Origin Consulting

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Announcements and Updates

Upgrade Successful! Green Mountain Power and Origin Consulting Upgrade Mobile Workforce Management – June 12th, 2017

Green Mountain Power, supported by Origin Consulting, successfully completed their upgrade of MWM from v2.2 to v2.3.  The upgrade project completed this past weekend, successfully migrating to production on Monday, June 12th, 2017.

The upgrade employs a two-phase approach, phase one completing last weekend and phase two targeted to begin later in 2017 or early in 2018.

Phase 1 - the upgrade and customization work, and

Phase 2 - service pack upgrade and migration to MCP.

In addition to the technical upgrade, the Origin team re-wrote GMP’s MWM screen customizations to ensure a smooth transition to the Mobile Communication Platform (MCP) during phase two.

Shelly Hendee, GMP’s Project Manager remarked, “The detailed focus of both the GMP and Origin team from the start of the upgrade effort, through testing, and then on to production rollout resulted in a flawless go live weekend”.

Upgrading to MWM v2.3 enables a host of benefits for GMP.  The utility will better manage their field work and crews due to enhanced scheduling, alerts, and measurement functionality.  In addition, technology enhancements such as JavaScript and HTML5 in v2.3 allow GMP to better maximize their investment in the MWM solution. 

 

Mark Black
Origin at CS Week - May 22 - 25, 2017

Come meet our team at booth #920 and learn how Utilities are driving field workforce efficiency with MobileLite.  Sign up for a demo during CS Week and you will be entered in a drawing for a free solution license!

Mark Black
Origin and GMP roll out new Oracle ODM Features & Functions

Origin recently completed a project with Green Mountain Power in Burlington, VT to further leverage the capabilities of ODM and add efficiencies to GMP’s device management practices.  Origin worked with GMP on enhancements to enable  the meter services team to eliminate historically manual, paper laden activities related to meter field tests. Also, integrations were enhanced between CCB, MWM, and ODM that resulted in the elimination of duplicate entry in systems by the meter services team members. End-result creating more accurate, reliable data across the solutions.

GMP is the first utility to go live with Oracle’s Operational Device Management (ODM) software in mid-2015. Like most early adopters, GMP accept limited functionality for the short-term, knowing that later versions will include functionality to help define, and frankly demand, to increase efficiencies and savings.  Some organizations, especially innovative utilities like GMP, need to expand software like ODM further and faster than product development company release cycles allow.  Along with implementing ODM for GMP, Origin Consulting, LLC has also continued to support, upgrade and enhance the product to meet GMP’s high standards for efficient work practices and quality data management. 

Mark Black
Origin Leads Orlando Utilities Commission to New Bill & Printing Solution

Over the last ten years, Origin Consulting and Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC) have developed and maintained a partnership built on shared success. This past weekend marked another significant accomplishment with the delivery of a newly re-designed bill and printing solution. As part of a massive technology modernization effort, OUC and Origin worked together to deliver a new bill  that is easier to read and offers a more in-depth view of electric and water usage, giving OUC’s customers more control. The project started in September of 2016 and went live this weekend March 5th, 2017. Origin helped lead the effort by working on behalf of OUC ensuring key tasks were organized and scheduled and all parties were supported throughout the process.

"We thank Origin for being an instrumental part of the team that made this happen!  OUC's bill print projects are a huge success,"  said Maggie Dugue, Vice-President, Customer Service.

Major team accomplishments included:

  • Leading a total bill re-design of over 25 bill types   
  • Mapping of new bills to the PSERM bill print extract
  • Creating additional extract logic to ensure data is passed to the bill extract and supplementary files
  • Updating eBills to accommodate the new design
  • Working with the new bill print vendor and OUC Customer Service and Marketing to ensure the bills were being printed correctly
  • Updating the OUC website to leverage a new bill repository
  • Conducting a conversion of the bill history for 5 years of historical bill images
  • Creating easy to maintain documentation of the bill mapping and bill print rules for easy of long term support and future bill enhancements
  • Coordinating all aspects of QA, UAT, and parallel testing
  • Managing a complex cutover to the new bill printing, a new bill exception handling process, web site upgrades, and new eBill notifications
Mark Black
Origin & TEP Celebrate Five Year CC&B Support Anniversary

February 28th marked the five-year anniversary that Origin Consulting has provided CC&B support on-site at Tucson Electric Power (TEP).  In 2012, Origin joined TEP onsite, as a partner with Cognizant, to provide CC&B support to TEP business and information technology resources.  “It has been an enriching experience developing relationships with business users from different departments of the TEP organization and playing a role in improving their operations and achieving their goals. We are all very much looking forward to what else we can accomplish together in the years to come,” said Roberto Tan, Origin’s Service Director working onsite with TEP. 

