For some of us, energy is a fascinating category. It’s volatile, inextricably linked with politics and a peculiar mix of free-market economics and politburo style regulation. For everyone else it is so painful it triggers a hate response. We explore the pain points and suggest some fixes.
Why is it so painful?
For most inputs a simple invoice: “Qty Price/unit =$x,xxx.xx +GST”, is matched against a purchase order and paid away. Simple. Now compare that with no purchase order and a 24 line-item bill, including time-based energy charges, “pass-through” poles and wires charges, metering charges, 2 or 3 different environmental charges, market charges – the list goes on.
Add to that the fact that not all retailers supply nationwide – indeed many retailers specialize. Multiply that by tens or hundreds of outlets across 9 different jurisdictions and compound that with retailer biller problems and you have a potential nightmare on your hands.
If you have ever asked for a spend report and wondered why it took quite so long or why you have ended up with an out-of-the-market 3-year contract, data is at the root cause. Prospective clients complain:
“I can’t see my data!” and
“I hate this category, I just want it solved”
Of course, the two go hand in hand.
Why is automation essential?
Unless your data is comprehensive and up to date you are not in control. And if you are not in control, you will always be on the back foot – dealing with suppliers, negotiating new supplies, keeping on top of cashflow.
Control can be delivered through a consultant with a spreadsheet – it’s expensive and risky and you might usefully wonder who actually is in control at this point.
By automating data acquisition, workflow, analytics, and reporting, control is within reach, enabling you to be proactive with existing suppliers and fast and flexible in seizing market opportunities.
Where to start
No need to reinvent the wheel. Bill Identity’s automation platform is deployed quickly without disruption. If you don’t feel like you are fully in control of your energy spend, we should talk.