ATLANTA, GA– March 09, 2017– SmartGridCIS recently added three retail energy providers (REPs) to its growing roster of customers in Texas, ranging from established, publicly held energy companies to start-ups entering the deregulated market for the first time.
GridLink CIS is a cloud-based billing and CIS solution designed specifically for smart meter environments. The software delivers benefits specific to REPs including the ability to bill customers more frequently, more accurately, and with more flexible rates and products including true smart meter enabled billing options. REPs will find it easier to leverage these products, with built-in promotional capabilities, to attract and retain customers.
“The bottom line is that the retail energy market in Texas is extremely competitive and every advantage REPs can get to acquire and retain customers is critical,” says John Bastian, president of SmartGridCIS. “Customers usually don’t associate energy bills with a positive experience. But what if they could choose when to receive their bill? What if they saw rewards grow every time they paid their bill? What if they could choose a rate product that suits their lifestyle? SmartGrid gives retailers an edge with a comprehensive billing and promotions engine that lets them offer customers more choices, so paying the bill is a more convenient and possibly rewarding experience.”
GridLink CIS provides REPs with a compelling advantage in the back-office, too. The forward-thinking API allows them to easily integrate the software to support both smart meter and transactional EDI data without needing significant customization. “We hear from our customers time and again that their legacy systems can’t support smart meter data. With GridLink CIS, they can use a single platform that supports interval and EDI data, for both traditional postpaid or prepaid energy billing,” notes Bastian.
Another benefit of GridLink CIS is its flexibility, which allows REPs to customize communication and billing options to meet the preferences of the growing millennial population in Texas. “Census data shows that the millennial population is growing faster in some Texas metros than almost anywhere in the country, so it’s an important market. At the same time, the way millennials want to do business is a departure from a traditional utility relationship, so REPs need to offer choices that meet millennials’ expectations,” explains Bastian. These options include:
Pick Your Pay Date – Millennials are the best educated generation to date, but their earning power doesn’t match up. Lower salaries and higher student debt make budgeting difficult. Allowing customers to choose when they want to be billed, whether once per month on a certain date or multiple times per month, makes it easier to manage payments.
Two-Way SMS Chat – More and more millennials want to communicate with brands and service providers via chat because they don’t have to use a separate service or app to communicate, and they get a swift response and resolution. Most billing providers only offer SMS alerts or bill pay rather than two-way chat.
Prepaid Billing – With more than one-third of millennials using prepaid cards to manage their spending, prepaid is becoming mainstream and is no longer the last resort for accounts with a bad payment history or considered a credit risk. GridLink CIS lets REPs offer both prepaid and postpaid billing from the same platform, along with online portals, alerts and payment options so consumers can customize their account to their preferences.
SmartGridCIS provides energy billing and CIS solutions for regulated utility companies and deregulated retail energy providers (REPs) that want to leverage a smart metering infrastructure.
SmartGridCIS blends energy consulting, application development, implementation and support expertise to help utilities and REPs improve performance, strengthen competitive advantage, minimize back office costs, accelerate cash flow and achieve measurable ROI.