Mobile Automated Service Order Completion

Centric helps utility improve operation and revenue stream efficiency through mobile, handheld devices and improved business processes.

The Business Need

An Ohio-based power company is a regulated electric business serving 500,000 customers in a 6,000 square mile area. The company generates electricity at 10 power plants, mainly located along the Ohio River, and has approximately 3,750 megawatts of total generating capacity.

For the client, manual order completion was a time- and resource-intensive process. Each day 1,000-3,000 paper-based orders were mass printed from the Customer Service System (CSS), then distributed among five organizations and dispatched to 80 Field Technicians. The technicians completed the paper orders in the field and returned them to a Customer Service Representative at the end of the day to be manually entered into the CSS.

The client’s project vision included the following:

  • Automatic assignment, routing and download of service orders to Field Technicians’ hand-held devices
  • Order upload via a WiFi access point sent directly to the CIS for completion
  • A configurable, custom solution which achieved the desired functionality for a lower total cost than available packaged applications.

Centric’s High-Impact Approach

Experienced Centric consultants partnered with the client to design and develop a practical, custom solution to meet the client’s specific needs. Centric performed the following key activities:

  • Project planning
  • Assisted with decisions regarding platform for the custom development
  • Requirements analysis
  • Solution architecture development
  • Designed, Built, Tested and Deployed
  • Application support transition
  • Trained/coached in-house developers

Results

The project was delivered on-time and within budget.  During the first month of production, approximately 22,000 orders (87 percent) were electronically completed without manually keying data into CSS.  In addition, the order assignment and routing process was reduced from hours to minutes.  The corresponding reduction in the turnaround time between work performed in the field and customer bill generation resulted in faster receipt of revenue for the client.