The final day of the Member Information Conference is always an inspiring and motivational one, and this year was no exception. We were honored to have keynote speaker and author, Michael H. Goodroe, speak to our 2018 MIC attendees. Michael is the son of Michael Goodroe Sr. from Sawnee Electric Membership Corporation in Georgia. He was diagnosed at a young age with Autism and severe learning problems. In his presentation, Michael discussed the grueling process of trying to enroll in schools, only to be rejected because of his diagnosis. He spoke about the one school that accepted him and gave him a chance, and how their willingness to work with him made a huge impact on his life. In addition to the benefits school and dedicated teachers provided Michael, he also found success in several hobbies. To train his mind to focus, Michael took up karate at age five. He credits his teacher and mentor, Mitsanobu Uchida, as one of the people who completely changed his life, helping him earn his third-degree black belt. Although Michael’s SAT scores were not high enough to be accepted to college, another one of his hobbies helped pave the way for him to continue his education. Michael and his family discovered that he was able to sing classical music. Because of this ability, Michael was granted an exception and allowed to enroll in college at the University of West Georgia to sing with the school’s choir. He went on to complete his BA in History as well as his Master of Business Administration. Michael now works full time and serves as a motivational speaker. In his book, What Autism Gave Me, he reflects on the many obstacles and rejections [...]
Tool kit includes animations, digital content and marketing materials to spread cyber security awareness and safety More than 130 large-scale targeted breaches occur in the United States each year, and that number is growing by 27 percent each year. (Accenture) The average cost of a malware attack on a company is $2.4 million. (Accenture) Ransomware attacks are growing more than 350 percent annually. (Cisco) For every one of these statistics, there are hundreds more. Cyber security threats loom. Attacks are intensifying. Every second, hackers are targeting people, homes, small businesses and international corporations. The urgency is real, and National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) is responding. October brings National Cyber Security Awareness Month, and the technology cooperative has added another tool in its cyber security arsenal, with the launch of CyberSense, a free educational toolkit available to organizations nationwide. Designed specifically for rural electric cooperatives, public power utilities and telecommunications companies, the kit includes three short animated videos, downloadable bill stuffers, social media content and retractable banners. "Our target audience is end consumers/customers," says Jeff Nelson, NISC general counsel and vice president of Information Security and Risk Management. "Awareness starts at home. If we can bring a cyber security culture into our homes, we are not only providing a service to our communities, but we're helping to mitigate threats and strengthen our nation against these cyber crimes." NISC's leadership in cyber security extends into its software solutions, with a full suite of solutions designed to help Members protect their organizations from attacks, including training modules, detection and response solutions, endpoint protection, perimeter defense tools and vulnerability management solutions. "As a technology cooperative, it is our responsibility to arm our Members with premier protection solutions so they [...]
The 2018 Member Information Conference (MIC) has come to a close, and it was a great week full of learning and fun. The week wouldn’t have been as successful, though, without the help and participation of our Members. More than 40 sessions were led by NISC Members throughout the week and were among the most popular sessions offered at the conference.
St. Louis, Sept. 13, 2018 — National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC®), a leading provider of technology solutions to utility and telecommunications organizations worldwide, hosted more than 2,500 Members, partners and staff at its annual Member Information Conference (MIC) Sept. 11-13 at the America’s Center in St. Louis, Mo. The IT cooperative’s annual learning conference draws users from all over the continental U.S., Hawaii, Alaska and Canada. With class topics ranging from accounting and billing to engineering and customer care, the MIC offered more than 190 learning sessions throughout the three-day event, with 46 sessions being led by NISC Members. Along with the learning sessions, the 2018 MIC also hosted three powerful general sessions over the course of the conference. Day One was kicked off by NISC’s president and chief executive officer Vern Dosch, who delivered an inspirational opening general session focusing on NISC’s 50-year history of innovation and Member service. Day Two featured executives and thought leaders in the telecom and utility industries. Shirley Bloomfield, chief executive officer of NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association, shared her thoughts on the benefits that rural broadband networks bring to the national economy. Kirk Johnson, senior vice president of Government Relations for NRECA, discussed the state of the utility industry and importance of working together towards our common goals. “We were extremely pleased to host our Members this week at the 2018 MIC,” said Jasper Schneider, NISC vice president of Member and Industry. “At the heart of this conference is learning, and our Members had the opportunity to attend more than 190 different classes. We also had the pleasure of welcoming numerous industry partners and friends. As much as the MIC was about celebrating our 50 years of service and [...]
