Tata Infotech
Tata Infotech
Portal Solutions

Case Study

Case Study 1 - A leading Physicians Portal improves service levels, time-to-market and cost efficiencies through Tata Infotech offerings

Case Study 2 - World's leading provider of online encyclopedia drastically improves its enhancement to maintenance budget allocation ratio using Tata Infotech Services.

Case Study 1

A leading Physicians Portal improves service levels, time-to-market and cost efficiencies through Tata Infotech offerings

A large research driven pharmaceutical company with operations worldwide had launched a co-branded portal for physicians along with a leading company in the consumer portal business. The portal reaches over 250,000 physicians in 25 countries in Europe , Middle East and Africa. The portal is a rapidly growing, on-line community where physicians can find focused medical content and web enabled resources to keep them up to date on current medical issues and better treat their patients.

The Challenge

As the portal grew in terms of number of users and the number of countries it was being rolled out into, challenges started surfacing in terms of deteriorating service levels and mounting maintenance costs. The portals which were outsourced to a small Systems Integrator based in the UK was also confronted with a challenge of not being able to roll out new quality features due to lack of capacity.

Scouting for a reliable partner

In January 2002, faced with this situation, the pharmaceutical company started its lookout for a dependable Systems Integration partner who would not only reduce costs but also improve service levels, portal availability and the time-to-market for new features to be rolled out. After having evaluated a number of options, in April 2002 the Pharmaceutical Company chose Tata Infotech as its technology partner for its Physicians Portal program. While there were other companies that promised generic offshore based development and maintenance capabilities, Tata Infotech was the only company with a strong multi-faceted portal support and development offering with a proven transition methodology.

The differentiators

The key differentiator that Tata Infotech brought into the engagement at the very beginning is the ability to transition to a distributed onsite-offshore based engagement without the users even realizing it. Transitions generally are the toughest part in an engagement like this and Tata Infotech was able to transition all the services under its umbrella in a not-so-conducive an environment in a record time of 3 weeks against a planned time of 3 months. Using its proprietary methodology, Tata Infotech not only managed to transition the support effectively but also swiftly moved onto steady-state and started optimizing its operations within 3 months of take-over.

The optimizations resulted in drastically improved service levels, portal availability and time-to-market for new features and enhancements.

The relationship today

Tata Infotech has been successfully supporting the portal program since April 2002 and has been providing the following services:

  • SLA based 24 X 7 Application support for 25 portals catering to 25 countries in EMEA
  • 2nd Line Help Desk support - 24 X 7 support for severity 1 issues
  • Hardware and Operating systems support
  • Third party SLA and contract management
  • Backup and disaster recovery planning and implementation
  • Development, hosting and support of a critical email newsletter system.
  • 70+ projects and enhancements executed including a major project on portal upgrade and one major exercise in Portal re-branding.

The bulk of the engagement is carried out at Tata Infotech's offshore facilities in Bangalore, India while a core onsite team is present in London close to the infrastructure hosting the portals.

The benefits

The pharmaceutical company has derived numerous benefits from the engagement with Tata Infotech

  • Improved and streamlined processes
  • Improved service levels
  • Cost efficiencies to the tune of 50%. In addition due to improved processes and continued improvements the costs for feature development is continuously being optimized.
  • Uninterrupted transition of services into a distributed onsite-offshore engagement.
  • Quantum increase in capacity enabling rapid rollout of new features and reliable support and response at business critical junctures.
  • Mature program management and quality management.


Case Study 2

World's leading provider of online encyclopedia drastically improves its enhancement to maintenance budget allocation ratio using Tata Infotech Services.

World Book, a leading publisher of encyclopedia wanted to take advantage of the internet to increase its audience base and expand its reach. World Book leveraged its intellectual assets to launch World Book Online; a subscription based online service intended primarily for schools and libraries.

World Book Online features thousands of articles, maps and pictures from the World Book Encyclopedia plus content from an extensive archive of annuals and articles dating back to the early 1900s. World Book Online serves as a single point of access to a complete range of facts, figures and statistics and a comprehensive research assistant to its audience worldwide.

Fewer enhancements more budget spending

World Book Online was initially formed out of a joint venture between World Book and IBM, where IBM provided the technology and World Book owned the encyclopedia content. World Book found themselves in a situation where most of their budget was spent on maintaining the portal with minimal enhancements, making their site highly static.

World Book felt an acute need to reverse this situation. For the same budget spending they wished to have more feature enhancements with lesser amounts being spent on maintaining the portal. They were looking for offshore strategic partners who would give them better value for their budgeted dollar while providing 24x7 support.

Transition and the value-adds

Tata Infotech deployed its proprietary methodology to transition the support of World Book Online from their existing services provider over a period of three months.

The process maturity of the methodology ensured that the transition was smooth in spite of the aggressive timelines. Maintenance and enhancements to the portal are done using the distributed onsite-offshore approach.

This approach enabled us to provide World Book with a 24X7 support. Within a few months of taking over, we were able to reduce World Book's monthly maintenance costs by over 50%.

Subsequent to the transition, Tata Infotech has helped World Book with many of their key initiatives some of them being

  • Engineering seamless Integration with AOL subsequent to Worldbooks' tie-up with AOL in mid-2001
  • Performance and Load testing engagements
  • Major redesign of the site
  • Migration from IBM RS 6000 SP 12 environment to a Solaris based environment
  • Number of enhancements executed and rolled out on a monthly basis.

Michael Ross, VP - Electronic Products, World Book says of Tata Infotech's team:

"We are pleased with your team's work, their commitment and professionalism, attention to quality and your accomplishment in such a short period of time - this is no small feat!"