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Novellus Systems, Inc. Licenses ClickSoftware's ClickFix Diagnostic Software Solution.

Business Editors/High-Tech Writers

CAMPBELL, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 19, 2000

Product Will Dramatically Reduce Troubleshooting Time for

Major Semiconductor Tools Manufacturer

ClickSoftware Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: CKSW), a leading provider of software solutions for optimizing service operations, today announced that it has secured a major contract for its ClickFix online fault diagnostic product with Novellus Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: NVLS) in a deal worth in excess of three-quarters of a million dollars.

Novellus sells and supports chemical vapor deposition (CVD), physical vapor deposition (PVD) and copper electrofill systems for the semiconductor industry.

Using ClickFix, Novellus expects to improve customer service by dramatically improving "Mean Time to Repair" (MTTR) and reducing equipment down time. It will also lower the time and cost of training new field service engineers (FSEs), as well as reduce the time it takes to troubleshoot a service problem. The number of mistakenly replaced parts is also likely to be reduced, thus creating savings in spare parts.

In practice, Novellus FSEs faced with a problem will enter the initial symptom(s) into ClickFix. It will then guide them step-by-step through the diagnosis process, suggesting additional symptoms to look for, which tests to perform, and finally what repair action(s) to take. The ClickFix solution is based on two components. The first is a knowledge composer tool used to assist Novellus' staff in compiling their knowledge, experience and expertise into well-structured knowledge bases. The second is a universal diagnostic engine that accesses these knowledge bases and provides troubleshooting guidance.

Novellus will install ClickFix on every FSE's laptop computer for stand-alone use. In addition, FSEs will be able to log into Novellus' server and use their laptop as a thin client with the ClickFix Server as a Central Knowledge Base. On a regular basis, various cases will be downloaded to the ClickFix Server, and using its built-in advanced learning algorithms, the experience embodied in these cases will be compiled and integrated with the existing knowledge base, thus getting smarter with use. The whole service organization will ultimately have access to a comprehensive knowledge base that represents the collective work done by the entire service force over the life of the equipment.

"We selected ClickFix from our short list because of its rapid knowledge composition process and its diagnostic accuracy -- two critical elements required for sophisticated semiconductor manufacturing systems," said Brian Caughey, Novellus's Director of Global Product Support. "I believe that the troubleshooting time can be reduced by more than 20% with a probable reduction in spare parts, using ClickFix," he said. "In our preliminary evaluation of the product we even had cases where a novice engineer using ClickFix located the problem in about 30 minutes, compared with 5 hours for experienced engineers who did not have ClickFix. Based on these findings, we expect ClickFix to shorten training time by at least 30%."

"When equipment fails, the challenge is to get it back on line as quickly as possible. This is particularly critical in the semiconductor industry where downtime is incredibly expensive," said David Joseph, Vice President ClickFix Products. "Given the complexity of semiconductor equipment, time-to-repair really hinges upon the skills, experience, and knowledge of individual field service engineers. ClickFix offers a truly revolutionary concept in this regard, because it enables organizations like Novellus to elevate all field service and help desk engineers to an expert level. Gone are the days of the shot-gun approach to equipment repair."

John Chenault, Novellus's Executive Vice President of Business Operations, added, "Considering the fact that our rapid expansion calls for substantial hiring of field service engineers, achieving consistent service performance across the entire field force is a challenging objective. We expect that ClickFix will help us achieve this objective."

ABOUT CLICKFIX

ClickFix, an online problem resolution tool, helps elevate every technician in a service organization to an expert level. It supports the complete service call life cycle: from Self-Help users, to Help-Desk engineers, to FSEs and on-site technicians. ClickFix helps determine the cause of the problem, then provides the user with accurate, comprehensive, and easy-to-understand instructions on how to fix it. ClickFix can be used in the field with a laptop computer in a stand-alone mode, or with a hand-held device over the Internet. It can also be used in remote diagnostic mode by communicating with a built-in diagnostic system.

ABOUT CLICKSOFTWARE

Headquartered in Campbell, Calif., ClickSoftware is a leading provider of end-to-end service chain optimization solutions for service organizations. Its products optimize service operations by simultaneously increasing revenue, reducing operating costs, and increasing customer loyalty.

Used by customers in a wide array of industries, including telecommunications, utility, retail, high-tech, IT service, automotive, healthcare, and financial services, ClickSoftware's solutions cover strategic capacity planning, short term resource planning, problem resolution, daily scheduling, real time wireless monitoring and rescheduling, and continuous on-going business performance analysis.

A key success factor underlying ClickSoftware products is the ability to integrate seamlessly with the solutions of leading enterprise software vendors. ClickSoftware has marketing or reseller agreements with many of the leading application software vendors in the CRM, eCRM, and ERP world.

In addition to its Silicon Valley headquarters, ClickSoftware has offices and distributors throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, Germany, Israel, and the United Kingdom. ClickSoftware's products are used by both B2B and B2C service organizations, including: British Gas, Caterpillar, Compaq Computer Corporation, Crown Castle, Crawfords, EMEB, Enbridge Home Services, Gerber Technology, High Speed Access Corp. (HSA), ICL, Level 3 Communications, Swisscom, Verizon, and Wards.

For more information about ClickSoftware, call 408/377-6088 or 888/438-3308 or visit www.clicksoftware.com.

Except for historical information contained herein, this press release contains express or implied forward-looking statements about ClickSoftware's product performance, product integration, customer benefits, and future operations, and includes implied statements concerning market effects of our products and our growing leadership role in the market. Such "forward-looking statements" involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause actual results or performance to be materially different from any future results or performance expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. ClickSoftware's achievement of these results may be affected by many factors, including among others, the following: uncertainties regarding continued market acceptance of our products; uncertainties in our ability to timely develop future products or enhancements and upgrades to existing products; uncertainties regarding the impact on the service markets brought by our products; uncertainties regarding our intellectual property; and the uncertainties of customer operations. More information that could affect the company's performance is set forth in ClickSoftware's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, ClickSoftware's prospectus dated June 22, 2000 and ClickSoftware's 10Q, and may be found within the sections titled Risk Factors and Management Discussion and Analysis. Investors and potential investors are directed to these materials for additional information.

Throughout this release, software and hardware products are mentioned by name. In most, if not all, cases, these product names are claimed as trademarks by the companies that manufacture the products. It is not our intention to claim these names or trademarks as our own.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Dec 19, 2000
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