Customer Management System

There are tons of systems out there trying to improve business processes of utility companies in general or electric companies in specific.

The key is still doing the re-engineering process well and the application system will just a tool to follow the processes. I put some of my thoughts about Electric Management System in this blog. Feel free to read and comment.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Upgrade into Automatic Meter Reading (AMR)

Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) is becoming a trend in utility company. Various vendors are offering nice features of AMR. However utility company should consider again if they need or if they are ready to implement this automatic meter reading. I have seen 2 out of 5 utility companies that I visited are implementing AMR but they are not benefiting much of the functionalities.

AMR has a functionality that transmits the meter reading automatically to billing system using ways of communications technologies. Either using a simple phone line, or using other telecommunication technologies like LAN, GPS, wireless, satellites, etc. From the 1 of the companies that I mentioned are not fully utilized the AMR because they just do not have reliable telecommunication technologies. In the end, they need to send readers to read the meter manually. The other 1 is not able to make an interface between AMR to the billing system. Thus, what the use of having AMR then?

Utility company should evaluate their conditions before spending money to upgrade meters to automatic meter reading. At least, here are the points that should be focussed on:

1. Within the budget? Conduct Cost and Benefit Analysis. We know that AMR can bring a lot of benefits like on time reading, early detections of irregular consumptions, better monitoring off peak and peak consumptions, better monitoring for complex tariff computation, etc. But make sure the company can utilize all of them.
2. Have strong communication network.
3. Will be able to integrate to other systems (billing system, scada, meter fraud)
4. Human Resources are prepared with the technology. Only users that understand the system can benefit from AMR.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

One solution :