ISON Technologies: Delivering Excellent User Experience Through Unified Customer Care And Billing Systems

CIO Vendor India today is backed with technology-led disruptions, According to the 2018 United Nations World Water development report, around 6 billion people will suffer from clean water scarcity by 2025. Urbanization and industrialization are the major factors driving the water scarcity. In Saudi Arabia - one of the largest and most arid countries in the Middle East, the water resources are limited, due to the low rainfall, making groundwater resources the major water supply sources. Most of this groundwater is however, fossil water with apparently little recharge taking place at the present day. Therefore, the National Water Company (NWC), Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, embarked upon a strategic initiative to radically streamline, rationalize and improve its Kingdom wide Water distribution Services to manage and sustain Kingdom's natural water resources efficiently with enhanced experience of its services to customers. The company not only intended to enhance the performance of the entire Kingdom in line with the international best practices in areas of Water Demand and Quality Management, Customer Service, Business process and Organization Functions but it also intended to enhance the customer experience to end consumers as well.

Hence, it was not an easy endeavor for NWC as the geography covered in this program was across 2.15 million km², with more than 2 million customers registered within the billing system. Moreover, the current distribution entities were segregated into directorates that were operating on various types of systems and business processes for several years, leading to the non-standardization of service delivery and customer experience, making it even more complicated. Therefore, NWC was looking for a solution provider who would understand the requirements and magnitude of the programme completely before designing the solution, as it was a nationwide transformation of Business and technical processes.

This is when NWC partnered with iSON Technologies, a leading customer experience management solution provider and IT implementation Services provider in Africa and the Middle East regions. Perfectly understanding the requirements, iSON helped NWC achieve a unification of its customer care and billing system across the 13 directorates completely integrated with customer and user experience systems. “We believed that we could help NWC accomplish this project by implementing a solution that is built using our innovative value proposition, technical solution, competitive price and most importantly the sustainable strategic approach,” says Rahul Srivastava, CEO of iSON Technologies.

Detailed Impact Assessment
Leveraging its extensive utility industry expertise, iSON brought in business consulting right from the project’s inception to solution design, customization, and implementation and change management. The company conducted a detailed impact assessment and discovery before the execution of the program. iSON planned the CC&B Rollout program execution approach in four waves comprising Wave 1 for Baseline Implementation with standard process in one Directorate, Wave 2 for Rollout in 3 Directorate with delta enhancement of Features, Wave 3 for Rollout in additional 4 Directorate with delta enhancement of Features, Wave 4 for Rollout in additional 4 Directorate with delta enhancement of Features, over a duration of 9 months.
Collaborative and Unique Program Management approach
iSON-GTS established a collaborative and unique program management approach with a comprehensive set of activities and resource mapping along with the project documentation that comprised project deliverable templates, resources timelines etc. This innovative disruption included several project and program management models that were tailored to achieve the requested timelines within stringent quality control, which made NWC achieve a unification of its customer care and billing system across the 13 directorates that was completely integrated with customer and user experience systems. The final solution provided by iSON comprised of the Oracle customer care and billing, AMR, Payment portal, customer portal, IVR, Customers mobile application, ERP Integration, ECM and Field Services Mobile Apps with some of the key benefits such as Synchronization of Smart Meter Reads with Billing system (Automation of reading, Digital billing & Improved billing accuracy), Digitized customer management, Enhanced customer experience, mobility (Ease of access Better user experience) and overall better reporting experience.

Amit Chakravarty, Vice-President, Strategy,
Governance & Systems and a member of
Ministerial Board, National Water Company, KSA

“While our global delivery model and flexible resourcing ensured that the solution was cost effective, our Oracle CC&B Center of Excellence (CoE) ensured that we delivered a best-in-class solution with first time right approach,” affirms Rahul Srivastava. “In addition to this, the Active and effective stakeholder involvement and communication ensured program success, making it a unique example of collaborative and cohesive approach between the customer and the Partner with common objective of enhancing customer experience,” he concludes.

A Remarkable and Unique Initiative
“To have a unified Customer Experience in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: a geographically spread country of 33 million people residing in disparate terrains under multiple categories of water consumption was a significant challenge. To bring together 8 different systems to interface with a core Oracle Customer Care and Billing System bearing legacy of 5 different technical outlay with differing levels of people and process maturity, was a high aspiration. To do this within a year was bordering on audacity. But this dream was achieved through an innovative and unique program design incorporating elements of Design Thinking, Agile methodology, devolved PDCA coupled with infusion of emotional intelligence within people and process dimensions. Coupled with high doses of hard and focused work brought a seemingly impossible program live in style. The program began from 7 branches of operation and now services 150 plus branches, reaching out to close to 2 Million premise connections.

A remarkable, unique and marquee initiative indeed! We are told this has been one-of-its-kind by global standards,” testifies Amit Chakravarty, Vice-President, Strategy, Governance & Systems and a member of Ministerial Board, National Water Company, KSA.