Summer Internship: Southern Company

During my second week, I had the opportunity to meet with various members of Client Service Analysts (CSA) and the technicians of the IT Client Services unit. The CSAs explained and demonstrated their roles, responsibilities, and how they interact with clients in what is called the “Southern Style Way.” The CSAs analyze, consult, and train their customers in utilizing desktop support technology that is available to them , as well as addressing their business’s need to work in the most efficient and cost effective way. I was also exposed to different clients within southern company they support on a daily basis. The technicians or Client Service Specialists (CSS) assist customers with and hardware or software problems. CSSs are the third level of customer support in addressing the problems that cannot be resolved by the Support Center. Both groups follow a motto to help fulfill the “Southern Style Way”: TEAMWORK=Customer Satisfaction.

In addition to learning about the CSA’s and CSS’s roles and responsibilities, I was able to tour the Alabama Control Center (ACC) and the Power Coordination Center (PCC). Both groups are kept unique and separate, and they are not allowed to communicate with one another as a result of the Enron Scandal of 2001. That event brought new policies and procedures for many companies. As a result, the ACC is responsible for the real-time operation of the Alabama Power Company transmission system. They control multiple voltages ranging from 46KV- 500KV, and their primary purpose is to safely operate the transmission resources of Alabama Power and Southern Company. As for the PCC, they focus on reliability and several other aspects like transmission networking and transmission line outage coordination to meet the compliance requirements for multiple groups, for example, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). Even though both groups cannot communicate with each other, their duties are similar. They both consist of data desk, balancing desk, interchange desk, reliability desk, and operations planning. Seeing both areas at work in two massive rooms below street level, made me feel as if I was at the NASA Control Center preparing for lift off.

-Brianna Murdock

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