The Evolving CustomerJanuary 12th, 2017 by Matthew Ross
In this blog entry we hear about the evolving customer and dive into ways to provide maximum choice, flexibility & value to the next generation of energy users.
What does the next generation want?
The purchasing power of millennials is rapidly growing and having a large influence on multiple industries. The use of new technology is a consistent theme among millennials – often with the end goal of making their lives easier and more convenient. Their relationship with energy is no different and has serious implications on the way energy is used and delivered.
The next generation will view distributed energy resources (DERs) and IoT devices as standard household products: Smart Thermostats, Solar Panels, Batteries, EVs, etc. will continue to increase in adoption and impact the behavior of the grid.
This new customer group also extends to business users. Commercial and industrial sites – whether run by millennials or not – will search for energy providers that deliever the most value to their business. They will also have access to new technology that increases efficiency and lowers their bills.
So how do energy companies provide the greatest value to this evolving customer base?
We often ask our utility and retail customers, what if energy was free? How would your business survive?
Judging by the responses, this concept is not farfetched but an entirely plausible reality in our lifetime.
Service > Electrons
Even if electrons themselves are free, the way in which they are transported is still a valuable service that customers will continue to pay for. The most valuable service is one that enables customers to utilize their desired energy content at the right moment with the greatest reliability. Renewable content, location sourced and power quality will also influence the price of energy and allow customers to choose energy solutions that fit their requirements and lifestyle.
Lastly, the service must be bidirectional to keep pace with the growth of generation and storage assets at homes and businesses. We must evolve to an active and dynamic grid that intelligently reacts to the distributed resources of micro-grids and two-way power flows in real-time.
Becoming Context Aware
The traditional way to understand your customers and the grid is by analyzing historical usage data. No matter what analytical tools or techniques are utilized, this process fails to understand the context under which that usage occurred.
How was the weather that day? Were there any special events? What are the characteristics of that customer or the site itself?
If we ignore this context, we miss valuable information that can influence how utilities and retailers should interact with their customers.
Energyworx captures the value of this data diversity by tagging it to the customer’s usage data, allowing utilities to make real-time, context enriched decisions, when and where they’re needed.
Utilities, businesses, and consumers don’t need more data. They need the right data, and they need it at the right time. By making it context aware, we can live up to the choice, flexibility and value that the next generation of customers are demanding.
Are you ready for the evolving customer? Contact us to see how Scalable Context Enriched Energy Intelligence can improve how you deliver value to your customers.