How to use the Manual Read App

Roles: Admins, Manual Readers
Last updated: March 2021

Once a Manual Read property is configured within the NextCentury Web Portal, users can be assigned as Readers to the property. The NextCentury Submetering Solutions (NCSS) mobile app is used to quickly and easily record manual reads at properties. Readers can also view and keep track of due dates, grace periods, number of units, notes, meter locations, and more.

This article outlines how Manual Readers can use the NCSS mobile app to view and record reads. For additional information on Manual Read properties and how they can be configured, see Manual Read Properties


Recording Manual Reads

1. Download the mobile app

For information on downloading the NextCentury manual read app, see NCSS Manual Read App.

2. Sign in to the app

Open the NextCentury manual read app and sign in using your NextCentury username and password. 


Note: Once assigned to a property, an activation email will be sent to the user's email with a link to create NextCentury sign-in credentials. If no email is present, contact your Billing Company or Contractor to verify the email used.

3. Open the Meter Reader section

From the Home page, select the Go To Meter Reader Section option.



The Meter Reader page displays assigned properties. Select the refresh icon  refresh-ccw.svg  to update the list of properties at any time.


Property not listed...

Properties will not be listed for Readers unless their user emails have been assigned to those properties. Properties may also not be listed if the current Contractor or Billing Company has had the property transferred away from their portfolio.

If a property is not visible, contact your Contractor or Billing Company for help. For information on how to assign users as Readers to properties, see Manual Read Properties

Properties that are due are sorted under the Properties to Visit section. 



The color of the due date indicates its status:


The property is past the set due date, but still within the set grace period


The property is within the set due date


Properties not yet due are listed under the Upcoming Visits section. 


4. Select a property

Choose a property and select the sync icon  download-cloud.svg  to first update any new property information.



Once synced, Ready to Start will appear. Select the property to begin recording reads.


5. Record reads and photos

Once a property is selected, units and utilities for the property will be listed in the order in which they should be recorded.


Note: Route Order can be configured for a property on the NextCentury Web Portal.  This determines the order in which reads should be recorded. If no Route Order is set, one will be configured automatically based on the order in which the first reads are recorded. For information on configuring Route Order, see Manual Read Properties


The next utility read will always be shown at the top of the list under the Working On section. 



Select the utility icon  all-water-img.svg  and enter the read shown on the meter. Select Done when finished. 


Your device's camera will then open. Take a photo of the meter and select OK when done. The camera icon  camera.svg  can also be selected to take a photo.



Some units may have multiple utility types. Be sure to enter reads for all utilities by selecting each utility icon.


Utility types...

The NextCentury platform supports several utility types, each indicated with a different icon.




Cold Water


Hot Water 


 All Water


Commercial Water 









Unable to record a read...

Select Can't get a read? if unable to record a read.



Then select the corresponding reason.




Access Obstructed   

Something is blocking access to the meter

Tenant Refused Access   

The current resident will not allow you in the unit

Unable to Access   

  There is no way to reach the meter

Equipment Issue/Repair Needed   

Meter or other equipment damaged or faulty

Cannot Find Equipment   

Equipment is not where it should be and cannot be found

Missing Equipment    

The equipment has been removed or is missing

Unit is Closed   

Business/unit is closed and the meter is inaccessible


Use this feature if none of the above applies


Additional unit information can also be viewed by selecting View Details.



From the Unit Details page previous reads, notes, and other information can be seen. 



Reads can also be recorded from this page. After entering the read, select Next in the upper right-hand corner to advance to the next unit in the route.



Once a read is recorded, the utility icon will turn green indicating that that read has been recorded.


6. Sync reads

Once reads are recorded, they can be synced to the NextCentury Cloud. Select the sync icon  Group.svg  to upload recorded reads at any time. 


Once synced, a checkmark will appear next to the utility icon indicating that is has been saved to the NextCentury Cloud.



Recorded reads can also be synced from the Unit Details page by selecting the Sync Reads button.



Once all reads have been synced, a message will appear indicating that the property is now complete.


On the Meter Reader page,   completed properties will be moved to the Upcoming Visits section and display a green checkmark.