The Funding Challenge Of the Water Industry, Just Look to Technology – Part I

Part I: How did we get here? This discussion of the challenges facing the water industry will be followed with “Part II”, which will provide insight on how technology can help meet these difficult challenges. The water supply industry is feeling the pressure of extensive infrastructure replacement needs, rising operations costs, declining average customer consumption, and fragmented water...

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Keeping Up with the Joneses: Can your Utility Meet Customer Payment Expectations?

In recent years utilities have dramatically increased payment channels offered to customers – from automated payments by phone, to kiosks, to 3rd party payment locations at convenience stores, utilities continue to invest in new payment channels. Realistic or not, utilities are forced to compete with payment experiences provided by Fortune 500 companies, who are known for 1-click payment...

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Potential Expansion of the 3.65 GHz Band: More Opportunity? More Risk?

The demand for wireless broadband has exploded in recent years, but what impact will this have on the energy and utility industry as it continues to build the critical infrastructure to efficiently, reliably, and safely run the grid? Some of this growth in wireless broadband has been driven by the desire for mobile data or internet access in regions not easily reached by copper or fiber...

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Four Things to Remember When Implementing a KPI Program for Utilities

“What gets measured gets done” has been attributed to Peter Drucker, Tom Peters, and Edward Deming. Regardless of who said it – it is correct – and metrics are the measures by which an organization assesses performance. An organization’s most important metrics are its Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs. Utilities, like any other business, utilize KPIs extensively. …

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Grading the Grid: What’s the true renewable tipping point?

If you were to plot U.S. renewable energy usage somewhere on the innovation adoption lifecycle, we’d still fall somewhere between the “Innovator” and “Early Adopter” phase. But with the cost of renewable energy dropping and the number of business and consumer distributed generation installations rising, a renewables-majority isn’t far off. For utilities, an operational change will be...

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Building Loyalty One Customer Experience At A Time – Part II

Other brands could learn a lot from the customer engagement DirecTV exhibited during their difficult and challenging outage of the Viacom programming a few weeks ago (see Part I of this post). They have created a loyal following of “Raving Fans” due to their commitment to Customer Engagement, providing a reliable product and high quality programming at a reasonable (though not the...

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Maine Ruling on Opt Out Puts the Focus on Health Issues Again

The policy developments on the AMI Opt Out front continue to heat up, and what is particularly interesting is the sharp contrast among how various state regulatory and legislative bodies are interpreting and / or ruling on the health issue of smart meters. The big event in the last week was the finding by Maine Supreme Court, which ruled that the Maine Public Utilities Commission did not...

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