Wales & West Utilities is a leading gas distribution business, who operates, maintains and develops this network and also provides a gas emergency service. Address capture integrates seamlessly within their SAP CRM solution and enables it to validate new addresses. In addition, address cleaning was deployed to help it verify addresses for emergency call-outs to domestic consumers.
Wales & West Utilities is a leading gas distribution business which came into being in 2005 when National Grid Transco sold four of its gas distribution networks. The company is charged with operating, maintaining and developing the network. It also provides a gas emergency service via the National Grid's call centre system. The company has 1,200 employees and 600 contractors.
When founded in June 2005, the company immediately embarked on a major business restructuring and systems replacement project. As part of this project, it sought an address management solution to help validate addresses, primarily for its new gas connections operation.
New connections is one area of the gas distribution business where there is high competition, so they were keen to find a solution that would integrate seamlessly with its SAP CRM solution, and enable it to validate new addresses quickly and efficiently. Address capture o was the ideal choice. More recently, address cleaning was deployed to help it validate addresses for emergency call-outs to domestic consumers.
Right address first time
When call centre agents enter new gas connection customers' details into the CRM system, the system calls on the Experian Data Quality software to validate the address and complete the details correctly. The software integrates so well with SAP that, according to Wales & West Utilities' head of IT Phil Pike, most agents don't even realise they are using it.
Address cleaning was introduced as part of a project to replace legacy National Grid systems with Wales & West Utilities' own solution. When a member of the public smells gas, they call an emergency number which is routed to a national call centre operated by the National Grid.
Wales & West Utilities uses the tool to validate each address as it comes in, before dispatching it to the engineer closest to the address to deal with. It has a real-time look-up to the MPRN (Meter Point Reference Number) database which identifies each individual gas meter in each dwelling in the UK and ties it to the correct address for that meter in seconds.
Benefitting from accurate data
Running address capture and cleaning is helping Wales & West Utilities to get its engineers to the right address, first time, more often. This means they are able to meet standards set by the gas regulator, Ofgem, for reaching the source of gas escapes within a one-hour period.
The successful deployment of the Experian Data Quality software as part of a much larger systems replacement project has also enabled Wales & West Utilities to become the first of the UK's independent gas networks to develop its own stand alone systems.