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A utility in Brunei was in a position in 2003 where departments largely operated in isolation with different maintenance management systems, data standards, approaches and governance. Reactive maintenance and near-term issues took precedent over scheduled medium and long-term work. Customers were seen as end users and not as key stakeholders.
From 2005 to 2012, MWH worked on a program to take a more proactive approach to asset management and strengthen processes, systems and knowledge across departments. This staged program of work has provided the utility’s road and water infrastructure departments with, “a sustainable, systematic approach to planning and managing maintenance of their infrastructure assets.”
Our business-centric approach targeted operational efficiency (people, process and technology) in five key areas:
Responding to unplanned incidents and outages;
Performing planned maintenance and inspections;
Processing development applications and new connections;
Maintaining asset records and information; and,
Improving safety and accident reporting (roads).
For each improvement area, MWH identified where inefficiencies existed against industry benchmarks and set about incrementally improving business performance. Some examples of the foundational improvements included:
Defined levels of service measures related to asset performance, particularly surrounding reliability and responsiveness.
Design and population of a central asset register for the utility, including naming conventions, attributes and reporting requirements.
Data sharing between departments to ensure topographic, imagery, cadaster and demographic data was readily available to people’s desktop in a consistent intuitive format.
Creation of a central 24-7 customer call center for the utility and raising public awareness of the toll-free number.
Establish best-practice preventive maintenance procedures and schedules for critical facility assets.
Alignment with eGovernment initiatives and strengthening the utility’s information technology (IT) environment including data center, servers, computers, printers, servers, networking and disaster recovery.
Implementation of IBM’s Maximo work management system and ESRI’s ArcGIS geographic information system in a browser-based environment.
The impact of improvements under this program can be tracked back to the core business areas targeted. Some customer centric* examples include:
Responding to Unplanned Events
The average response time to calls dropped from over one day to 4.5 hours with less than 5% exceeding 12 hours.
By 2006, the call center was processing 55,000 calls a year with a 4-star satisfaction rating from its customers.
Processing Development Applications
The time to confirm as-built drawings dropped from over three days to less than 1 day
Customer service counters could process the application online and access property and connection details immediately cutting on average three days from the processing time
* Note that in Brunei, MWH established early on that improving customer service was the most significant driving force for change. Funding largely came from the sale of oil and user charging for services was minimal.