New Solutions, Features Unveiled at the 2018 Member Information Conference Saint Louis, Mo., Sept. 12, 2018 — National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) is celebrating 50 years of business at the Member Information Conference (MIC) this week in St. Louis, Mo. While the celebration is focused on the past, NISC’s solutions look to the future with new features and products being showcased over the course of the conference. “While we pause to celebrate 50 years in the technology industry at this year’s MIC, we have to ensure our solutions continue to focus on the future,” said Vern Dosch, President and CEO of NISC. “We want to make sure we’re staying ahead of the curve and continuing to deliver solutions that will help our Members do their jobs efficiently and effectively.” This week, NISC released a modernized design and new, enhanced functionality for iVUE Mosaic, a tool to help users make better business decisions by better leveraging data to identify trends. The new design provides an enhanced user experience allowing users to gain new insights from their data with more than 300 pieces of standardized content right out of the box. NISC Operations Analytics (OA) is another new NISC solution, helping engineers and system operators of electric systems harness the granularity of time-series data for better decision making. OA, along with EDD’s Distributed Engineering Workstation (DEW), enables users to look beyond peak system analysis to better grasp real system performance and provide better service to members, increased savings in their operations and better management of their electrical grid. iVUE Connect is helping carry NISC’s enterprise platform into the future. iVUE Connect – Service’s functionality continues to grow with the addition of delinquent collections [...]
There’s no denying that we live in a data-driven world. We’re constantly inundated by information and tasked with the responsibility of making key decisions. It can be an arduous task, especially when the wealth of information is so great and identifying important connections or correlations from the data is neither a simple nor swift process. Egyptian Electric Cooperative in Murphysboro, Ill., is no stranger to this task. For years, the cooperative spent much time and effort creating reports from spreadsheets and Word documents, only to often come up short in how that information was transmitted to Egyptian’s decision makers. In February of 2018, Egyptian deployed NISC’s iVUE® Mosaic – a business intelligence tool turning data into actionable information. “As we adopted more and more of NISC’s iVUE applications, it became obvious to us that we needed a better way to get at the data and analyze the data,” said Art Pontow, projects manager for Egyptian Electric. “The reports we were generating before iVUE Mosaic were time consuming, and they didn’t have the kind of flexibility we wanted. Mosaic really opened it up and gave us the ability to get at the data the way we wanted to and present it in a way that was meaningful to management and to our board directors.” Check out this testimonial video to hear more about how Egyptian is utilizing iVUE Mosaic. To learn more about iVUE Mosaic, visit nisc.coop/iVUEMosaic.
Saint Louis, Mo., Sept. 11, 2018 — At the annual Member Information Conference this week in St. Louis, Mo., National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) announced a new, modernized design with enhanced features for its iVUE Mosaic solution, a cloud-based tool helping organizations better leverage data and identify trends to make more informed business decisions. Along with a sleek, new design and improved user navigation, iVUE Mosaic now has over 300 pieces of standardized content available to users, providing a baseline to work towards their specific organization's goals. Depending on their needs, users also have the option to build their own content from scratch, with support readily available from NISC staff. "These new features allow our Members to gain immediate insights into their data by using out of the box content," said John Weber, NISC product line manager. "In addition, they can also easily customize an existing visualization to meet their unique needs." Other new features available to users include improved portal creation tools, expanded iVUE data sources as well as a New Data Source Explorer for navigation. Egyptian Electric Cooperative, located in Murphysboro, Ill., deployed iVUE Mosaic in February of 2018. The cooperative was looking for a better tool to not only analyze their data, but to present that data in an effective way to the decision makers at Egyptian. "Before we began using iVUE Mosaic, we gathered information from various NISC modules and developed reports from spreadsheets or Word documents," said Art Pontow, projects manager for Egyptian Electric. "It was very time-consuming, and the reports didn't have the flexibility that we were looking for. iVUE Mosaic gave us the ability to get at the data the way we wanted to and present it in [...]
