Handy idea cleans up for BT

A new handheld data solution has helped cleaning contractor Amalgamated Cleaning Services (ACS) to win a contract to maintain...

A new handheld data solution has helped cleaning contractor Amalgamated Cleaning Services (ACS) to win a contract to maintain 80,000 BT phone boxes.

The Palm OS system used by ACS' field service engineers has given them a more efficient way of scheduling jobs and ordering parts.

Robert Levesque, financial director at ACS, said, "A key part of securing the contract with BT Payphone was our deployment of an advanced field service system to help ensure maximum up-time of the payphone network.

"Previously we were drowning in paper. We have now done away with the faxes and can operate at near real time and can focus on productivity."

Engineers link into a mobile data server provided by Rangegate and download instructions to their Palm OS Symbol handheld devices.

As they go about their tasks they record their activities and parts used for repairs. At the same time as schedule information is received from the server, completed jobs and parts requirements are uploaded.

The system has enabled more efficient reporting and auditing of repairs, which has led to more efficient scheduling and cut costs through lowered parts inventory.

ACS has plans for barcode scanners to be incorporated onto the devices in future.

antony.adshead@rbi.co.uk

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