Handheld Devices Improve Customer Service
by Aaron Trauring, Project Manager, Enterprise Technology Portfolio Management Department

Project Manager Aaron Trauring at NYCHA’s Quarterly Senior Leadership Meeting in May.

NYCHANow continues its “employee voices” series featuring articles by employees about initiatives and events that they know best. This issue includes an article about handheld devices by Project Manager Aaron Trauring, and enhanced information on NYCHA’s websites by Director for Performance Tracking and Analytics Sybille Louis on page 6. To submit an article about a project in your department, please contact NYCHANow. We want to hear from you!

We’ve all experienced receiving a package from UPS or FedEx and electronically signing their mobile device. Gone are the days of pen and paper receipts. As part of the NextGeneration NYCHA initiative to transform to a digital organization, soon the days of pen and paper resident work orders will be gone as well.

In January 2016, NYCHA began a pilot program where maintenance workers use handheld devices to manage resident work orders at Howard, Lincoln, and Wagner Houses. A select number of carpenters were part of the pilot as well. Using the handheld device provides many benefits to supervisory, frontline, and office staff. Supervisors will be able to electronically assign a work order directly to an individual and it will appear on his or her device in real-time, eliminating the need to print out paper work orders. In cases of emergencies, there will no longer be a need to run back for the paper ticket, which will be forwarded directly to the handheld device.

Maintenance workers, who perform an initial assessment of potential follow-up work, will be able to take and attach pictures of the required repairs to the electronic record. Skilled trades staff, who follow up on these work orders, will be able to view the photographs prior to arriving at the apartment. This will allow them to better prepare for the job, with a more complete sense of which tools and materials are required.

Back-office staff will no longer have to spend countless hours closing out work orders, and can better utilize their time. Additionally, since users will be closing out their own work orders, manual data entry errors will be minimized. Upon completion of the work, the resident will electronically sign on the device, as well.

After evaluating the success of the pilot, we have initiated an incremental roll-out Authority-wide. Wave 1 began in June, when devices were rolled out to an additional seven developments, as well as exterminators in Manhattan and the Bronx. Waves 2 and 3 began rolling out in July and include the 12 FlexOps developments, exterminators in Brooklyn and Queens/SI, and the start of heating plant technicians (HPTs). We look forward to the continued rollout to the remaining maintenance and skilled trades staff.

At the completion of this initiative, approximately 3,500 NYCHA field staff will have handheld devices to manage corrective maintenance, preventive maintenance and inspection work orders. To ensure a smooth transition, maintenance workers will have on-site support coaches at their developments during their first few days of usage. Users can call the project Help Desk at 212-306-7000, option 1, to report any issues.

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