SOTS Data File

A key element of SOTS is the SOTS data file, consisting of a header record and one or more outage event data records used to transfer the outage information between the customer and the supplier.

The SOTS data file Header Record is the first record in each SOTS data file submission. It provides the recipient information with which to determine what type of data is to follow. This allows for more flexible processing, improved error handling and support for all versions of the SOTS template. Header record information includes the SOTS revision level, used to permit concurrent support for multiple SOTS revisions; unique identification of the file to accommodate automated detection of duplicate file submissions; an email address for the sender, to communicate with the sender should a record fail validation and a test mode field to allow for testing of the SOTS interface (both internally and externally).

SOTS data file Data Records contain all of the information that must be collected for individual outage events. A team of TL 9000 experts reviewed the TL 9000 Requirements and Measurements handbooks to determine exactly what information needed to be collected and furnished to a TL 9000 certified organization. In addition, the team specified some information that, while not necessarily required for TL 9000 compliance, would be useful in calculating field performance data. The types of information are noted respectively in the SOTS data record template as Mandatory, Dependent, and Optional. In addition to specifying what information must be collected and reported, SOTS also specifies the length and data type (e.g. Alphanumeric, Character with 20 spaces, Date in the form MM/DD/YYYY, etc for each information field.

SOTS supports several data file formats: comma separated values - CSV, Microsoft EXCEL - XLS, and Extensible Markup Language - XML. No other ‘packaging’ (such as MS Word document, FAX, paper, Text file) is supported.