Transforming Partner Care at a Major Middle East Mobile Satellite Services Provider

Thuraya, the leading international mobile satellite services operator, provides cost-effective mobile satellite services in more than 140 countries in Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia, and Australia. Services provided by the company include broadband, maritime, and mobile voice which support dual GSM and satellite mode, rural telephony, fleet management, and other applications. Thuraya services are used by vertical market consumers such as from the oil and gas, mining, agriculture, NGOs and maritime services industries.


  • Resulted in 90 percent of cases being completed
  • Led to 80 percent of cases being resolved within two hours; 90 percent within five hours
  • Resulted in average call waiting time of under 20 seconds
  • Deployed the Service Cloud in only eight weeks
  • Created and tracked cases from every channel, automatically escalating critical issues
  • Integrated with Thuraya’s telephony and back office applications
  • Supported 24×7 self-care in any time zone, using customer portal
  • Led to significantly enhanced visibility into care process and complaint management
  • Resulted in accountability based on fact, not subjective issues
  • Enabled company to prioritize treatment of high value Tier One service partner cases
  • Distributed workload efficiently between customer care agents

These Benefits have been achieved through the implementation of:


Salesforce CRM covered every base. The cloud model makes it quick and easy to deploy and the deployment risk is considerably lower than the on-premise model.
Ahmad Al-JebAsim KhattakManager Sales & Customer Support | Thuraya

The company markets its mobile satellite services through a global network of service partners: independent intermediaries spanning all the continents and operating in multiple different languages, time zones, and cultures. To effectively service these partners, Thuraya requires a flexible and robust customer care system—one that services their needs according to location and language. The system also needs to draw together all the information associated with a technical enquiry, including product inventory, provisioning, billing, and finance.

According to Asim Khattak, Manager, Sales & Customer Support, Thuraya, the company needed to replace its existing on-premise customer relationship management (CRM) system used to manage customer care. “When a partner contacts Thuraya, we need to ensure they receive prompt, expert service. Our business strategy is based on delivering a satisfying and rewarding customer experience and satisfaction.”

Call center principal touchpoint for satellite handsets users

Thuraya was managing hundreds of partner service requests every day and the call center was the principal touchpoint for users of the company’s satellite handsets. The company recognized that a cloud-based CRM system offered the flexibility of fast and cost-effective deployment, ease of use, and low risk. “One of our service partners was using Salesforce CRM and that initial recommendation led to us talking to Cloud Concept, which is one of the region’s most experienced and skilled cloud computing consultancy businesses. Cloud Concept made a thorough examination of our business and technical needs, studied our call volumes, and explored the optimal process for trouble ticket management. Cloud Concept’s skills, knowledge, and experience were invaluable throughout the program and helped accelerate the time to value,” says Khattak.

Thuraya had the option of continuing to use the existing on-premise CRM platform, but the Salesforce CRM cloud-based model made a lasting impression on Khattak and his team. “Salesforce CRM covered every base. The cloud model makes it quick and easy to deploy, there’s a monthly fee instead of fixed capital costs, and the deployment risk is considerably lower than the on-premise model. Salesforce CRM itself also offers remarkable out of the box functionality—covering almost every customer care function we need with barely any customization.”

Working closely with Cloud Concept, Thuraya deployed the Service Cloud in only eight weeks—which according to Khattak was, “an efficient time frame for the implementation of this project.” The Service Cloud has been implemented to enable the customer care agents to create and track cases coming in from every channel, automatically route and escalate what’s important, and integrate with Thuraya’s telephony and back office applications. When a call arrives from a Service Provider, CTI integration screen-pops details of the partner on the relevant agent’s screen, prior to the call beginning. The agent uses the comprehensive, single view of the partner’s situation to help resolve the enquiry—irrespective of whether it is a simple billing enquiry, a request to de-active a SIM card on a phone, or a more complex provisioning issue. The center currently supports five languages.

Equally, when an email arrives, the partner is sent an automated notification of receipt, including dynamic case number assignment. The customer portal is another vital ingredient of this highly successful customer care strategy, helping Thuraya to deliver 24×7 self-care in any time zone. Partners can get case updates and search the knowledge base, all without picking up the phone. The portal is particularly valuable for resolving questions associated with the use of the satellite handsets and for helping partners track the progress of repairs to handsets.

Reduced the cost of customer care

The Service Cloud has helped Thuraya transform the quality of its customer care and simultaneously reduce the cost servicing partners. The company has significantly better visibility into the care process and complaint management. Internal follow-up and accountability is now based on fact, not subjective issues; and the team can perform rich, drill-down daily or weekly management reporting (such as performance measurement and the tracking of response times and ticket closure). Moreover, Thuraya can accurately follow the status of every case as it is cascaded between several back-office teams; the company can prioritize the treatment of high value Tier One service partner cases; and there is the flexibility to efficiently distribute workload between the members of the customer care team.

Some 90 percent of cases are completed (given that many of the cases are of an extremely complex nature, this is a significant progression), 80 percent are resolved within two hours, and 90 percent within five hours. Average call waiting time is below 20 seconds.

Khattak comments, “This is a great endorsement from our partner network; who have very demanding expectations of customer care. The Service Cloud represents the future of customer service, allowing Thuraya to take customer care to a new height, resolve partner issues consistently more quickly, and increase partner loyalty.”

Mohamed Amjad Al Asadi, director of Customer Intelligence & Support, Thuraya comments, “Quality is crucial to customer care and Salesforce CRM enabled me to ensure Thuraya delivers the highest quality standards.”

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