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Minnesota Power Case Study

Client Situation

Minnesota Power, a division of ALLETE, provides electricity in a 26,000-square-mile electric service territory located in northeastern Minnesota. When KorTerra was first introduced to Minnesota Power’s locating operation they were renting teletype printers from Gopher State One Call and had a printer in each of their 12 office sites. These printers printed tickets which were given to locators to locate and complete. Minnesota Power stored these paper tickets for record keeping for one year. Anytime someone needed information on a past locate, Minnesota Power staff were required to file through reams of paper to find the necessary information.

Minnesota Power had a need for a centralized solution and to eliminate some of the paper that was being shuffled through their organization. They discovered that KorTerra could not only meet their needs, but provide additional functionality to streamline their operations. 

Solution 

Minnesota Power implemented KorTerra Dispatch. KorTerra Dispatch has enabled Minnesota Power to eliminate the rental printers in 12 offices and receive each locate electronically into KorTerra Dispatch at their Duluth office location. From there, each ticket is dispatched to the appropriate site where the information is printed and located.

KorTerra Dispatch allows Minnesota Power to rid themselves of the paper locate audit trail.  There is a detailed audit trail, because each locate ticket is electronically recorded within KorTerra Dispatch.  Now when Minnesota Power needs to find a past locate, they are able to perform a simple ticket search within the software and pull up the information they need without shuffling through files of paper. 

With KorTerra, Minnesota Power has a different way of handling their emergency tickets. With their old method of receiving tickets via the teletype printer, a staff member was required at each of their 12 office sites to receive those tickets and take appropriate action if an emergency ticket was received. Now with KorTerra, they have a staff member at their Duluth office running and managing all emergencies for the 12 sites. Via the Herald, KorTerra’s monitoring application, an audible and visual alarm occurs with each emergency ticket. The dispatcher receives the emergency and makes calls to the locators in the field for immediate response. 

Minnesota Power is utilizing KorTerra Reports to ensure all tickets are received. No tickets are lost when using KorTerra because of the electronic receiving. KorTerra also has audit discrepancy reports to be run daily to ensure all tickets have been received from the One Call Center. They are also reaping the benefits of access to other reports such as the Monthly and Area Office ticket counts for management reporting, budgeting and forecasting.

Results

The number one benefit from the KorTerra software is described by Terry Salo, dispatcher. He says the entire process is faster and easier. From not having to manage drawers of paper, to easily looking up ticket information, Minnesota Power is pleased to have centralized their locating operations with KorTerra.

KorTerra has saved Minnesota Power many expenses which were associated with their legacy model such as paper and printer costs and employee headcount in each office. KorTerra is also allowing Minnesota Power locating employees to better spend their time because they are not wrapped up in processing so much paper.

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