The city with a resident population of about 140.000 inhabitants manages a network of educational and cultural institutions, such as kindergartens, schools, libraries and cultural amenities. The utility expenses incurred by the facilities constitute the second major driver of cost in the municipal budget. A continuous increase in the costs of heating, gas, electricity and water created a further incentive to look for cost-saving optimizations in the area of utility management.
In such a context, the aggregation of fragmented billing information and better visibility into utility usage / cost in the institutions managed would allow the municipality as well as the managers involved to monitor and compare the utility consumption patterns and costs, select the most cost-efficient tariffs offered by utility companies and prioritize investment projects (e.g. thermal efficiency improvement projects) with the best cost-to-benefit ratio in mind. The main challenge was to implement a software solution which would collect utility usage / cost data from the facilities managed and provide the managers with a comprehensive and insightful overview of the data processed; the managers would thus be equipped with the information needed to select the most economical tariff offerings and make impactful investment decisions with which to reduce the overall utility costs incurred by the city.
The client needed a software tool with which to effectively monitor and optimize the consumption and cost of utilities in the network of communal facilities managed. The system implemented enables the client to collect/import, process and visualize the utility data, analyse the latter as well as make sound cost and investment optimization decisions based on the analytics generated. Such utility usage and cost optimization decisions made for a large number of facilities aggregate into substantial savings at the municipal budget level.
The analytics generated with the software are also used to benchmark the properties managed - i.e. compare their utility performance - and thus encourage the managers and personnel to become aware of the room for improvements and optimizations in the way they manage the purchase of water, gas, electricity and heating. Most importantly, the managers can now better understand the specific characteristics of the properties they manage and are thus in a much better position to select the most cost-efficient tariff options offered by the utility companies, i.e. the tariff options (tariff parameters) which fit their specific property characteristics and the associated utility consumption patterns. The users can also be alerted to spot irregular utility usage patterns and thus identify potential sensor/device damage and/or emergencies. The system enables to aggregate the billing information in such a way that a large portion of data is imported automatically from the utility companies systems (e.g. Tauron, PWiK with Comarch’s ERP Egeria).
Last but not least, the municipality is now able to easily identify the facilities where improvement measures would have the greatest overall impact on a significant budgetary cost position. All in all, the client is enabled to realize substantial cost savings through a software solution with which to ensure an effective ongoing monitoring and optimization of utility costs incurred.