In this session Dinesh Prasad, Head of Utility Analytics at EXL, talks about the definition of big data and how that can be a value driver for analytics retailers. Big data is a term that describes the large volume of data – both structured and unstructured – that inundates a business on a day-to-day basis. Typical characteristics are volume, variety and velocity of data that gets generated. It provides an opportunity to a utility retailer company to differentiate themselves in the marketplace and gain business advantage to manage growth in a competitive data rich environment.
Increasing volatility, complexities in decision making and demanding customers in utilities will make adoption of advanced data analytics inevitable for its players. Strong data infrastructure is a necessary pre-requisite for it. Utilities organizations face many challenges when it comes to managing big data, but the most difficult ones seem to be internal like the requirement of an overall strategy and framework with significant involvement from business and heavy reliance on IT teams. Seamless Database migration from legacy systems to big data infrastructure is essential to enhance efficiency and to facilitate advanced analytics. Powered with a robust data infrastructure, utilities need to start their journey from capability development in analytics to making it integral to business for decision making.
Utility retailer companies can derive immense benefits immediately for cost optimization, portfolio growth and customer experience enhancements. In the big data scenario, at a broad level they can be categorized around delivering evolving Customer Experience effectively, enhanced Financial and Operations efficiency and overall Utility value chain improvement through data sharing and collaboration. Dinesh presents an example of use of big data where EXL developed algorithms to detect anomalies in Smart Meter data stream that was implemented for the real-time visualization for action.
In order to fully leverage Big Data, Utilities need to design a consolidated organization wide roadmap, driven by top leadership, where planned change of data, business processes and analytics need to be undertaken basis their potential value realization to deliver to short and long term business strategy.