PowerAssist continues to gain momentum, with three more utilities joining the service. Oakville Hydro, Collus PowerStream and Whitby Hydro joined PowerStream in using Util-Assist to provide 24 x 7 outage management call centre services.
Weather conditions this spring provided a litmus test for the PowerAssist model. As temperatures rose during thaws, moisture in the air combined with road salt and contaminants on hydro poles to create the perfect conditions for pole fires. On multiple occasions in early March, pole fires left 30,000+ customers across PowerStream’s service area without power. Similar events occurred concurrently in surrounding territories such as Oakville and Whitby. Throughout this and similar events, PowerAssist agents were able to exceed Ontario Energy Board (OEB) call standards for all four utility customers, demonstrating the effectiveness of the staffing model and redundancy planning. Moreover, PowerAssist’s live agent answer rate for the largest customer, PowerStream, has consistently been in excess of 90% since the inception of the service in June 2014.
Util-Assist continues to market this emerging business, generating significant interest from additional utilities. Util-Assist aims to make PowerAssist a central service for Ontario utilities: a larger client base supports increased staffing levels that will benefit all participating utilities. For more information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.