The Growing Demand for Supplier Consolidated Billing
Between state regulations and consumer demand, a new type of utility billing is rising to change the face of energy markets. Supplier consolidated billing (SCB) has been a popular topic amongst states and consumers for some time now. With supplier consolidated billing, consumers receive one utility bill with detailed generation and transmission charges from both their supplier and distributor and only one payment is expected.
For years, states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Maryland have been studying customer billing practices and participating in SCB pilot programs. In 2019, the state of Maryland implemented SCB to support a more competitive energy market and give retail electric and gas suppliers better control over their brand identity. Let’s explore the many benefits of SCB to the energy provider and consumer, and how these benefits can be realized.
The driving force behind supplier consolidated billing
Demand for supplier consolidated billing has increased over the years due to changes in regulations and interest from consumers to create a more competitive retail market. Not only does SCB streamline the billing process, but it also enables a better offering of products and services that will help both suppliers and consumers.
SCB gives consumers better control over utility usage and access to a larger variety of products and services.
Suppliers, in particular, would benefit from having direct access to their customers and establishing their brand identity with them. Under the more common utility consolidated billing (UCB) approach, suppliers have to limit their offerings, but with SCB, they’re able to offer additional products, services, and billing options – all within one bill. For consumers, SCB gives them greater visibility into what they’re being charged, better control over utility usage, and access to a larger variety of products and services that can best meet their needs.
So, what’s the holdup?
Consolidated billing can be complicated for many energy suppliers to implement. Suppliers are used to providing digital access to their own bills, but now they need to access bills from the distributor, and in some cases, even other utilities. Many are aiming to offer a competitive user experience, by creating an online portal where customers can see all of their utility bills in one place. Unfortunately, to access those bills for customers, it often involves manual work to request credentials, log in each month, and download those bills.
This streamlined approach can take the hardest step of implementing supplier consolidated billing off the provider’s hands.
That’s where automation can help. With integrations to over 6,500 utilities across the globe, Urjanet’s Utility Data Platform automatically retrieves bills from each provider’s website and delivers them on a monthly basis. This streamlined approach can take the hardest step of implementing supplier consolidated billing off the provider’s hands, so they can focus on delivering the best experience and results to customers.
Ready to learn more about how the Urjanet Utility Data Platform can help you streamline your billing experience? Speak with one of our data experts today.
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About Ma-Keba Frye
Ma-Keba Frye is a Content Marketing Associate at Urjanet, assisting with content development and execution. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading, listening to music, and volunteering.