Energy and utilities providers currently face a number of tough challenges: ongoing deregulation driving up competition between providers, ever-escalating customer expectations and broader scrutiny into green credentials.
With all of this going on, providers need to ensure that they are not just fit for the future, but for the present.
Properly future-proofed energy and utilities providers are going to be the ones that digitize effectively. We're witnessing a global race, across every market, on every continent, to reinvent industries and economies to become digital-first, which in turn is forcing businesses to re-evaluate what they are selling, and who they are selling to.
But digitization is set to have a particularly profound effect on energy and utilities providers, with prominent management consulting firm Kearney even recently going so far as to say that the sector is “on the verge of the biggest technological transformation since 1880”.
A dramatic claim, but in light of the challenges mentioned above, not as far-fetched as you might think.
This transformation is largely going to be driven by the expectations of the emerging cohort of customers: digital natives, who are accustomed to managing everything in their consumer and business lives - from retail to banking to health and fitness to telecommunications - conveniently through user-friendly self-service portals.
Their choices are more driven by moral concerns than older generations, as Deloitte found after investigating their consumer attitudes in the wake of Covid:
“28% of all respondents said they’ve started or deepened their consumer relationships with businesses whose products and services benefit the environment. Conversely, about the same number have stopped or lessened relationships with organizations whose offerings they see as harming the planet.”
To promote a deeper consumer relationship with environmentally-conscious customers, providers need to give them easy visibility of - and control over - their energy usage, allow them to tailor their consumption to their own specifications, and begin to expand the range of products and tools that they offer.
Beyond the energy itself, customers are concerned about the things that energy powers, as well as the degree of visibility and control over usage they have.
Providers of the energy that powers their appliances are well positioned to also provide the appliances themselves, from refrigerators and boilers to thermostats, smart meters and more.
Whether that’s through convenient self-service, or guiding customer agents and field personnel by giving them all the information they need to make tailored recommendations for customers.
Satisfying these new demands is a win-win scenario. Deeper and more trusting consumer relationships with customers, and new revenue streams for providers to explore.
To deliver on these promises, energy and utility provider require a technology platform that seamlessly connects the entire customer journey.: from launching new offerings, to managing sales, appointments, quotes and the fulfillment of your products and services. All while providing the single source of truth and full audit trail required for regulatory compliance.