Arlington, TX and Williston, VT - February 29, 2012 - Harris Computer Systems (Harris), a subsidiary of Constellation Software Inc. (TSX: CSU) is pleased to announce that Arlington Water Utilities has successfully integrated the ONLINE Utility Exchange solution with Systems & Software's enQuesta CIS solution, to offer a comprehensive solution to manage and eliminate utility customer bad debt.
Arlington Water Utilities, a municipal utility providing water, wastewater and storm drainage services to the 365,000 residents of Arlington, Texas (Arlington), has been a strategic partner with Systems & Software (S&S), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Harris, since 2001. Through the direct integration between enQuesta and ONLINE Utility Exchange (OUE), Arlington's customer service representatives are able to validate the identities of new customers who are applying for service and receive a real-time response that is stored with the customer's record when the new account is created. This service provides Arlington with better risk-management when setting up new customers, reducing future collection activities and expenses. These cost savings ultimately serve the best interests of Arlington's ratepayers.
As the only total solution for eliminating utility bad debt, the OUE solution allows clients to instantly assess the delinquency risk applicants pose and charge an appropriate deposit to protect their organizations. Powered by a proprietary Exchange Database, the OUE solution offers exclusive, real-time access to the payment experiences of utilities throughout the nation to help utilities stop bad debt before it starts. Unlike traditional credit reports, the OUE report is color-coded for easy readability and provides exclusive access to the Exchange data at no extra cost.
One-button access via enQuesta
Instant credit decisions
Sophisticated ID verification and fraud detection tools, including Red Flag alerts
Exclusive access to OUE's proprietary, national Exchange Database
The easiest-to-read credit report in the industry
Raja Mukherjee, General Manager of Systems & Software, is delighted to see the S&S partner portfolio continue to expand. "We are very excited to have forged this partnership with ONLINE Utility Exchange. We feel this integration will allow our customers to better manage their customers' outstanding debt and aid in the adherence to Red Flag rules. We look forward to many more projects with OUE."
ONLINE’s President, JW Blair, adds, “Partnering with Systems & Software has been a pleasure and continues ONLINE’s mission to provide utilities with the tools and resources they need to eliminate their bad debt quickly and easily. We look forward to helping S&S clients improve their business operations and congratulate Arlington on their successful implementation of the ONLINE Utility Exchange.”
Laurie Foreman, Customer Service Manager at Arlington Water Utilities, commented, “In August 2011, the City of Arlington Water Utilities successfully implemented ONLINE Utility Exchange’s Social Security validation service module. Systems & Software’s staff thoroughly worked with us throughout the process of working with OUE, the integration with enQuesta, and the implementation.”
Foreman added that “this service has allowed us to strengthen our Red Flag Rules of customer name and Social Security number validation. If the information the customer provides us over the phone does not match, the customer is required to come into the office and present proper identification and Social Security card. Since implementation, we have averaged about 1,007 OUE reports per month. In addition to strengthening our Red Flag Rules, our long-term goal is that this accurate data will benefit us in collecting outstanding balances on inactive accounts.”
Foreman was very impressed at the ease of integration between OUE and enQuesta. “Of all of the new features that we have implemented over the years, this one was the most seamless. The integration that S&S developed with OUE made the procedures of incorporating this new step during the activation of new accounts extremely easy. We set up all activation work orders which were mandatory for the OUE process to be fulfilled. S&S also automated the process of creating the work order that auto-populated the information retrieved from OUE, saving customer service the time it used to take to populate the work orders manually.”
About Arlington Water Utilities
A municipal utility, Arlington Water Utilities serves the residential and business customers in Arlington, Texas. Arlington Water Utilities provides water, wastewater, storm drainage and refuse billing services for over 100,000 customers. For further information on Arlington Water Utilities, please visit their website at www.arlingtontx.gov/water.
About ONLINE Utility Exchange
Established in 1956 as a credit bureau and collections agency, ONLINE Information Services, Inc. is currently the nation's leading developer of risk management and debt recovery solutions for the Utility, Property Management, Healthcare, and Mortgage industries. Servicing Utilities throughout the nation, the ONLINE Utility Exchange is a utility-specific credit bureau with the single goal of providing the tools necessary to eliminate bad debt. For more information, visit their website at www.onlineutilityexchange.com or contact:
The ONLINE Utility Exchange
About Systems & Software, Inc.
Since 1973, Systems & Software has been a top-rated CIS provider to municipal and investor-owned (IOU) water, electric and gas utilities. With an unrivalled track record of success, the company’s web-based enQuesta software drives advanced business performance including utility billing, revenue management, mobile workforce management, GIS integration, electronic bill presentment & payment (EBPP), automated meter integration (AMI/MDM), time-of-use (TOU) billing, asset management/work management integration, customer self-service web portal, business intelligence and reporting. Based on service-oriented architecture (SOA), enQuesta is specifically designed for utilities and is proven to increase efficiencies and revenues, as well as enhance customer service. For more information about Systems & Software, and enQuesta, please visit www.ssivt.com.