Lake Saint Louis, Mo., Sept. 6, 2018 — National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC), a leading provider of software solutions to utility and telecommunication companies, announces its annual Member Information Conference (MIC) Sept. 11-13, 2018, in downtown St. Louis at the America's Center. NISC's premier learning event, the MIC, brings together more than 2,500 Members, NISC employees, invited guests and national speakers for a three-day conference featuring more than 190 concurrent sessions and three power-packed general sessions. "At the heart of the MIC is learning," says Jasper Schneider, NISC Vice President of Member and Industry. "We're able to emphasize our enterprise-wide technology solutions to help Members better enhance their operations and utilize the NISC solution suite to its full potential. Our scope spans a wide range of industry professionals, from executives to communications/marketing, accounting, finance, human resources and information technology professionals." This year's MIC celebrates NISC's 50th anniversary with special tributes to our rich history and a focus on the next 50 years. Highlights: Sessions From accounting and billing to engineering and all points in-between, the 2018 MIC will provide a record 191 sessions on the latest enhancements to NISC solutions, updates on the technology roadmap and discussions of issues facing the utility and telecom industries. Of these sessions, 46 will be Member-led, featuring best practices and case studies. Partner Pavilion As the hub for the MIC's events, the Partner Pavilion is home to NISC's Consulting Booth and Innovations Lab, where attendees can meet with NISC subject matter experts, as well as more than 30 exhibiting partners and vendors showcasing a variety of solutions and services valuable to our Member organizations. Thought-provoking General Sessions Sept. 11 Vern Dosch President and CEO of NISC Dosch will share [...]
Though NISC has always aimed to have a small-company feel, it’s no doubt that we are growing, and our Membership is growing as well. Though each of our four offices are based in the midwestern United States, we represent Members in all 50, as well as American Samoa, Canada and Palau. It’s incredible to see how we’ve expanded to become a true international organization over the course of our 50-year history. Kaua’i Island Utility Cooperative (KIUC) has been an NISC Member for 15 years. Contrasted to the scenery surrounding NISC’s offices, KIUC is engulfed by palm trees and lush greens – an oasis among oasis’s. For Mailer Alfiler, manager of Member Services for KIUC, it’s a scene all too familiar as she was born and raised on the beautiful island of Kaua’i in Hawaii. Despite a five-hour time difference, Maile said receiving support and help from NISC has never been an issue for the co-op. “It’s been a really fluid process managing the time difference,” Maile said. “We certainly prioritize and decide what can wait until the next morning, and what needs to be done now. But the after-hours support at NISC has been readily available to us. In the beginning when we first went live, we were using the after-hours support a lot but now, not so much so.” Just before becoming an NISC Member in 2003, Kaua’i Electric, as KIUC was formerly known, went up for sale with much uncertainty as to what was ahead. “I’ve been working here for 29 years,” Maile said. “We used to be a for-profit owned by Citizens Utilities. Kaua’i Electric went up for sale with the intent for it to become purely a telecommunications company, divesting its [...]
Lake Saint Louis, Mo., July 26, 2018 — National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC), a leading provider of software and solutions to utility and telecommunication companies, announces a key partnership with Momentum Telecom as part of its overall multi-industry enterprise software solutions offerings. Momentum Telecom, a leading provider of cloud voice, BBX broadband management and support services, offers customizable cloud-based applications, including voice, video and collaboration tools, for direct customers and more than 500 nationwide white label and channel partners. With this collaboration, NISC’s software solutions will integrate seamlessly with Momentum’s cloud-based solutions, offering NISC Members enhanced broadband services and a one-stop-shop for billing, payment and service offerings. “Our partnerships are crucial to providing our Members superior service,” says David Bonnett, NISC vice president of Product Management. “NISC really stands out in the marketplace for a couple key reasons: First, we’re a cooperative; our customers are our Members. We exist to serve, and we work for people, not profit. Second, we serve multiple industries including utility, telecom, broadband and municipal services. And lastly, we offer enterprise-wide solutions, enabling advanced, integrated IT solutions for consumer and subscriber billing, accounting, engineering & operations, as well as many other leading-edge IT solutions.” While NISC will continue to support and integrate with other third-party cloud-voice platforms, the technology cooperative’s preferred relationship with Momentum allows full integration with Momentum’s suite of services. “The integrations, access to the most advanced technology and sharing of knowledge that will come from this partnership is going to truly empower operators to reach new heights and will be a vital key to success in today’s business landscape,” said Tara Kelley, Momentum senior vice president of White Label. Both Momentum and NISC will be spotlighting their services at [...]