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Utility Billing Software: Your Surprising Advocate

By Kevin Raasch

If you’re like utility managers at most organizations, utility billing is the bane of your existence. 

Manually collecting energy use data and accurately billing customers is a constant headache – and incredibly time-consuming.

Manual and home-grown energy management systems are cumbersome and error-prone. It’s tough to analyze usage patterns – especially by building – with a manual system.

While a frustrating task, management of utility bills is critical. Utilities are an enormous line item in your budget. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that higher education spends $14 billion annually on energy.

Without a software system for managing utility billing...

Most institutions are left with complicated home-grown systems that operate in an information silo.

This all sounds pretty dismal. But, there is hope. With utility billing software, you can accurately collect utility and energy use data, manage your billing process, remove information silos, and slash the time spent on billing processes.

Let’s take a look at a real-life example of the transformative power of utility billing software.

University of Utah – renewed through utility billing and energy management software.

Without a software system for managing utility billing, the University of Utah relied on home-grown solutions to track energy usage. This resulted in slow, inaccurate billing processes and mounting frustration for the staff.

Before implementing utility billing software at the University of Utah, Business Systems Analyst Rich Miller explained: “We are always about a month behind on billing because it is such a manual process.” Collecting usage data and distributing utility costs was a time consuming and error-prone process.

 

Enter utility billing software

After implementing utility billing software as part of the University’s energy management system, the organization began to experience significant improvements within their organization.

The University of Utah used to manually read 300 utility meters, which took the better part of each month, leaving them a month behind in billing. According to Miller, the month-long process of reading the meters has now been cut down to just two days.“This month-long process has been cut down to two days.” Digital meter readings eliminate manual labor, improve accuracy and provide more actionable data for decision making.

Energy managers no longer have to deal with complex meter hierarchies or accounting schemas to track the distribution and recovery of costs. Utility billing and energy management software has facilitated the automated allocation and distribution of costs.

By combining utility costs and maintenance expenses to pass along to the departments, energy utility billing software made it easy for finance managers to recover costs through flexible, rules-based invoice generation.

Additional improvements seen by implementing utility billing software at University of Utah include:

  • Improved efficiency
  • Digitalization of manual processes
  • Increased accuracy
  • Actionable data for better decisions

With energy management and utility billing software, you can experience success like the University of Utah at your organization.

The benefits of utility billing software and energy management software were many. This begins with the ability to replace spreadsheets, and home-grown, siloed systems that aren’t part of an IWMS. With energy management software, utility managers benefit from reduced complexity and increased efficiency. This is accomplished through a truly integrated solution, automatic accuracy checks, and configurable data validation.

Tags: Energy Management, Utility Bill Allocation, Energy Management Software

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