A TAU spokesperson says the new system “will build the organisation’s efficiency in delivering a quicker service with greater transparency and accuracy in information and accounts”.
Project manager Polly Teis, who led the five-member team responsible for instituting the IT changeover, and also happened to be the very first person to make a payment on her electricity account after the new system went live on Monday, said it took “lots of hard work” to get everything up and running.
“I think it took about as long as we thought it was going to take,” she said of the project’s two-year timespan.
“It’s been a huge learning curve. Because we upgraded all the servers, all the hardware. We were all on old versions of Windows and every PC got replaced, so we’re all on Windows 10 now, all the latest versions of everything.
“So it was a big change for everyone in the organisation. And then the new software: a lot to learn.”
Teis described the new system as a “very big investment” for the power company, although no one at TAU was able to supply CINews with any official figures on just how big that investment was by print time.
From a customer perspective, the new system means that customers can now opt to have their power bills emailed to them (as well as paper bills being left by meter readers), something Teis said could be helpful for anyone going overseas.
As well as this, customers with multiple connections will now be assigned a single customer account number instead of having a different account for each connection.
Customers should also note too that payments will now be applied to clear any overdue amounts first before moving to the current bill, something the old system didn’t do.
Project team member Jocelyne Ngarua also added that customers wanting to look up the details of any past transactions will now find that process a lot easier, as a copy of every power bill will now be stored in the new computer system.
“If you come looking for a transaction that happened say two years ago, it won’t be so hard to find that information,” said Ngarua.
“We can get the information out faster, whereas before we had to go through boxes of files and spreadsheets and all that.”
“And hopefully the rats hadn’t eaten it!” added Teis.