AI and data analytics will allow the utility firms to optimize the management of customer data and connect with the customers at a deeper level.
FREMONT, CA: Public utility companies have failed in maintaining customer experience levels. The inability to live up to the customers’ expectations can be partly attributed to the lack of competition in the sector. However, there is another aspect to it too. Public utility companies had conventionally utilized the legacy systems that are slow and lack the efficiency required to meet the current service demands. Utility companies that are eyeing to address the above issue need to prepare themselves on two aspects: Innovation and advanced analytics solutions. While there are various new technologies that can add value to the utility sector, artificial intelligence (AI) stands out among the other technologies due to its ability to access and extract relevant customer-centric trends. Here are the primary ways in which AI and analytics can improve customer experience in utilities.
AI can utilize historical utility data to identify patterns throughout the varying data sets. The insights will enable the utility providers to offer users with customized messages and offers. Thus, AI has immense potential to boost personalization in the utility sector. Utilities can further enhance customer experience through automated contact centers that will ease the pressure on the agents. Many of the redundant customer queries can be addressed by bots programmed to comprehend natural language processing. For instance, when consumers don’t receive bills on time, they get worried. And when they begin to call the utility company to complain, it incr
eases the call volumes significantly. An AI-enabled bot can address the complaining customers and provide them with e-bills on their personal e-mail ids.
AI can also predict consumption in the future based on historical data usages. Utility companies can notify consumers to take remedial measures. For instance, AI-based notifications can enable customers to observe and improve their power consumption practices consciously. AI solutions can assist the agents for customer calls proactively. For instance, knowing when a customer might call, based on consumption patterns, past habits, call records, and payment histories can help the customer service agents to anticipate customer calls. Such predictive information offers agents a chance to either prepare for calls or to proactively deal with the likely issues.
Data analytics is another aspect that can enable utility companies to assess their performance and ultimately contribute to customer experience. Advanced data analytics can propel utilities to increase capital productivity and save huge sums in maintenance and operations expenditures. Advanced analytics solutions can help the utility firms to optimize capital deployment by analyzing the risks involved in the business. Analytics can also improve reliability in utilities by making accurate predictions about when to replace a failing device. It can significantly reduce outages, thereby impacting the customer experience. Customers can be communicated about their utility service usage behaviors. Based on the feedback from the service provider, customers can optimize their energy consumption. It will result in reduced energy wastes and enable the customers to feel more engaged with their utility service providers.
Analytics solutions can also be combined with technologies such as big data to capture the utility data in a comprehensive way. Improved data collection and analysis will streamline a utility firm’s processes, thereby enabling the firm to offer better customer service. Moreover, it’s possible to connect with customers through various channels. An advanced analytics solution captures and analyzes customer data from multiple sources, including social media sites. Based on the insights, utility companies can connect with their customers on an interpersonal level. An informed customer is more likely to stay loyal to the service provider than an uninformed one.
Thus, data analytics and AI incorporations can significantly boost the overall customer experience. As other utility players emerge, the public utility sector will have to focus on customer-centric enhancements in order to sustain in the current market space.