Gasversorgung Unterfranken GmbH

Better with Qlik: gasuf optimizes SAP IS-U data usage for billing and customer management

"By combining Qlik as a BI platform and adding microgeographic data to SAP IS-U data, we can now more easily gain comprehensive insights to improve customer loyalty, customer development and customer acquisition with targeted measures."

Michael Schmidt, Deputy Head of Service Team Customer Care at Gasversorgung Unterfranken GmbH

Company profile

Founded in 1964, Gasversorgung Unterfranken GmbH (gasuf), headquartered in Würzburg, today supplies natural gas to 73 towns and municipalities in the districts of Würzburg, Miltenberg, Aschaffenburg, Main-Spessart, Bad Kissingen, Kitzingen, Haßberge and Schweinfurt. Around 29,000 private households, industrial customers and heating plants are connected to a pipeline network of over 1,600 km and supplied with around 1,300 million kWh of gas annually. In addition, gasuf also supplies two natural gas filling stations in its supply area. Another business segment is the construction and operation of district heating networks - partly with renewable energy sources.

Challenge SAP IS-U data usage

The energy provider uses the industry software SAP for Utilities (SAP IS-U) for consumption billing. However, it has not yet been possible to use the data effectively and comprehensively outside the SAP system. "The previous procedure of making data available using manual SAP queries was time-consuming and required deep SAP knowledge," explains Michael Schmidt, Deputy Head of Service Team Customer Care, Gasversorgung Unterfranken GmbH. "We were looking for a way to make the data flexibly usable for the various requirements of the specialist departments".

The potential of the SAP data should be used better, especially for tasks in the billing area and for data-based customer management - particularly for customer loyalty, customer development and new customer acquisition.

COSMO CONSULT convinces with expertise

Michael Schmidt searched for an IT service provider to find a cost- and usage-efficient solution to improve the use of SAP IS-U data. Several times the tip came from industry circles to get COSMO CONSULT on board: The software provider specializes in the planning and realization of business intelligence projects. The range of services extends from analysis and consulting to the creation of the data model and application creation to service and support. In addition, COSMO CONSULT offers special solutions for various industries as well as SAP user companies, which were developed on the basis of the analysis and reporting software Qlik. "For us it was directly clear: COSMO CONSULT is the perfect partner", says Schmidt. "The team has comprehensive competences in the SAP environment, understands a lot of BI and is very experienced in projects in the energy sector."

Products for the energy industry

Standard analysis dashboards are available specifically for the energy industry for areas such as finance, customer loyalty and development, management, monitoring and data quality management. Business users can self-service access analyses and reports from SAP IS-U through an easy-to-use interface without IT support. Users can easily customize and extend the analyses themselves. A graphical visualization makes the query results easy to understand.

Within four weeks, the billing dashboard at gasuf went live, enabling the energy provider to detect missing reading orders or meter readings, for example. This was followed by the contract monitoring dashboard for mapping active or becoming active contracts and a dashboard for monitoring master data quality. In addition, gasuf maps customer-supplier change processes and evaluations in the field of receivables management using Qlik applications.

Data-based customer management with SAP and external data

One of the central goals of the introduction of Qlik as a Business Intelligence platform for gasuf is the optimization of customer management through the efficient use of data from SAP and additional external data. The gas supplier is supported by COSMO CONSULT and the marketing service provider panadress marketing intelligence, which specializes in dialogue and geomarketing. Initially, this service provided additional information to enrich the data on existing customers. Examples are sociodemographic data, information about the customers' living environment or their affinities (technology, ecology, DSL, fitness/wellness, customer cards, installment payments, etc.). This makes more in-depth data analyses possible - for example, to identify which other products or services would be of interest to the customer. Furthermore, the customer approach can be optimized by the targeted selection of relevant information and the selection of preferred communication channels.

Customers with change ambitions can be identified at an early stage and measures can be derived to keep the customer - for example with a better offer. To do this, the system compares a cancelor profile that contains various characteristics with existing customers and calculates a cancelor score for each customer. In addition, it is possible to monitor which measures, depending on the cancellation score, can be used to successfully prevent a customer change.

It is also possible to calculate the customer value or the customer potential in order to decide whether and to what extent customer loyalty measures make sense.
In addition, gasuf uses Qlik for marketing campaigns to win new customers. Contacts in relevant sales areas with the greatest potential for new customers are filtered out of a data pool and then specifically addressed.
Due to the improved analysis options with Qlik, gasuf is able to gain easier and more comprehensive customer insights and thus to ensure a higher customer satisfaction and a reduction of customer losses. At the same time, a more targeted and efficient development of existing customers and the acquisition of new ones is possible.

Future: Qlik will also be used in the future for analyzing data from the Core SAP system, for example for profitability analyses of projects.

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