Powering the Mind

DQC Bureau
New Update

style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">Rural

Electrification Corporation (REC) is one of the 'navratna'

central public sector enterprises that comes under the Ministry of

Power's Rajiv Gandhi Gramin Vidyut Yojana. Its main objective is to

finance and promote rural electrification projects all over the

country. The organization provides financial assistance to state

electricity boards, state government departments and rural electric

co-operatives for rural electrification projects that are sponsored

by them.


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">THE


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">There

was a requirement for training the personnel from state electricity

boards (SEBs), distribution companies involved in the formulation and

implementation of RE projects, O&M officers of the power supply

system's right from junior level to senior executives, rural

electric co-operatives and other power utilities/ private power

companies. In India, there are total 83 utilities

(distributioncompanies) which provides electricity across the

country. The idea was to create a portal on which all the training

management modules need to be conducted for the people who are to be

trained. There are two sets of people needed to be trained-one are

the employees of these utilities and second, private partners who are

engaged as franchises.

style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">The

target was to train 1,75,000 people by the end of 2011. Given the

fact that such a large number of personnel at all levels have to be

trained all over the country, REC was convinced that the only way

they could do it was through the use of web and e- earning

technologies, deployed to deliver and manage the training as well as

the franchisees delivering that training. With this particular

objective in place, a training portal was created and REC is a nodal

agency which created this portal. On this portal, trainings got

conducted. It included setting up an yearly target for training, how

many trainings to be conducted, and how many people needed to be

trained; getting feedback, complaint management, and invoicing. All

these modules were incorporated in the portal.


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">THE


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">After

evaluating different solutions, REC zeroed on 'e-Xcellerate', an

e-learning application that has been developed by Corpus e-Ready

Solution, The organization believes that e-Xcellerate, which runs on

IBM power servers, would deliver the required functionality. Rohit

Kumar Shipstone, CEO, Corpus e-Ready Solution, said, “The

e-Xcellerate training portal is for national training program of


employees with online monitoring and management and national

franchisee training program with online monitoring and management. In

addition, e-Xcellerate allows for creation of micro-sites akin to

self service portals for utilities/institutions providing training to

C&D employees and franchisees.”

style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">e-Xcellerate

delivers the following functionalities:



Training delivery and


for approximately 75,000 group of C&D employees from various

power companies in the country and for approximately 40,000

individual franchisees from various power companies.


Managing training for all the

power distribution companies (approximately 100), and around 300

empaneled training institutes.

- style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">A

collaboration platform for distribution companies (utilities), C&D

employees, REC, its training institute CIRE at Hyderabad and other

third party training providers.



The data captured and

disseminated relates to training providers, utilities, training

institutes, profile and data of trainees, their training feedback,

claims raised by training providers, including its online processing,

based on successful delivery of training program. General features of

e-Xcellerate includes executive dashboards for Ministry of Power, REC

officials, and utilities heads; upgradeable/customizable to include

other capacity building and HRD initiative/other features that may be

introduced in future; provides content management system (CMS);

amenable to download/access all the relevant data of MIS on mobile

phone, desktop, laptop, palmtop formatted for PDA; multi-lingual


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">WORKING


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">e-Xcellerate

works in 3 parts-one part is learning management system which is

essentially a very advanced e-learning delivery system or solution,

second part is training management wherein a person can be tracked

not only when the training is going on but also after the training is

over in terms of his performance, etc. Both these parts create a

complete ERP. However, these two parts are implemented separately so

that if someone just wants the e-learning module, they can go for it

and the same applies for the training management system as well. And

if anyone wants both, they can go for both the modules as well,”

added Rahul Wadhawan, director, Corpus e-Ready Solution.


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">With

the launch of this portal, one has the access to the pre-training

material which helps him in preparing for the training. Then he goes

through the actual training process wherein there is an instructor on

the portal who will open a virtual classroom and he would take all

the participants through the material step by step. It is an

interactive classroom, where the sessions can be recorded, and the

students can get answers for any of their queries at the end of the

sessions. Post that, the students can have access to all the

materials, which have been covered, for revision. The system also

enables students to have peer-to-peer discussions and chat amongst

the group that was present during a particular training session. “We

also have to see who was the person who has been trained, what he is

being trained on, where the training will be utilized, etc.

style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">Once

the person has gone through the training procedure, he will have to

finally prepare for the certification. The system has a very strong

electronic delivery platform for the content, eedback, and

conversation platform for the students and the instructors, and

administrative platform wherein one needs to administer after the

training is over so as to ensure whatever training has been given is

fully utilized. It also helps in monitoring the trainers/faculties,

looking after their payments, etc,” asserted Wadhawan.

style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">CHALLENGES



style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">This

project started a year and half back. It was not much of a challenge

for Corpus to deal with REC, as the ISV has been working very closely

with the government sector. “Being a government focused

organization, we understand their language, need, etc. But yes, it is

totally a different set of environment when you work with a

government body as compared to a private sector. Government is very

clear in their objectives in terms of what they want. Ministry of

Power and REC officials were very clear intheir motive. It was a

smooth case,” said Shipstone. He further iterated, “IBM helped

us a lotin between in terms of providing the right hardware

infrastructure. Infrastructure has to be secure and reliable when you

have to train such a large number of people. Initial testing and

integration of services support by IBM helped us a lot. IBM power

series servers swung this deal for us. Once the application got

developed and it was put on the power platform, REC officials as well

as other stakeholders got satisfied.”

style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">However,

one major challenge that Corpus faced on the REC front was the

translation of the technology into the end deliverables in such a

fashion that it does not become a technological jargon for the end

customers. So, the ISV's effort was to convert all the jargon into

a plain language which was understandable by the REC and government

officials. “REC was very clear on the end deliverables. At the

different levels, there were different requirements. One has to

understand that at the top level of the Ministry, the requirements

are totally different like MIS and they were not keen on knowing how

the training is getting conducted. In the initial meetings, it came

down very clearly that by bridging the gap of the technology and end

deliverables, we will have a smooth sailing,” highlighted


style="font-size: 13pt;" size="3">As

far as the performance of the portal is concerned, it is absolutely

smooth. All the initial hiccups have been sorted out. Around 68,000

people have already enrolled for it. No issues on the support front.

We are able to keep our commitment on the service level agreement.

Internet connectivity in the remote areas of the country, is still a

bottleneck,” added Wadhawan.