Google Workspace Results
Runs Australia and New Zealand operations with only 80 people
• Enabled the business to control its operating costs and deliver competitive products to the market
• Scaled to support growth to 1,000 employees supporting 300,000 customers
• Supported productivity and agility initiatives, such as the overnight development of business plans and pitches
Large, incumbent businesses have historically dominated the telecommunications industry in many countries. However, new technologies and changing consumer expectations are paving the way for a lean, agile breed of businesses to transform the sector. MyRepublic—a business established in Singapore in 2011 to take advantage of the government’s next-generation fibre broadband network deployment—is one of these businesses.
“We leveraged the Next Gen Nationwide Broadband Network project and started selling our services in 2012,” explains Eugene Yeo, Group Chief Information Officer at MyRepublic. The business offers broadband connectivity to homes and telecommunications solutions for companies. These solutions include an SD-WAN product for large enterprises.
Ambitious expansion plans
“Google Workspace enabled us to easily store and search for emails and files and delivered real-time collaboration by allowing multiple people to edit a document at one time.” Eugene Yeo, Group Chief Information Officer, MyRepublic
Restricting its presence to Singapore was never an option for MyRepublic. The business wanted to grow across the region and needed a model, framework, and platform that would help it realise these ambitions.
The business elected to avoid traditional, expensive telecommunications practices and systems to realise its ambition of executing plans to enter new markets in just two months. “For example, we decided to build our own Business Support System-Operating Support System (BSS-OSS)—the back-end system that runs product catalogues, order management, and customer management activities such as provisioning and orchestrating individual services,” Yeo says. “While initially we did this for budgetary reasons, we realised that owning the entire BSS-OSS stack provided a competitive advantage. We could be much more nimble and access different markets in the region at a much faster pace.”
The business also needed the flexibility to accommodate different go-to-market strategies for different countries. For example, in Australia, the go-to-market strategy is 100% digital, while in Singapore the approach is 70% digital and 30% through third-party resellers. Indonesia requires a very different strategy with a significant proportion of sales achieved through door-to-door approaches.
Google Workspace for productivity
“You need smooth video as well as voice — you need to see the other person’s reactions and expressions to communicate effectively. Google Meet delivered this capability.” Eugene Yeo, Group Chief Information Officer, MyRepublic
The agility and dynamism of Google Cloud was an ideal fit for MyRepublic and the business elected to deploy Google Workspace across its operations. “As a startup with 30 to 35 people, we wanted a productivity tool that everyone could use effectively,” Yeo says. “We settled on Google Workspace as a convenient and easy-to-use solution.”
However, by 2013, MyRepublic had grown to about 300 team members and—citing enterprise-grade security and employee access management requirements—moved to another set of productivity applications. Just three years later, the business moved back to Google Workspace. Yeo cites push and pull factors behind its decision. On the pull side, Google representatives briefed the MyRepublic technology team on advanced security and other enterprise-grade features added to Google Workspace, while on the push side the set of applications the business had moved to in 2013 did not have the productivity features equal to those in Google Workspace.
“Google Workspace enabled us to easily store and search for emails and files and delivered real-time collaboration by allowing multiple people to edit a document at one time,” Yeo says. “Furthermore, our team members were comfortable with and used to the Gmail interface.”
High-quality Google Meet
By the time MyRepublic completed the transition to Google Workspace, the business had grown to about 800 team members across 3 markets. Yeo cites the high quality of calls made using Google Meet as key to the success of the company’s expansion.
“Video and collaboration is extremely important to us as our senior leadership team has a lot of shared responsibilities,” Yeo explains. “For example, a marketing person in Australia could be working on projects in Singapore, Indonesia, and New Zealand. To make this work, you need smooth video as well as voice—you need to see the other person’s reactions and expressions to communicate highly effectively. Google Meet delivered this capability.”
Repository for corporate documents
“Google Workspace has helped us to create a collaborative, close-knit culture. We can interact deeply without having to fly constantly to different locations, which helps us work as a unified team rather than as disparate groups in silos.” Eugene Yeo, Group Chief Information Officer, MyRepublic
Google Drive is operating as a repository for all of MyRepublic’s corporate documents, with an add-on enabling the business to safely share sensitive material with investors and external partners. “We are able to see who is viewing the document and when, which is very important for our tracking and auditing obligations,” Yeo says.
Google Workspace now provides the enterprise-grade security required by MyRepublic, including the ability to monitor emails and identify messages that may contain unauthorised content. Furthermore, because Gmail flags potential malware or phishing emails, it minimises the risk of a breach of the telecommunications company’s security. “These functions are part of a whole landscape of Google security tools and I can see Google continuing to evolve them to deliver new features,” Yeo says.
The telecommunications company’s public relations team has started developing an intranet using Google Sites, and is working with third-party vendors to implement collaboration and community functions to complement the Google product’s functionality.
Google Workspace has played a vital role in enabling MyRepublic to operate as an agile, responsive telecommunications business with 1,000 employees supporting 300,000 customers. “Google Workspace has helped us to create a collaborative, close-knit culture,” Yeo says. “We can interact deeply without having to fly constantly to different locations, which helps us work as a unified team rather than as disparate groups in silos.”
“By embracing cloud and Google Workspace in particular, we gain a lot of agility. About every other month we receive new feature sets that are fed seamlessly to us.” Eugene Yeo, Group Chief Information Officer, MyRepublic
The business has also achieved considerable productivity improvements through Google Workspace. “Several times, we’ve been able to work together to develop a business plan or pitch overnight and have it ready the next morning,” Yeo says. “That would not be possible if only one person could work on a document at one time. This saved us a lot of time and created a more agile team mindset and culture at MyRepublic.”
A lean, fast-moving business
Furthermore, the deployment of Google Workspace has enabled MyRepublic to realise its ambition of being leaner and faster moving than larger businesses in its industry. “By embracing cloud and embracing Google Workspace in particular, we gain a lot of agility,” Yeo says. “About every other month we receive new feature-sets that are fed seamlessly to us. As an organisation we are leaner than our competitors—we run our entire operations in Australia with 50 people and in New Zealand with 30 people. This allows us to reduce our operating costs and deliver much more competitive packages to the market.”
A platform for key back-end systems
MyRepublic is now extending its use of Google Cloud services to Google Kubernetes Engine for business-critical back-end systems. “We’ve decided to make the move for our BSS-OSS stack and transition country by country, workload by workload,” Yeo says. “Google Kubernetes Engine allows us to scale up resources and nodes as and when required, which was a bit more challenging with our previous platform. We completed the move of our entire Australia BSS-OSS workload to Google Cloud Platform at the end of 2017.”
*Google Workspace was formerly known as G Suite prior to Oct. 6, 2020.