T&D World Magazine

Software Offers Up-to-the-Minute Views of Day's Schedule, Out-of-the-Box Scheduling

Oracle has announced that the now-available Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management v 1.4.5 lets utilities reschedule field crews in real time.

"Now, when unexpected events occur, utilities can accommodate them almost instantly," said Linda Jackman, vice president of product management, Oracle Utilities Global Business Unit. "They can change the schedules of as many field crews as are necessary. And they can do so as many times during the day as needed."

With the new version of Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management, utilities can more easily accommodate emergencies, jobs that take longer than expected or a crew member who must leave unexpectedly. "Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management can reschedule and reroute all affected crews within moments," Jackman said. "Crews satisfy customers by keeping appointments. Maintenance happens in time to keep warranties in effect. Productivity remains high."

True embedded real-time scheduling is just one of several product breakthroughs available in the Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management v 1.4.5 release, which also features:

  • An integrated Gantt chart. It gives supervisors a visual representation of the day's schedule and promptly reflects the real-time scheduler's changes.
  • Updates to contact-center information as scheduling changes occur. As a result, customer service representatives can tell callers exactly what appointment slots are available. And they can often provide customers with faster-than-expected service by booking them into slots vacated by others.
  • A Map Time Editor that changes anticipated travel times based on the time of day. The Map Time Editor automatically adjusts schedules when crews must drive in rush hour traffic, for instance, or along routes where construction projects cause delays.
  • Built-in rules that reflect utility needs. While some mobile workforce and scheduling products force utility staff to write the scheduling rules, Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management can produce a basic utility field crew schedule right out of the box. Utilities need to only make minor adjustments to the application to reflect unique local situations or business processes.

"These major product enhancements spring from our embedding within Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management the real-time scheduler acquired last year from Sidewinder," Jackman explained. "As we worked with the scheduler, we realized we could take the real-time concept into additional parts of the product."

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