Util-Assist is pleased to announce that PowerAssist outage management communication services went live for Horizon Utilities in December 2016. (Horizon Utilities is now part of Alectra Utilities, following its recent merger with two other Ontario electricity distributors and the acquisition of a third.) Thanks to the hard work of staff at both Alectra Utilities and Util-Assist, the PowerAssist program launched successfully in a tight six-week schedule prior to the holidays. The PowerAssist program and the benefits it provides for Alectra customers in Hamilton and St. Catharines has already been evident during several outages this year.
Kevin Scott, Util-Assist’s Product Manager responsible for the PowerAssist program, is proud that the service was able to improve Alectra Utilities’ customer experience so soon after launch. “The PowerAssist team and Alectra Utilities resources responsible for outage management in Hamilton and St. Catharines learned to operate efficiently together almost immediately and have achieved great results in the two months since launch,” Mr. Scott said. There have been several power outages in the Hamilton and St. Catharines areas so far this year, and the PowerAssist team was able to provide timely, accurate and informative responses to customer calls. In previous outages, these calls would have been transferred to and addressed by the control room. Mr. Scott highlighted one of PowerAssist’s main advantages by explaining that “PowerAssist allows the control room to focus on its main priority of coordinating the power restoration efforts, rather than fielding individual outage calls.”
With PowerAssist in place, Alectra Utilities’ customers in Hamilton and St. Catharines have reliable access to live agents 24 hours a day, 7 days a week when they call to report outages and other power-related issues.
About Horizon Utilities (now Alectra Inc.)
As of February 1, 2017, Horizon Utilities merged with Enersource and Powerstream to become Alectra Inc., which also acquired Hydro One Brampton at the end of February. Alectra is the second largest municipally-owned electric utility in North America, and serves nearly one-million customers across 15 communities in a 1,800 square-kilometre service territory.