS was unstable when Cable & Wireless first introduced it to all the former companies they had bought, in its early days it was up and down like a yoyo, now it's as robust as they come.

SABS will end up that way too. Each new upgrade causes issues, which then gradually get fixed. I've dealt with quite a few people on the Harmony development team and I know personally how focused they are on making it stable.

There'll be frustrating times ahead no doubt, no one gets more frustrated than me as my colleagues would happily confirm before walking off to punch me in the head, but I *am* confident it'll end up nice and stable.
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Old 02-07-2004, 14:17   #13
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by dellwear
You been reading the PR blurb Mark?
No...see my other post. I have dealings with the Harmony team and I'm also a 'superuser'. I know quite a lot about the front end of SABS and what it does and doesn't do, or should and shouldn't do.

It sure seems painful at the moment, and it makes you want to throw computers around at times, but it will get there and it will be stable and reliable.

The most recent upgrade seemed to be particularly troublesome but it is stabilising now and has been much better the last week or so.

You would have to see some of the archaic legacy billing systems to realise how much better it will be. My own region uses ICMS, which I quite like, but even that is about as user friendly as DOS. In fact, less so!
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Old 02-07-2004, 14:17   #14
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark B
It's provided a more stable, more robust billing solution. It's also meant that, once it's implemented nationwide, there'll be no more 'sorry I can't see your account as you are through to the wrong region'.

It will also mean an end to all the nonsensical 'I can only help you if you are ex-Cable & Wireless' stuff that I have to keep posting on here. Although I'll have left the company by then anyway, but it will help others.

I am also unsure that the 'three bill' thing is permanent. I understand that at some stage in the rollout, these bills will become single, it's all to do with databases and the like. I am not certain on the plans for that.

It's an intensely complex operation, moving from about 14 different billing systems to just one.
That's all well & good Mark (& genuinely no offence meant here), but in true ntl style, you haven't actually answered my question!

What I want to know is how the customer I referred to earlier is better off under the great Harmony when he is still getting 2 x bills each month?
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Old 02-07-2004, 14:21   #15
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Re: Harmony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil
That's all well & good Mark (& genuinely no offence meant here), but in true ntl style, you haven't actually answered my question!

What I want to know is how the customer I referred to earlier is better off under the great Harmony when he is still getting 2 x bills each month?
Fair point that...and I did mention earlier that I understood the 'seperate bills' thing is not a permanent situation. I hope not anyway.

I heard mentioned some time ago that initially Harmony simply provides an alternative 'common' interface into the existing different databases, which would explain the seperate bills. I am led to believe that part of the project involves all these databases eventually moving into a single one. However, that info was some time ago and I don't know how reliable it is. I will try to find out next week if I can!

It would certainly not impress some of the ex-Cable and Wireless customers who currently get one bill for all three services, to suddenly have three!
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