Work Management Systems Gain Efficiencies through Integration
Jim, a network analyst at a water utility, comes into work each morning and logs into multiple pieces of software. He has to be fluent in each of these systems and regularly switches between them in order to perform his activities. Jim creates new network jobs, updates current job statuses and commentary, while ensuring that the field teams, his management and the various other systems he uses are all kept up to date. Jim’s frustration with the inefficiency of the status quo is typical. Like many water utilities, the use of multiple systems increases the degree of human error, which leads to inefficiencies and potentially unsafe operations. The lack of system integration is one of the principal barriers to streamlining water utility operations and makes managing network events such as supply interruptions, asset failures and leaks even more complex.
As a member of the central network analysis team, Jim supports several field-based managers and technicians. Systems integration between network event recognition and the work management system (WMS) would be especially helpful to Jim with respect to asset failures. Once an event is automatically recognized, Jim can, at the click of a button, push the event into the WMS for field prioritization. He is reassured that his events and their associated maintenance is managed throughout their lifecycle, with full visibility and synchronisation across systems and departments.
Looking at a real-life meter fault example, it’s clear how Jim could manage the process through integrated work order management.
Jim receives an alert about a meter fault. He reviews the alert and initiates a work order. He selects the “Create order” feature in the TaKaDu interface and a work order request is immediately sent to the WMS. New work orders are only possible when one has not yet been created for a particular event, preventing duplication.
Upon selecting this function, TaKaDu first looks for an existing open work order for that particular meter in the WMS. If one is found, Jim is alerted to its presence and then has the option to relate the TaKaDu event to it or ignore it and create a new work order.
When a new order is created, the mandatory fields in the WMS are completed using the information from the TaKaDu event, including meter ID, event type (meter fault, no data etc.), status, area and any additional commentary held in TaKaDu. When the work order is created, an indication is presented in TaKaDu showing the WMS order ID with a hyperlink back to the WMS, along with the time the job was last updated. The above information is stored in the history of the event in TaKaDu so that Jim that may refer to it in the future, supporting future asset management decisions.
Going forward, the event will be synchronized with any updates in the WMS and an email notification will be sent to Jim making him aware of status changes.
Jim has seen meter availability increase since the implementation of this TaKaDu – WMS integration. He’s also saved time by avoiding dual-processing events and has increased the visibility of asset failures among his colleagues in other departments and utility executives. These benefits offer true efficiency gains, not just for Jim’s team but across the utility.
Through simple integration of TaKaDu with its WMS, the utility has achieved operational savings and is maximizing the benefits from its existing infrastructure.