70% of our planet is covered with water, making the topic increasingly important. This water is not always clean and directly usable for us humans. Only about 1% of the water reserves available worldwide is of drinking quality. No wonder it is one of the most valuable raw materials of the 21st century. However, as a human factor, we contribute significantly to water pollution. The focus of our society is changing and so the sustainable and resource-saving use of water is a primary focus.
ATB WATER GmbH, with its headquarters in Porta Westfalica and 4 other locations across Europe and the USA, has
adopted this focus as its corporate objective, and for over 20 years has positioned itself as a globally-active specialist and market leader in decentralised and semi-centralised waste-water systems - from standardised small wastewater treatment plants to application-specific solutions.
Example solutions include food processing for the tourism sector, and components for equipping and servicing wastewater treatment plants.
FROM CUSTOMER SERVICE TO PREDICTIVE MAINTENANCE
With more than 100,000 small wastewater treatment plants installed, processing wastewater of more than 500,000 people, good customer service and regular and predictive maintenance are indispensable. In order to ensure this, ATB WATER
decided as early as 2013 to plan its technical field service in Germany with FLS VISITOUR and thus ensure the reliable cleaning of wastewater through regular and proactive maintenance.
With the expansion to FLS MOBILE in 2014,
customer service was taken to another level.
Technicians now have all the necessary order information, optimally equipped service vehicles that contain all the relevant spare parts, and communicate transparent customer
information, including arrival times. Vastly different skill sets, including the requirements for a supply and disposal operative, or electrician are also planned into order types.
OPTIMISATION OF THE ENTIRE PROCESS CHAIN - BY MEANS OF FULLY AUTOMATED PLANNING PROCESSES
In early 2020, ATB WATER Customer Service Manager Kevin Wintergrün and FLS Project Manager Gregor Lausberg jointly analysed the simple possibilities for optimisation in the entire process chain.
A large number of points were identified which, when combined
together create a recipe for future success:
Company-wide re-evaluation of technical field service offer
Goal-defined rules and consideration of possible goal conflicts
Adoption of operational planning with FLS VISITOUR
Intensive training of dispatchers to provide competent support in answering ad-hoc queries in day-to-day business using FLS VISITOUR
Through the identified and fully implemented measures, the in-house dispatchers gained a strong understanding of, and confidence in the FLS VISITOUR solution and the PowerOpt planning algorithm that works in the background.
TRIAL AND ERROR - A TEST SERIES TO BUILD KNOWLEDGE
Trial series and the Scheduling Test represent a major advantage of the FLS software and FLS service. The employees of ATB WATER were able to put the measures described and developed above through their paces with real data. Through parallel intensive discussions with FLS Project Manager Gregor Lausberg, all scenarios could be tested, resulting in an extremely successful subsequent go-live of the measures.
EFFICIENCY GAINS THROUGH INTELLIGENT MONITORING
In the fourth quarter of 2020, standardised extensions were integrated and went live completely and without complication. The additionally established monitoring now provides important key data from which valuable insights are derived to enable further increases in efficiency. Despite the complications caused by the COVID pandemic, and the training of new staff, an increase in productivity was achieved compared to the same period of the previous year.
"Going in to the project we had initial concern that a provider could truly meet our requirements. We were able to prove, together with FLS, what is really and realistically possible. The achievable results surprised us. The path we have taken is really taking our company forward." says Kevin Wintergrün, Customer Service Manager at ATB WATER GmbH.
"It is a pleasure to work with FLS VISITOUR. The holistic planning and optimisation approach of FLS supports us in many places; we are faster and more efficient with the customer and have been able to record a significant reduction in planning and dispatch efforts."
Kevin Wintergrün, Customer Service Manager at ATB WATER GmbH. "Together with all those involved, we are currently working on optimising reporting and integrating new technical possibilities."
LOOKING TO FUTURE GROWTH
The technology now forms the basis for a further expansion of services and the future extension of their range of services. With the implementation with FLS MOBILE, efficient processes (BPMN) are also taken into account so that the engineers and technicians of ATB WATER GmbH can be supported better.
"By optimising order and route planning, significant time resources were created in the field which contributed to an additional, successful expansion of our service portfolio. We are excited to see what further results we will be able to record once the range of services has been expanded. Optimisation is a continuous process that FLS VISITOUR brings us. It is in the platform's DNA - as standard." Kevin Wintergrün continued.
"FLS VISITOUR is an ingenious instrument, and like any instrument it needs time, curiosity, team spirit and determination to allow it to sound its best. ATB Water GmbH has all of the willing, and now the tools, to create optimised results today and tomorrow". adds Gregor Lausberg, Project Manager at FLS.