Report: Energy providers need to develop user-friendly billing models to remain competitive

As the energy commodity market continues to heat up, vendors are looking for new ways to gain a competitive advantage over rival providers. One of the most effective ways this can be accomplished is by implementing a billing system that makes it easier to interact with customers.

According to a new study by IDC Energy Insights, the global market for customer care and billing applications will generate nearly $914 million in revenue for 2012. The report noted that as the competition between energy providers increases, the market for these solutions will expand at a compound annual growth rate of nearly 8 percent through 2015.

“Overall, customer care and billing applications that can effectively support customer targeting and acquisition, provide rating and billing flexibility, enable converged and complex billing, excellent customer self service, provide quick and solid analytics following the entire contract-to-cash process and are smart meter ready will best serve competitive energy markets,” IDC Energy Insights executive Roberta Bigliani said.

Energy commodity vendors should think beyond billing to implement a subscription management billing platform, which will provide product and plan flexibility that will enable them to quickly and easily launch new offerings and expand into new markets, in addition to core billing functionality.