Think some energy consumers are simply too hard for your business to reach? Flux’s new FlexiBill product can help you reach and retain new customers, no matter how detailed their needs.
In a competitive industry evolving at a fast pace, one way for businesses to thrive and prosper is to chase new leads and new markets. That’s all well and good if the needs of those leads are easy to identify and serve, but breaking new ground in the energy sector can be daunting. The pace of change, particularly around technology and the growth of distributed energy resources, means retailers need to be nimble, accurate and forward-thinking. That’s particularly true if they want to make inroads into the Commercial and Industrial (C&I) space, which consumes large volumes of energy and where customers have an extensive range of needs. Energy retailers with legacy systems may look at the requirements of this sector, such as seamless integration, easy configurability and renewable energy purchase enablement, and walk away. But the ones who are committed to powering the future of their businesses will recognise the benefits of connecting to the future.
What makes Commercial & Industrial customers hard to reach and serve?
While the C&I label makes them sound like a homogenous group with much in common, the reality is quite different. C&I customers have a broad spectrum of needs that reflect the spectrum of ways in which they use energy. The energy use and needs of a small manufacturing business, for example, are quite different to those of a large retail establishment with operations in different geographical areas. Customers in this group often have multiple connections, lots of users and a mix of meter types that can be spread across numerous locations. The price of the energy they use is negotiated at ICP level, with a complex system of distribution network tariffs.
Add in that some of these customers will also generate energy, and the picture starts to look increasingly complicated. Not surprisingly, they have incredibly complex billing needs that make them notoriously difficult for retailers to serve. C&I customers traditionally fall into the too-hard-basket for many retailers, but it doesn’t have to be this way.
How can FlexiBill simplify serving these customers?
Staying ahead of the game in energy retail comes down to providing customers a consistent and seamless experience, whatever their needs. That’s even more important when the customers use and generate large volumes of energy and have a variety of intricate metering configurations. FlexiBill not only makes reaching the C&I market possible, but also simplifies serving it. With Flux’s help, retailers can rapidly provide new offerings or scenarios to C&I customers, whatever their needs. In turn, they’ll benefit from faster service times, great operator interactions, and a suite of modern consumer experiences designed to exceed customer expectations.
How does FlexiBill work?
With FlexiBill, retailers can manage all the complexities of a rapidly changing energy market, because the product itself is designed to grow and change. Putting configurability in place of customisation means FlexiBill is future-proofed and can flex with business’ needs. It enables retailers to automatically bill any tariff and price any plan, whether they apply to one connection or many. Using it means retailers can move faster and price smarter, with an end to laborious re-modelling and uploading of changes. Through smart integration, FlexiBill can either be deployed in parallel with retailers’ existing infrastructure, or as a system replacement.
Using a cloud-based delivery model (Flux is powered by AWS) allows for continuous, efficient and low-risk product improvements; scaling up is simple and low-cost. New offerings are easy to launch: Flux’s sophisticated test environment allows for pre-production exploration and innovation without risks to the live app. Retailers can safely test new prices and propositions without fear of breaking current billing systems. A high level of security is assured: Flux is ISO 27001-certified, which means all its products comply with a globally-recognised information security standard. All testing is carried out within a safe and secure environment.
FlexiBill is designed with the end customer in mind. Its automated data validation means more accurate reconciliation as well as reduced errors, debt and billing exceptions. It doesn’t generate a bill until validation has been run, and creates meaningful and straightforward bills.
Flux understands the pain points for energy retailers aiming to explore new territory with new market growth and customer acquisition. It recognises the importance of reducing cost-to-serve and of getting smart with data. If you’re serious about serving C&I customers, Flux is serious about removing the barriers to help make it happen. And it might just be simpler than you think.