Data Mining and Warehousing: Many utilities have no ability to turn raw customer information into significant insights about their business.
The customer-information system (CIS) is the system of record for both customer and meter data, and in combination with asset databases, these information repositories comprise the lifeblood of every utility. They usually are not tuned for analysis or for easy reporting, so a single view of the customer and the business processes surrounding the customer does not exist in most of the systems in use today. Many utilities, as a result, are data rich but information poor. Enter the Data Warehouse.
In the utility industry's brave new world of deregulation, information technology (IT) (em and, specifically, "outsourcing" (em has acquired an entirely new meaning.
IT has become strategic. And important. So important that utility companies are seeking outside expertise to help them leverage technology to conduct business more efficiently, help grow revenues, and hone their edge in the new competitive world. Time has become an unaffordable luxury.
As competitive pressures push utilities to look for new ways to do business, outsourcing the information technology (IT) function becomes increasingly attractive. By contracting for outside IT services, utilities can reduce costs and increase efficiency.
The decision to outsource, however, now goes beyond cost-cutting considerations. Companies are just as likely to turn to outsourcing when they want to concentrate on new business opportunities or dramatically change their overall structure.
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