Origin’s long-term presence and engagement with TEP enables a much deeper relationship where the collective team can set goals over years and measure accomplishments against those goals. The TEP team has been able to establish processes and standards that do not dissipate after a project completes; they are enforced consistently to the point it has become part of the culture.

“Tucson Electric Power recently celebrated the 5th year anniversary of our partnership with Cognizant and Origin.  Through this partnership, TEP has staffed and completed many more IT projects than would have been possible prior to our partnership with these firms.  Cognizant and Origin have helped our IT department become a valued and trusted partner within TEP's business”, said Wendy Greess, Manager, IT Customer Operations.

Mark Black
Oracle Utilities User Group Conference – Origin shares stage with Tucson Electric to discuss CC&B success story

Origin Consulting joined Tucson Electric (TEP) Business Management to present the successful outcomes from TEP’s recently completed Credit & Collections project.  TEP undertook a series of specific CC&B and process initiatives to re-engineer and streamline several long-standing process challenges within Credit & Collections.

Roberto Tan, an Origin CC&B Architect working with TEP, accompanied by Brian Bub, Customer Service Manager, and Kevin Rhea, Customer Care - Supervisor (Credit & Remittance), from Tucson Electric, presented at OUUG.

Tucson Electric sought to overhaul the Credit & Collection processes and activities in CC&B to improve effectiveness.  ‘Doing more with less’ was the team’s objective; driving to use existing resources more efficiently, reduce write-offs, and alter customer behavior. The effort involved changes in Collection and Severance activities in CC&B, the automated outbound call campaigns, changes to the letter templates for both electronic and paper communications.

TEP realized these measurable gains...

  • A significant reduction in company mailings by nearly a million annually with a rather large hard dollar savings.
  • Optimizing C&C paths to enable a significant reduction in the number of collection processes and severance processes.
  • Stemming the deluge of field activities being generated by CC&B that inundated TEP’s field services.
  • Significant increases in Credit & Collection field activities completion rates.
  • Increasing average debt associated to C&C field activities being worked was increased by 50% on average across all service areas. In the largest service area, the average debt associated to worked field activities was increased by 100%.
Mark Black
Smooth, Successful CC&B Upgrade at Miami-Dade Water and Sewer

Miami-Dade Water and Sewer, along with resources from Origin’s business and technical teams, successfully completed their upgrade of CC&B from v2.3 to v2.4.  The four-month upgrade project started mid-September 2016 and completed smoothly this past weekend, January 20th 2017. 

Coinciding with the billing system upgrade, the joint team installed a patch to eliminate the CC&B Multi-Purpose Listener from Field Work process integration. In order to improve performance and reliability of the solution, CC&B and MWM were deployed to WebLogic Coherence Clustered domains as part of the technology upgrade.

Mark Black
Origin Consulting – Platinum Sponsor at Oracle Utilities Edge Customer Conference

Oracle Consulting, LLC is proud to once again sponsor the Oracle Utilities Edge Customer Conference Product Forum, located in Phoenix, AZ, Feb 13-14 at the Platinum level.   It is a unique opportunity, for both Origin and their customers to be able to see what the Oracle Product Managers and Developers are planning for each of the products.   

Along with the Edge, Origin is a Presenting Sponsor for the Oracle Utilities Users Group OUUG Conference, Feb 14 -16, co-located at the Hilton Squaw Peak, Phoenix AZ.  Origin, the 2016 OUUG Pacesetter Partner, a distinction awarded each year by the user community, values the experiences, conversations and presentations with and by the Users that this conference offers.  “To be one on one with the user community allows us to better prepare for the changing utility landscape, so we can continue to meet and exceed our client needs,” said Scott Shirley, President of Origin Consulting.

Mark Black
Scott Shirley is named President of Origin Consulting

Scott Shirley, a veteran in utilities focused professional services, was promoted to President of Origin Consulting this morning.  "Scott has been with our firm for just over two years and has proven his capabilities to the team," said Mark L. Black, founder of Origin.  "Scott has served Origin as the Vice-President of Consulting since he joined in October of 2014. Our clients have grown to trust Scott's word which is the essence of any services business.  We are lucky to have him accept this key leadership position in our growing company."

