Industry Trials

Industry Trials build on Integration Testing by using real customer data and real switches, to enable users to gain further assurance that the OTS process will work (minimising potential consumer dissatisfaction) at OTS go-live.

Purpose of Industry Trials

Industry Trials are conducted on behalf of the entire industry. If you are unable to participate, rest assured that you won't be disadvantaged. We will share trial results and lessons learned on a weekly basis, here

Industry Trials have three phases. The initial phases, with a low degree of customer sensitivity, aim to identify any significant issues with the process and technology. The later stage involves a ramp-up in volume of switches in preparation for OTS go-live.

The industry trials approach was formulated through discussions with industry over the past year, incorporating insights from various industry test groups. It takes into account feedback received see Bulletin 42, a proposal for industry trials, and the feedback requested in December.

Entry criteria to participate industry trials

If you are a trial participant, you have a choice of the stage you decide to enter trials.

The entry criteria to take part in trials is as follows:

  • Completion of simulator and integration testing, signed off by two CPs involved.
  • Signed User Agreement.
  • Successful connection with your chosen security protocol as proven in integration testing.
  • Agreement to respect the trials rules.

Three stage approach

The three stages of the industry trials are:

1. Technical Trials

Purpose: Validating the live production environment and the end-to-end OTS process.

Type of switch: non-primary lines only. No residential customer will be impacted by the technical trial.

Entry criteria:

  • Successfully passed all trials entry criteria (see above).
  • Approval to proceed from the TOTSCo Trials Team.

Trial stage duration:
March and May.

Volume of switches: up to 30 per Communication Provider (CP).

2. Staff Trials

Purpose: Trial a limited number of primary lines to prove the end-to-end OTS process utilising varied scenarios in a controlled manner to minimise potential consumer harm. This stage will commence following successful completion of technical trials. Staff trials will be pre-planned with TOTSCo with agreed test scenarios.

Type of switch: primary lines on pre-selected volunteer employees or friends and family.

Entry criteria:

  • Successfully passed all trials entry criteria.
  • Identify volunteers who are prepared to switch between trial participating organisations.
  • Approval to proceed from the TOTSCo Trials Team.

Trial stage duration:
May and June.

Volume of switches: between 30-50 gaining provider switches per CP and 30-50 losing provider switches per CP.

3. Industry Ramp-up

Purpose: Gradually increased volume of switches and scenarios to continue to validate the process and technology.

Type of switch: primary lines with no pre-selection.

Entry criteria:

  • Successfully passed all trials entry criteria.
  • Commitment to participate with the understanding that the ramp-up stage is a permanent stage until the One Touch Switch go-live.
  • Honouring of 100% of losing journeys to other participants in the trial.
  • Adjusting trial volumes to align with the planned gaining provider journeys.

Trial stage duration:
July and August.

Volume of switches: a significant number of trials messages.

Rules of Industry Trials

Trial participants play a crucial role in validating the OTS process on behalf of the entire industry and are required to:

  • Use live residential switches only.
  • Utilise the industry trial scenarios created by the Trials Team in-line with trial volumes.
  • Compliance with the OTS Industry Process.
  • Agree for your organisation to be published in the list of trial participants to provide transparency to industry and confidence in the process.
  • During the technical and staff stages, participants will use pre-planned switches only.
  • Be defect-free to ensure smooth trial operations. Any interruptions, such as system defects, may result in suspension from the trials.
  • Provide a dedicated named contact with the right skills and responsiveness to handle trials for the whole duration.
  • Agree not to use the ‘cancel other’ for trial switches.
  • Agree to work with the trials team in collaboration for the benefit of the whole industry.
  • Share your trial results and findings to all of industry, these will be shared in an anonymised form.
  • Provide weekly reporting of your trial status, progress, and defect status.
  • Attend daily trial defect triage meetings where required by the trial team.
  • Identify and resolve OTS defects within your systems and report out to the trial team as required.

Sharing results of trials

We share industry trial results on a weekly basis here

How to apply to take part

If you have read through the trials plan and feel you are positioned to take part in industry trials please contact us at [email protected].

Path to go-live for non-participants

For those of you who will not be participating in industry trials here are your steps to achieve OTS go-live:

  • Complete testing – simulator and integrations testing need to be completed by everyone who will be using the TOTSCo hub. More information on testing can be found on our ‘testing' page' and in the hub user guide. If you are using or thinking of using a Managed Access Provider (MAP), testing will be conducted with your MAP. See our ‘Managed Access‘ page for more information. 
  • Follow the progress of industry trials to incorporate any lessons learned into your processes.
  • Production implementation testing – approx 6 weeks before OTS go-live, we will be inviting all non-participants to take part in production implementation testing to validate your connection and perform basic messaging in readiness for go-live. More information on this stage to come soon.

Help and Support

Our website is full of support materials available to help you through your journey with us from onboarding, signing your user agreement to testing your systems and processes.

Our hub user guide is a valuable resource, offering detailed information that complements and adds more detail to the content available on our website.

Contact us, if you would like help getting started on your OTS journey or you have any questions as you progress. Please do not hesitate to contact our service desk.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q - How will I know who is participating in industry trials?

A – We publish the names of trial participants in our weekly updates here.  

A – We do not anticipate many organisations will take part in trials as it calls for a significant commitment of time and resource. Therefore, to ensure you are not disadvantaged we will be sharing results and lessons learned on a weekly basis with the whole industry. All non-participants should use the integration environment to test your systems and processes and we will provide you with an opportunity to join the live in good time for OTS go-live.

A – The Trials Team comprises members of the TOTSCo Team collaborating with approved trial participants. Disputes over the decisions of the trials team may be referred to the TOTSCo board.

A – Yes. Please let us know the details of your Managed Access Provider.
A – No. Your Managed Access Provider will conduct testing on your behalf.

A – Yes. Please contact us at [email protected] if you would like to take part.

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