Most things were better than last year

Charlie Taylor

Industry in transition: This is required for partnership with the new electricity customer

Published: June 22, 2022, 3:10 p.m.Winter electricity prices have, to say the least, made consumers pay attention to their electricity bills. Now the electricity companies must show customers that they offer something more than just an invoice, and there are mainly five areas required to create a partnership with the new electricity customer.Read more about what it takes to become the electricity supplier of the future There is a lot of electricity on the agenda right now. After a winter of record high electricity prices, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has put the knife to the throat of European energy use, while the climate crisis demands a shift from fossil fuels in every industry, from transport to steel production. takes place widely throughout society, states Fredrik Engdar, head of the energy business area at Accenture. – Above all, we see that customers, regardless of whether they are private customers or corporate customers, today make completely different demands on their electricity supplier than they have done before.Fredrik Engdar, responsible for the energy business area at Accenture.Fredrik Engdar, responsible for the energy business area at Accenture. The report “The New Energy Consumer” from Accenture states that the relationship between customer and electricity supplier was previously in principle transaction-based. Electricity came from two holes in the wall, the bill was paid, no one thought about it more than that. – But both the high electricity price we see now and the high awareness that exists about sustainability has changed this significantly. The end customer today wants to be involved and contribute to the energy conversion by buying greener electricity, but they also want help from the electricity companies to streamline their own electricity consumption.

Change of perspective on a large scale

And this puts the electricity companies facing a change of perspective on a large scale. Not least, it requires a new perspective on what really creates value for both themselves, and for the customer. According to the report, there are mainly five areas that electricity companies need to consider in order to create an emotional, rather than transaction-based, relationship with their customers: Purpose, Products, Technology Platforms, Talent and Partnership. – All these five are equally important, but to have a ambitious and genuine purpose filled with real content rather than phrases is the basis. The purpose should then be to drive action, because it is undoubtedly the case that customers and companies want to buy services and products from companies that contribute to the transition around sustainability. It is with a clear purpose that companies can find the direction to develop new products and technical platforms, it is with a clear purpose they can attract employees and customers, and it is with a clear purpose they find the partnerships that will be crucial to become an important player, not only in the electricity market, but in the energy transition that is now taking place throughout society. And here Fredrik Engdar sees that the Swedish companies are well located. – Many Swedish electricity companies are already far ahead, because they know what they want to achieve and they seem to be genuine in their desire to get there. Now it is time to take the next step and continue to drive the transformation towards a sustainable society.The report also shows that consumers want help to adjust their energy consumption themselves. Partly through advice and tips, partly also through new products and environmentally friendly alternatives. – The Swedish companies are well placed when it comes to offering green electricity, but then they need to help customers in their conversion and streamline electricity use. To achieve this, both greater insight into customers’ behavior and needs is needed, as well as new types of products.

New forms of partnership

Another important aspect of the transition is new forms of partnership to change energy use in close collaboration with corporate customers and other players in the market. – Partnership is a matter of the heart for me. The energy transition has already led to completely new kinds of cross-border collaborations between industries that we have not seen so often before. For example, furniture companies that sell solar panels, fast food chains that become charging stations for electric cars, oil companies that buy power companies – the combinations are many, sometimes surprising and occur everywhere. – It is the increasing customer insight, and self-insight, that is behind it. Companies realize that they cannot do everything themselves, but that they must enter into partnerships both with players in other industries and with fast, digital startups that can help develop new capabilities and speed up the energy transition. These constellations will be crucial in order to be relevant in the new energy market.Read more about the electricity industry’s transformation

FACTS

25 percent – so many electricity companies say that their inability to formulate a purpose that engages customers is an obstacle to developing the customer offering.78 percent – so many electricity companies state that those companies that fail to help their customers to net-zero emissions with the help of greener products and offers will lag behind.64 percent – so many electricity companies feel that it is challenging to find the balance between profitability and transforming the customer experience. The article is produced by Brand Studio in collaboration with Accenture and not an article by Dagens industri

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