Oracle Industry Connect—Orlando, Fla.—Apr 13, 2016: Utilities are faced with a rapidly changing industry and increasing expectations from their customers. Adapting to these factors requires a mature, flexible, and highly-scalable customer information system, designed to improve customer service and enhance financial performance. Oracle today announced that Tucson Electric Power (TEP)—which delivers safe, reliable power to more than 414,000 customers in the Tucson metropolitan area—upgraded its customer information system in its commitment to provide superior customer service.
By working with Cognizant and Origin Consulting to upgrade to Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.4 Service Pack Two, TEP is able to further leverage its existing Oracle investment as well as ensure compatibility with its enterprise software, including its meter data management system—ultimately enabling the utility to save money and provide enhanced customer service.
With the upgraded Oracle solution, TEP realized additional cost savings. The utility reduced the average call handling time by 10 seconds, received new postal discounts by implementing mail stream for customer letters, and increased operational efficiency. Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.4 also enhanced TEP’s visibility of business performance and operations through solution features such as an intuitive user interface, online help, and complete and immediate access to customer account histories.
Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.4 also helped TEP improve IT efficiencies. TEP shortened batch billing performance by 15 to 20 minutes, reduced night-batch processing time on an average of 20 minutes, and reduced batch aborts by 25 percent, resulting in timely revenue flow. The utility also reduced storage costs and improved database performance. Immediately upon go live, TEP processed 800,000 billing records and generated 30,000 bills with zero differences; validated and matched critical month-end reports; and received zero calls to the help desk during first couple of weeks post-cutover.
“We wanted to implement a solution that would improve security for sensitive data, automate manual business processes, and decrease system maintenance costs. We partnered with Cognizant and Origin Consulting to upgrade to Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.4 because it meets all our goals and more,” said Ramon Vazquez, IT customer applications supervisor, Tucson Electric Power.
Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.4 enabled more than 50 new features for the utility, including meter-to-cash analytical reporting and report standardization, leveraging integration with Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition.
The Oracle solution also included encryption features that enabled the utility to reduce risk by allowing it to encrypt sensitive data, like social security numbers.
“Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing meets the express needs of a customer-centric business strategy,” said Rodger Smith, senior vice president and general manager, Oracle Utilities. “Tucson Electric Power was able to quickly and seamlessly upgrade to the latest version of the Oracle solution to take advantage of new functionality that helps improve the customer experience and streamline operations.”
Tucson Electric Power worked with Cognizant and Origin Consulting on the system upgrade. Cognizant and Origin Consulting are Platinum-level members of Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN). Oracle Black Belt was also involved for fine tuning of batch billing and was available during Cutover.
“Changing customer behaviors and new technologies are creating new opportunities for customer engagement and transformation of customer service,” said John Gustafson, Vice President and Business Unit Head – Energy and Utilities, Cognizant. “We worked closely with TEP from discovery, design, and development to testing, cutover, and warranty—to help ensure the utility could realize results immediately and continue to maintain a positive customer experience.”