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PTC Communications Management Suite

Organization: 
Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission
Award Category: 
President's Award
Award Year: 
2011
Submission Category: Customer Service
The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission developed three web-based programs to help improve communications with customers and internal staff. Alone, each was an effective package. However, integrated and used together, they make a powerful Communications Management Suite (CMS) that improves customer service, increases efficiencies and provides a potential new revenue source for the Commission. The first phase of the CMS was “TRIP” (Turnpike Roadway Information Program) a first generation automated travel advisory system. The PTC has expanded TRIP – added a customer contact and tech dispatch system, made use of mobile devices, social networking and cloud computing to create this suite of programs. Each of the new programs rests on the same web-based technology platform which was built in an expandable and modular fashion. Each has a mobile app or telephony component that leverages cloud technologies. Each program has components that improve work/cost efficiencies. Two of the programs have the potential for revenue generation. The three integrated programs in the CMS are:
 
  1. Customer Assistance Center Ticketing Utility System (CACTUS). CACTUS is a customized ticketing system that interfaces customer inquiries and trouble reports with PTC depts and functions. What makes CACTUS different from other ticketing systems is that it is integrated with other initiatives and serves as an overall controller.
  2. TRIP II – The Next Generation. TRIP was  designed to improve customer service by disseminating travel conditions through a web map/web site, via email/text alerts, on VMS signs, and through an interactive voice response (IVR) dial-in phone line. 
  3. Reports from the Road Crews (REPORTS). REPORTS is a web and telephony-based tool for PTC maintenance staff to report weather/roadway conditions while on the road. A Blackberry Application allows crews to enter conditions and view other reported conditions. It allows managers to view/approve reports from virtually anywhere. Reported conditions are automatically stored in the system and can be viewed by staff or crews for proactive response. Conditions are disseminated to the public via the TRIP II system. These three programs, made possible by leveraging new technologies, work in an integrated fashion to improve timeliness and accuracy of roadway reports to the public, to manage tech dispatch and repair tracking and provide a potential for producing revenue.