What factors are driving utility industry change? At the recent Siemens Smart Grid Software Leadership Conference I noticed five emerging themes:
1. Value comes from perfecting the consumer experience -- which is not just about their interactions with front-office service, but also the behind-the-scenes infrastructure supporting that experience.
2. Measuring value and performance. Increased access to data about all aspects of the utility business allows utilities to finely gauge performance and value. This, in turn, enables continuous improvement in the customer experience, as well as reductions in the cost of service.
3. New product/service focus. Today's regulated businesses should strive to create new products and services based on information technology coupled with new energy technology such as DG, energy management, storage and proactively press regulators to craft policy to facilitate their equitable delivery.
4. Seeing opportunity in change. Change is inevitable -- and utilities can get in front of it. Utilities can leverage smart grid solutions to offer consumers more value. And they know that Siemens is an experienced partner that they can trust to help navigate this wonderful and vital transformation.
5. Urgency. If not now, when will the utility industry adapt to address emerging needs and opportunities in a fast-changing energy landscape? Because if utilities don’t step up to this challenge, other players certainly will, and soon.
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