Empire District Electric Co. to shorten power outages with ARCOS solution

Empire District Electric Co. will soon hang up its after-hours manual phone dialing process for calling crews and, instead, rely on the Software-as-a-Service ARCOS Suite to automatically call and assemble crews to restore power and fix water leaks.

Empire purchased the ARCOS Suite to reduce outage times as part of “Operation Toughen Up,” an initiative for strengthening the company’s delivery system. Empire plans to have the ARCOS Suite in place this summer for about 240 electric workers and water servicemen.

An analysis showed Empire that, during power outages, its contact center was sometimes overwhelmed by customer calls while dispatchers manually dialed phones to contact crews for restoration work.

Empire’s manual callout process requires service areas to send callout lists to its contact center every two weeks. The callout order for crews is based on work agreements. When Empire’s outage management system reports an outage, dispatchers in the contact center use lists in binders to find and call linemen who can respond to trouble.

With ARCOS in place, the contact center will initiate an automated callout with the click of a button. Crews will be alerted in seconds to the trouble via mobile phone, pager, home phone, text or email. The automatic ARCOS call for crews electronically mimics the callout process and rules exactly as outlined by the agreement with the IBEW.

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