A perfect synchronization across business processes is essential to ensure great company results. However, the complexity of this synchronization increases as new applications are required to support business initiatives. Discover how Open Smartflex helps utilities simplify their IT ecosystem, implement new technologies, and modify their processes, at a lower TCO.
Smart meters support a wide range of capabilities that help utilities manage their commercial and operational processes more proactively. As smart meters provide more information regarding the service and the meter, utilities can act more promptly and prevent issues that affect customer experience and the company’s revenue.
Taking full advantage of smart meters’ capabilities requires synchronization among several systems. In other words, utilities must heavily work on configurations and integrations to enable these systems to communicate and exchange accurate information. For instance, when a customer requests a service connection with a TOU rate plan, the Customer Information System (CIS) will orchestrate the tasks to deliver the service. As part of the process, the CIS will create orders for a field crew to install the smart meter. Once the field crew has completed the work, the Mobile Workforce Management System (MWMS) will inform the CIS that the meter was installed. However, it will also be necessary to notify the Meter Data Management System (MDM) that a smart meter is now actively running and specify which data it should collect based on the product offer. Finally, the MDM should notify the required device settings to the head end system so that it can measure the service using the right conditions.
For meter read data collection, utilities must keep at least three systems connected: the CIS, the MDM, and the head-end system. The head-end system is in charge of requesting the expected information from the meter. However, the MDM must be aware of the data it will receive and the validations, estimations, editions, and billing determinant calculations that need to be executed. Finally, the CIS collects the data required to bill the customer from the MDM . Poor integration between these systems leads to delayed and inaccurate bills, among other issues.
The complexity of the required synchronizations increases as the company starts using more capabilities or involving other activities like claim management, outage analysis, and customer self-service management. Given this issue, Open has designed a holistic solution, Open Smartflex, that helps utilities synchronize multiple business processes using an all-in-one system, minimizing friction and reducing time-to-value when implementing new capabilities. By implementing Open Smartflex, utility companies turn this:
Open Smartflex has been built based on world-class Customer Information System requirements and strengthened with features that help digitalize other essential areas of the business, such as Meter Data Management, Mobile Workforce, Customer Relationship & Self-Service Management, Workflow Automation, and Dashboards. Open Smartflex’s holistic design supports the entire business cycle of utility customers with less integrations, no duplicate information, and no inconsistencies compared with traditional solutions.
As a result, utilities can have peace of mind when orchestrating their business processes, as the information needed is always up-to-date, accurate, and reliable. By reducing the complexity of the IT ecosystem, utilities can focus on things that truly matter: the delivery of new products and services, customer experience improvements, and operational efficiency.
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