Right now, information technology is driving the world and there is hardly an area of life that is untouched by innovation.
Almost all the industries are experiencing the impact of innovation today, be it manufacturing, retail, automotive, healthcare, or education.
The utility sector is also undergoing a digital transformation as utility companies are relying greatly on IT for improving effectiveness, efficiency, and safety in their services.
They are leveraging smart technology solutions for several operations- all with the common objective of enhancing their services and the levels of customer satisfaction.
Here are some ways in which IT is all set to become a true game-changer for this sector.
Enhancing field operations
The use of IT in the utilities sector has always been focused on back-office transformation but the emphasis is now on enhancing the field operations.
For example, the use of connected devices is improving employee efficiency significantly as they enable collaboration and data sharing across locations.
Utility companies are harnessing data from these devices to improve the output and empower decision making with more reliable information.
Connecting the entire data sources
Utility companies have to handle a diverse set of connected devices spread over disparate locations.
Since they often come from different equipment providers, there is always a challenge of different communication protocols and proprietary data formats when it comes to gathering and utilizing data from them.
Technology enables utilities to consolidate data from the connected systems and devices and ingest it in a usable form.
Enabling customer self-service
Like any other domain, customer satisfaction is important for this industry as well. Customer self-services are a key requirement for utility providers and this is where IT helps.
There is specialized software for public utilities that allow the customers to access their accounts and get information related to their daily usage, billing history, payment notifications, bill payments and more.
While these information portals improve customer experiences, they reduce the workload of employees as well.
Facilitating consistent monitoring
The use of sensors is another example of the IT revolution for the utilities sector.
These smart sensors are capable of monitoring devices and issuing real-time alerts for engineers to resolve problems even before they arise.
Obviously, it leads to higher productivity, efficiency, and performance. At the same time, it is a clear advantage from the customer service perspective as well.
Customers can have predictive maintenance on their appliances even before any damage occurs.
It is clear that IT has huge potential for utilities but it is not confined to greater efficiency and better customer services only.
These benefits actually translate into extensive cost savings. For example, a customer self-service portal can reduce the dependence on human representatives and bring down the requirement of people in this role.
Similarly, predictive and preventive maintenance is another way businesses can unlock an opportunity for cutting down the maintenance costs in the long run.
Undoubtedly, harnessing technology and leveraging innovation for their business infrastructure is the smartest thing that utility companies can do.
Missing out on the latest digital tools, on the other hand, can put them far behind.