Plano Public Safety Case Study
By Tracking Labour on Work Orders
For Each City Planner for Compliance
To Ensure No Disruptions in Service
Plano Public Safety Communications Uses eMaint CMMS to Keep Critical Communications Systems Operational in Four Texas Cities
The Public Safety Communications Radio Shop is responsible for procuring, issuing, maintaining and repairing radios, dispatching centre consoles, along with towers and weather sirens for the cities of Plano, Allen, Murphy and Wylie, Texas. They wanted a system that included customised work requests, work request approval rules and an automated assignment process along with the ability to customise the database to track and report in order to meet the requirements of each city manager. eMaint was just the software for the job.
The Public Safety Communications Radio Shop is part of the Plano, Texas, Public Safety Commission and is responsible for procuring, issuing, maintaining and repairing radios (est. 4,000+ units), dispatch centre consoles (22), along with towers (7) and weather sirens (37) for the cities of Plano, Allen, Murphy and Wylie, Texas. The mobile and handheld radios alone total approximately $16MM in assets and are used for both Emergency Services (police and fire departments) and non-emergency services (school districts, animal control, hospitals and maintenance departments).
Technicians are on call 24/7 for responding to emergencies such as storm siren outages due to lightning strikes or sections of the city without police and fire radio service if a tower is down. Service standards are based on incident severity; critical service outages must be fixed within four hours while non-emergency repairs must be completed by the next day.
The department started 12 years ago with one person responsible for tracking all equipment via an Excel spreadsheet. As the department grew to four technicians plus a manager responsible for over 4,000 assets, the spreadsheet became unwieldy, very slow to update and impossible to extract reporting information from.
Debra Elliott, Senior Administrative Assistant sought a system that included customised work requests, work request approval rules and an automated assignment process along with the ability to customise the database to track and report to meet the requirements of each city manager. After an online search, eMaint CMMS was chosen as the one system that could do it all.
Information from the massive spreadsheet was imported using the eMaint data import function which made it easy to get up and running quickly. The department uses the system for asset tracking including location, type, department, ID, cost, warranty information and repair history. Service calls to dispatch trigger work requests which are routed to on-call technicians via Smartphones for immediate follow-up when critical outages occur. Dispatch details problems on the Work Order which helps facilitate repairs and provides service history data.
Motorola Solutions is contracted for the servicing of radios and equipment. When a repair Work Order is opened, every step of the process is tracked. The system provides status updates and also supports repair or replace decisions. Turn around time on repairs is tracked and contractors are held accountable for adhering to service standards. The department also schedules preventive maintenance and inspections on weather sirens, service vehicles and the backup generators on towers.
- They are currently upgrading approximately 4,000 pieces of communications equipment from analog to digital. The system has enabled them to track progress on this project to ensure no disruptions in service.
- Labour tracking on Work Orders (particularly the emergency off-hours calls) supported decision to hire additional technicians to reduce overtime.
- A monthly report is provided to each City Planner (for compliance of their contract) detailing the number of emergency calls, breakout of time spent by technician and performance to service standards (time from reporting to completion on emergency outages).