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Across the world, the boom in e-commerce — inevitably exacerbated by the global pandemic — is in the process of totally transforming traditional postal services. While in the past, postal workers on bicycles or on foot delivered lightweight letters and cards, the industry now handles far greater numbers of packages, big and small. In sum, a traditional postman or woman has been turned into a full-fledged delivery service, no longer pedaling a bicycle but driving a van.

Set to Explode

Mexico was the country with the fastest growing e-commerce sector in 2019 yet still, compared to bricks and mortar retail, it accounted for just 2% of the country's total sales, lagging behind its northern neighbor, the US, where e-commerce contributed 10% to the total figure. It's increasingly clear that, as the Internet and smartphones have become ever more accessible, e-commerce in Mexico is set to explode, which will lead to rapid growth in express package delivery services.

The Mexican Postal Service — SEPOMEX— was well aware of this fact, covering as it does 96.71% of Mexico's population. With a pivotal role to play in both strengthening social connections and promoting economic development, SEPOMEX knew that it needed to enhance its express delivery service capabilities and upgrade its Information Technology (IT) infrastructure, boosting mobile office efficiency. This in turn would also give it the ability to innovate and develop new services in the future, putting it in a strong position to adapt to potential future industry changes.

Challenges Facing Office Networks

As e-commerce develops, order numbers spiral, increasing pressure gets put on delivery times, and the frequency of deliveries grows and grows. Traditional operations, such as laboriously filling out paper forms, are simply unable to keep pace with these most modern service demands. It was in this environment that SEPOMEX decided to build an electronic, digital, and all-wireless integrated office network, using Mobile Office Automation (OA) software to process service requirements in real-time, helping it to obtain the data required — covering all its services, warehousing, transportation, and distribution —for comprehensive decision-making. After the network was deployed, overall service quality and efficiency has been improved, while the management process has been standardized and automated.

On SEPOMEX's legacy office network, Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) had insufficient uplink bandwidth, and the OA software often encountered frame freezing, lowering work efficiency. Meanwhile, wired access networks restricted employees' work locations. Additionally, some wireless access networks that had been running for a significant period of time could not differentiate between employees and guests in terms of access permissions, which posed network security risks.

Huawei E2E Agile Campus Solution

To tackle the issues that SEPOMEX faced, Huawei brought its extensive experience in all-wireless campus network construction and Operations and Maintenance (O&M), to offer an End to End (E2E) agile campus solution powered by next generation AirEngine Wi-Fi 6. Featuring highly reliable carrier-class devices, all-wireless access, and a platform for intelligent security defense and unified management, the solution helped SEPOMEX build an agile wireless campus network. Furthermore, it delivers a highly secure, efficient, and reliable mobile office experience for employees.

All-wireless high-speed access based on the next generation Wi-Fi 6 standard (802.11ax). AirEngine 5760-10 is a Wi-Fi 6 wireless Access Point (AP) that supports 2 x 2 Multiple Input Multiple Output (MIMO). It provides services simultaneously on both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequency bands, achieving a device rate of up to 1.774 Gbit/s. With built-in Smart Antennas, signals can target users as they move, providing significantly improved wireless coverage. In addition, the AP allows expansion of an Internet of Things (IoT) module through a Universal Serial Bus (USB) port. This module supports IoT protocols such as Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and ZigBee, as well as flexible extension of IoT applications in the future, such as asset location.

A highly reliable and easy-to-deploy campus network. CloudEngine S5731-H Series access switches and CloudEngine S12700E Series aggregation switches offer non-blocking switching and zero packet loss even in high concurrency and heavy load environments. The switches enable network deployment within minutes and can respond to postal service changes more flexibly.

User permission control that's flexible. AirEngine 9700-M — a Huawei wireless Access Controller (AC) — employs user- and role-based access control to isolate guests from employees, improving the security of the office network.

Advanced threat detection that's powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI). HiSecEngine USG6500E Series firewalls work with the SecoManager security controller to implement service-driven policy management based on AI technologies. Additionally, network devices, security devices, and HiSec Insight (a security situational awareness system) work together to build a proactive network security defense system. Such a system features comprehensive threat awareness, analysis, and response, safeguarding SEPOMEX's postal services across all aspects of its operations.

A simplified and unified management platform. Huawei's eSight Information and Communications Technology (ICT) infrastructure management system manages both wired and wireless devices, as well as visualizing all network traffic. It effectively monitors network quality, manages security policy, and demarcates faults quickly, as soon as they occur. Such functionality simplifies network O&M, improves O&M efficiency, and lowers O&M skill requirements.

A Modern and Efficient Office

After upgrading its network with Huawei AirEngine Wi-Fi 6, high-speed wireless network coverage has been implemented across four SEPOMEX office buildings, easily meeting network requirements for various services. Meanwhile, efficient collaboration among applications, terminals, and edge data has been successfully achieved, improving office efficiency. Through data analysis and value mining, Huawei has provided intelligent support for SEPOMEX's services and decision-making. The upgraded network enables efficient network management and intelligent security control, paving the way for the digitalization of SEPOMEX's services. Undoubtedly, it is the ever-changing expectations and needs of customers that drive SEPOMEX's digital transformation. And only by delivering quality services can SEPOMEX fully achieve its goal of connecting society and revitalizing the economy.

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