Wright-Hennepin Electric Wins GeoDigital Solutions' 2012 Innovation Award

Minn. co-op speeds outage management response with WorkStudio mobile platform

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HAMILTON, Ont. – May 8, 2012 – GeoDigital Solutions today announced that Rockford, Minn.-based Wright-Hennepin Cooperative Electric (WHE) Association is the recipient of the 2012 Innovation Award, presented annually by the LiDAR mapping, imaging and data acquisition firm to utilities that create customer value with the company’s WorkStudio® mobile work management software platform. WorkStudio has built a leading market position by automating typical utility work functions including vegetation management, storm assessment, maintenance management and engineering design.

WHE is one of Minnesota’s largest member-owned electric utilities, serving more than 46,000 electric customers in Wright and western Hennepin counties west of Minneapolis.  GeoDigital recognized WHE for integrating WorkStudio mobile engineering tools with Milsoft Utility Solutions’ Core Engineering and Operations (E&O) enterprise system, transforming its outage management process into a highly advanced, automated system for faster restoration.  The updated system is now paperless, supporting a host of mobile data generated through WorkStudio that includes real time outage and restoration notifications, work orders and automatic vehicle location (AVL).

Lance Hovland, WHE's VP of Energy Distribution, said “Recognition by GeoDigital as an innovator is a testament to the hard work of our IT staff and the desire of our crews and dispatchers to continue to improve efficiency and customer service through technology.   In the office or out in the field, the new technology helps us be better organized, which results in improved outage restoration times.”

WHE began this project as a pilot program in Jan. 2011 to install a new AVL system, and to strengthen its ability to locate and communicate with restoration crews and vehicles.  By February 2012, WHE completed the outage ticket project, implementing WorkStudio for outage tickets and AVL, in addition to engineering design.  Real-time outage information and AVL crew locations are visible in both the field and office, enhancing teamwork and safety.

“Utilities just keep increasing the level of ingenuity and sophistication to improve their business processes and Wright-Hennepin is no exception,” said GeoDigital Solutions president, Scott Rogers.  “They’ve done an outstanding job of integrating operational and information technology to serve their customers better and we truly value our ongoing partnership.”

“Wright-Hennepin is a leader in applying communications and information technologies for better engineering and operations,” said Milsoft CEO Wayne Carr.  “We are delighted to work with our good friends at GeoDigital to ensure that our respective applications work together seamlessly for the benefit of the utility and its customers.”


About GeoDigital
GeoDigital International Inc. and its predecessor companies have a 20-year history in airborne mapping for the utility industry, providing leading-edge solutions for mapping, vegetation inspection and line rating and clearance analysis services to customers across around the world. With offices located throughout Canada and the United States, GeoDigital has mapped more than 480,000 km (nearly 300,000 miles) and more than 1,800,000 structures worldwide making GeoDigital the leader for corridor mapping in North America. For more information please visit www.geodigital.com.

About Milsoft
Milsoft has been supplying software solutions to the utility industry over 20 years. Milsoft customers include over 1,000 rural electric cooperatives, municipalities, educational institutions, consultants and others both in the United States and abroad. For more information, please visit: www.milsoft.com.

Contact:
Marc Marton
marc@themcdonnellgroup.com
404-583-0003
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