Mark Black
Origin completes successful CC&B upgrade at Spire Energy – v2.3.1 to v2.4

This past weekend, Origin stood at Spire Energy’s side as they deployed their upgrade to CC&B 2.4.  Part of the upgrade scope included Origin executing the conversion of nearly 100 custom COBOL programs to Java and 52 XAI services to IWS.  Despite a few hiccups in the early hours of deployment, the quality of work and levels of expertise applied to the upgrade paid off in assuring a successful, stable deployment.

Mark Black
Origin deploys CC&B 2.4 New Rate Engine at UNS Energy.

Last week was an important milestone for Unisource Energy Services (UES, a subsidiary of UNS Energy along with TEP) Rate Case Project. Representing the end a yearlong project, UES slowly transitioned customers to new rates on CC&B’s enhanced rate engine with no production issues or customer complaints.

Mark Black
Success Story: Tucson Electric Power CC&B 2.4 Upgrade

Utilities are faced with a rapidly changing industry and increasing expectations from their customers. Adapting to these factors requires a mature, flexible, and highly-scalable customer information system, designed to improve customer service and enhance financial performance. Oracle today announced that Tucson Electric Power (TEP) -- which delivers safe, reliable power to more than 414,000 customers in the Tucson metropolitan area -- upgraded its customer information system in its commitment to provide superior customer service. 

By working with Cognizant and Origin Consulting to upgrade to Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.4 Service Pack Two, TEP is able to further leverage its existing Oracle investment as well as ensure compatibility with its enterprise software, including its meter data management system -- ultimately enabling the utility to save money and provide enhanced customer service.

ORLANDO, FL--(Marketwired - Apr 13, 2016)

Mark Black
Origin Wins 2016 OUUG Pacesetter Partner Award

Origin Consulting LLC (Origin) has been recognized with distinction by the Oracle Utilities Users Group community at the recent 7th Annual OUUG 2016 users group conference in Phoenix, AZ.

As an Oracle Platinum partner and a long-time supporter of this independent utility users group, Origin was awarded the 2016 OUUG Partner Pacesetter Award for outstanding contributions made to both their utility customers’ success and to this “for-users, by-users” grassroots industry event. This inaugural award honors those partners who demonstrate innovation and unparalleled success in the deployment of Oracle enterprise applications as nominated and voted upon by OUUG delegates worldwide.

Mark Black
Green Mountain Power Partners with Origin Consulting to Implement Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management

Origin Consulting LLC, is pleased to announce the go-live of Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management at Green Mountain Power (GMP). Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management, selected in February 2014, provides inventory, asset and configuration management of smart grid devices. It provides operational knowledge of each device’s location, characteristics, firmware updates, configuration management, scheduled activities and audit compliance. GMP, a cutting-edge power utility serving 250,000 customers throughout Vermont, will use this product to initially manage current and voltage transformers, AMI meters, non-AMI meters and customer-leased heat pumps.

Green Mountain Power is pleased to utilize the capabilities that Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management provides and comments, “We strongly believe Oracle Utilities Operational Device Management has the capabilities to help us address several short- and long-term challenges that required a well-thought out approach. With 21 inventory stockrooms, we needed a better way to manage our meter inventory. Heat pump warrantee compliance required proof of annual inspections. As our smart devices expanded, we needed a better way to communicate with them and manage firmware. To ensure a successful implementation of a new solution, we carefully managed our initial scope, and chose Origin to provide guidance and get the job done.”

Mark Black
Origin Delivers Implementation of Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management Version 2.2.0.1 at ENSTAR

Origin Consulting LLC announced today that they have delivered the implementation of Oracle Utilities Mobile Workforce Management (MWM) version 2.2.0.1 at ENSTAR, a regulated public utility that delivers natural gas to approximately 137,000 customers in south-central Alaska.

The latest version of the solution, which provides a real-time, end-to-end enterprise solution for managing field work, will enable ENSTAR to achieve maximum visibility, control, and performance of field resources. Through a productized integration with Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing (CC&B), ENSTAR now has real-time updates detailing the progress of field work through the completion of service orders.

According to John Sims, ENSTAR’s Director of Business Development, “We were excited about the new out-of-the-box functionality, but also wanted customizations that would bring back components from earlier versions that were not included in version 2.2. Origin implemented the solution, along with delivering those customizations. We were very happy with the work they did.”

Mark Black