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SSP WFM to Increase California Multi-Commodity Utility’s Efficiency, Visibility of Capital Work

WFM 2.0

Utility Seeks Work Management System to Integrate Capital Work from Design through As-Builting

Status: Ongoing


The Need
A southern California municipality wanted to get employees using a less manual, more efficient process to manage new work requests. The utility sought to implement a single application to standardize designing, estimating, materials management, job-activity tracking and assignments, as-built recording, and more. The goal was to reduce manual data entry and create a centralized, accurate view of work order data, thereby improving decision-making and visibility into capital projects.


The BackgroundThe multi-commodity utility is known for being a forward-thinking, technologically savvy implementor of Smart Grid initiatives including smart meters and consumption monitoring. 

Determining Requirements for SSP’s WFM

The utility wanted to move its employees off manual work management tools, including spreadsheets, emails, and paper. They desired more automated processes, tracking tools, and the ability to integrate so departments could collaborate for faster, more accurate work completion. They identified several objectives:

  • Add Operational Efficiency
  • Improve Project Visibility
  • Significantly Reduce Data Inaccuracies across Design, Construction, and As-Builting
  • Enhance Field Safety (via more accurate data, better visibility) 
  • Provide for More Informed Decision-Making

Why SSP for Capital Work Management?

SSP’s work management solution Workforce Management (WFM) offers a unique fit for the utility. The features provided include:

  • Work Orders — Creation of Work/Service Requests
  • Graphic Work Design — Pre-integration to Schneider Electric Designer™ for Efficient Estimating in the Engineering Department, Open Integration Points for other Graphic Work Design tools
  • Tracking — Robust Tracking of Standard Work Request, Site, Facility, and Schedule Data
  • Configurability — Fully Configurable Work Request Workflow from Creation through Closeout
  • Ease of Use — Wizard Driven Status and Event Updates
  • Attachments — Digital Handling of Work Request Attachments
  • Project Communications — Interactive Comments on a Per Work Request Basis
  • Budget Allocation — Capital & Maintenance Project and Charge Code Management
  • Estimating — Easy-to-Use Compatible Unit (CU)-Based Estimating Tools
  • CU & Resource Management — CU Library Management Tools for Materials, Labor, and Equipment; Material Order Generation
  • Security — Role-Based Authorization Powered By Microsoft Active Directory Authentication
  • Assignments — User and Role-Based Work Assignment Queues with Designated Approval Chains
  • As-Builting — As-Built Tracking Based Off of Estimate
  • Report Generation — Out-of-the-box reports Including Cost Estimates, Field Work Packets, Estimates vs. Actuals, and Work Aging
  • Search — Basic and Advanced Work Request Search Tools (via configurable queries)
  • History — Complete Audit Tracking of User Edits and Lifecycle Events for All Work Requests

Anticipated Gains from the WFM Project

The utility estimates up to 95% of redundant data entry could be eliminated and at least 1,600 annual man hours saved. This frees resources to focus their time on analytical activities, like design and safety decisions. In addition, the utility defined 10 qualitative gains of the project: 

1. Safer Field Crews

Having accurate network build-outs readily available will increase the safety of field crews. 

2. Greater Reliability

Readily sharing project information regarding system additions / subtractions / modifications will increase reliability. 

3. Visibility

Improved visibility by supervisors and management as to the status of projects will aid in work optimization; all employees will be speaking with the same view. 

4. More Accurate Data

Overall inaccuracies of information across multiple systems will be eliminated, thereby improving the quality of decision-making. 

5. Better Customer Service

Accuracy and availability of information will enhance interaction with customers. 

6. Maximized Materials Efficiency

Material ordering will be streamlined and a just-in-time ordering method achieved to minimize cost and maximize project work efficiency. 

7. More Transparency

Improved transparency across the organization removes business silos. 

8. Integrated CU Management

A standardized CU library is used across the entire lifecycle of a single work request. 

9. Happier Staff

Increase employee satisfaction results from removing unnecessary layers/levels of effort. 

10. Faster Network Updates

Updates to the network happen in near real-time, rather than weeks or months later. 

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