- New law creates pressure for utilities to act
- Customers’ willingness to switch will increase
- New products will be in focus
(powercloud, Offenburg, June 21/2021) The complete liberalization of the Swiss electricity market is coming – and it is coming fast. Until now, only large customers with a consumption of more than 100,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year were free to choose their electricity supplier. In the near future, this will also apply to private households and small businesses in Switzerland, according to the planned “Federal Act on a Secure Power Supply with Renewable Energies,” which the Federal Council will decide on before the end of the year. In addition, Swiss policymakers expect the new law to strengthen decentralized power generation. For example, anyone who produces solar energy will be able to sell the surplus electricity in their neighborhood in the future. Local energy communities are simplified.
But what does the new law mean for the Swiss utilities? “We expect a development similar to that in other European countries with liberalized electricity markets,” explains Rob Wirz, Head of Digital Advisory Services at Eniwa AG. “On the one hand, the willingness of customers to switch is increasing dramatically due to online comparison options. On the other hand, new competitors are emerging on the market and focusing on digital channels and individual offers including cross-selling. Swiss utilities must prepare for this right away. The design of IT plays a critical role in this.”
A number of experts will be talking about this “IT preparation” on June 24 as part of a webinar organized by powercloud and Salesforce Switzerland Participants include Rob Wirz and Thomas Lüthyof Eniwa, Robert Haberof Accenture, Jan Marckhoffof BEN Energy, and Marco Beicht, CEO of powercloud. The focus is on the comprehensive digitization of the utilities as a basic condition for success, as Robert Haber emphasizes: “The pressure to act is high. While profit margins tend to decline in the utility business areas, a huge market for new product solutions is emerging, but these have to be individually adapted to the customers’ wishes. Innovative utility customer portals on the front end ensure a holistic customer journey and facilitate self-service. The back end must enable this development and simplify the associated billing.” In other words: Utilities need an all-around view of their customers and the innovative products to match. To achieve this, every interaction between sales and marketing must be perfected.
At the same time, the cost pressure is increasing – triggered by a stronger price war in the liberalized market. The main focus here is on the “cost to serve” (CtS). “Many utilities have too high CtS to generate sufficient revenue in the future,” explains Tobias Hirning, Head of Sales Consultings at powercloud. “However, these costs can be significantly reduced. The basic prerequisite for this are digitalized processes in the company that run automatically. This is exactly what we ensure with powercloud, which includes all business processes for the energy industry machine room – a reliable basis for billing electricity, gas, heat and water as well as products and services. New and innovative products can be developed and transferred to sales in a matter of hours. We will present the possibilities of such a cloud-based platform solution during the webinar.”
“Salesforce Switzerland is very aware of the challenges facing utilities in Switzerland and can thus provide support quickly with experience and out-of-the-box solutions. Working together with powercloud, we can quickly and efficiently support energy utilities in preparing for market liberalization and in their digital transformation,” says Anne Gottschalk, Senior Account Executive at Salesforce Switzerland.
About Salesforce Switzerland
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