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PEAK Service Organization Deploys Field Service Automation Solution

Press release from the issuing company

Columbia, Maryland - (April 7, 2005) -- PEAK Technologies, an RR Donnelley company, is well into an on-going implementation of a field service automation system for PEAK's Field Service Organization that the company expects will yield a 14,000-hour timesavings and a $2 million revenue gain. The mobile solution automates field service operations with point and click workflow processes that address all the information involved in a field service workers day. After researching the market, PEAK selected a product that provides access to enterprise data, workflow automation and robust functionality while delivering significant opportunities for cost savings and improved customer engineer productivity. The new application, PEAK IntelliField, runs on handheld terminals that communicate with a server over a wireless network, which in turn interfaces with the company's enterprise system. PEAK IntelliField automates service workflow processes such as: creating work orders on the fly; receiving real-time dispatched jobs; scheduling appointments; managing cross-sell and up-sell opportunities; retrieving and updating spare parts inventories; gathering and accessing customer information history and service level agreement details; and collecting customer signatures. "We found that compared to other software products available, PEAK IntelliField was a very flexible solution offering significantly more field-service specific functionality," said Pat Shriane, Vice President, Service for PEAK. "It was not just the canned solution many Field Service software products offered. In addition, PEAK IntelliField takes advantage of standards-based technology so it was easily adjusted to our optimized work flow." PEAK mobility software engineers developed the transactions necessary for the day-to-day activity of the field service staff and the application was quickly ready to roll out to one PEAK service region as a pilot implementation. Call information is automatically moved from the system to PEAK IntelliField and then transmitted in real-time over a wireless network to the Customer Engineer's (CE's) handheld terminal. The CE can use their handheld terminal to obtain contact information, a listing of equipment, previous service calls, and the status of service contracts on each piece of equipment for any of their accounts. The CE can instantly access a database that shows them the location of every part in PEAK's inventory. The application automatically tallies the costs, determines whether the job is covered under a service agreement, and generates the invoice back at headquarters. The bill can be printed and mailed before the CE leaves the customer's site, generating a substantial improvement in cash flow. The customer can sign off on the job right on the screen of the handheld and the image of the signature will be stored on the server. The software also automatically prompts the CE to cross-sell as the job is being completed. In the past, PEAK's 300 CEs received service calls through pagers and handled all record keeping on paper. PEAK recognized that the previous paper-based process was time consuming and could be more vulnerable to data entry errors. A simple case of illegible handwriting could trigger incorrect invoicing. The number of calls a technician was able to make in a single day was limited because they had to spend valuable time filling out paperwork. "We have implemented the PEAK IntelliField application in one region and the results have been very impressive," added Shriane. "Even though this was an internal rollout, the PEAK Mobility Solutions Group treated us like a typical customer engagement with detailed project meetings and plans, return on investment analysis, and dedicated project management to keep the rollout moving. We are projecting that as we roll the solution out to our entire field service force we will reduce costs by decreasing field service support staff hours, increase our first-time repair percentage by 15%, reduce inventory by 15%, reduce service time per call by 20%, and increase the sales revenues generated by our customer engineers (CEs) by almost 60%."