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In our last article on the SAP Cloud for Utilities Co-Innovation Group, nicole.huth covered our first event, the founding and launch of our joint activities in Heidelberg. In October, the initial event was followed by the kicked off our workstreams together with Accenture and our co-innovation customers in Kronberg. Three days full of interesting discussions, exchanges and insights into the future business needs of utilities and how we can solve them together.

With this article I would like to give those who could not participate the opportunity to get an insight into the workstreams of our event.

The workshop was opened by Klaus Lohnert, Program Director SAP Cloud for Utilities, and Prof. Dr. Alexander Zeier, Chief Technology Officer of SAP Business Group at Accenture. Together they summarized the opportunities and background of the investment in SAP Cloud for Utilities. If you are interested in the context, I recommend you to read alena_05 interview with Stefan Engelhardt, Lead Solution Owner, to better understand how to benefit from SAP Cloud for Utilities. In the following video Axel Memminger, Lead Product Owner, explains deployment options, its development journey and how you can co-innovate with SAP.

With this background information, the participants dived into the different workstreams. The work in the individual workstreams was completed by joint sessions, e.g. on the how to support the business transformation, key performance indicator based steering model and ideas for a radical, simplified new pricing model. You will certainly hear more about this at a later date.

However, I don't want to anticipate too much. The focus of my post will be on the different workstreams. The allocation to the different workstreams was done following the interests and needs of the co-innovation customers and the required skill sets, so the right people were in place. We followed the process of the co-innovation development. Therefore, in this kick-off workshop, we focused on the scope definition and developed a common view on prioritizing these business requirements.

We are currently concentrating on retail-specific processes from lead to cash. I would like to take this opportunity to give you a brief insight into the work of the various workstreams. Our co-innovation group has decided to address these processes in seven workstreams. These workstreams will evolve and adapt over time and expand to further topics, such as for example asset management, depending on the needs of the group.

  • Product Definition & Marketing
    Accelerate time-to-market for new energy products, physical products, services and bundle them into attractive customer solutions. ​Gain insights into your customers' needs and preferences and deliver personalized customer experiences

  • Selling
    Define the next generation selling solution for Utilities who are eager to grow their business towards multi-service providers in omni-channel mode.

  • Order Fulfillment
    Ensure an effective order fulfillment for the products and services sold in omni-channel mode to B2C customers. This includes the order related process steps between selling to the customer and billing: e.g. hardware has to be shipped, services have to be managed and conducted by technicians, subscriptions and commodity contracts have to be activated - and the status has to be monitored.

  • Billing & Revenue Management
    Specify a streamlined and highly automatized billing & invoicing solution to in order to capture usage streams​, rate the customers usage​, generate consistent invoice​s, manage in- and outgoing payments​, and secure revenue streams for all kind of products – from commodity to non-commodity

  • Customer Services
    Create a unified and efficient service experience. Bridge the gap between front-office engagements and back-office processes.

  • Market Communication
    Define a common model / platform across countries for the communication exchange processes between market participants in deregulated countries / regions.​

  • Architecture & Integration
    Focuses on both, the end to end Business Process Scenarios (including integration) and Architecture (technical and non-functional) aspects of Cloud for Utilities.

We are pleased about the positive feedback from the participants. The group liked the open spirit and discussions with us and their peers. We are looking forward to the next ones. Thank you very much for your constructive feedback to find the best possible solution together!

But let’s the participants speak for themselves:

"The open discussions we had with SAP and the other customers it was a lot of fun."

"The expectation... the first one the biggest one was does everyone see the same things we see or are we alone. No we are not alone. That's a good feeling. We have get the right people to discuss our needs, solutions, capabilities and I'm happy to look forward to the next steps."

"I hope we can do the same kind of workshops the next time. It's very open in discussions, solutions, needs and there's no no go something like that."

"I like the peer sharing, so then for the next session if we can have more energy companies from different markets to join and have dedicated sessions with different market participants that's really helpful."

"I think co-innovation is great, is wonderful, I think that's an approach that we can use not only for this industry, that I would highly recommend to everyone."

You are not a member of the co-innovation group? If your company would like to participate in our next workshop and become part of the co-innovation group, please contact our co-innovation lead Henrik Ostermann.

Best regards,

Tobias Steckenborn
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