How might we improve the experience of applying for and installing a smart meter?
Improvement of the net effort for requesting and installing smart meters and increment of successful instalments by 40%
A more effective process for installing smart meters
Improving the flow of changing from an old energy meter to a smart* one was a priority for Liander. The current process was complex and time and cost-consuming for both parties: if the customer wanted to switch meters, they would have to request it or wait for Liander to approach them.
Additionally, one of the biggest pains in the customer journey was managing the installation time with the technicians and the need for more awareness of its possibilities.
The outcome was an improved website for requesting a smart meter, including an online planning solution that made requesting and installing smart meters more effective for both technicians and customers. This was reflected in a boost of successful installations by 40%, meaning an increase from 5 to 7 installations a day per technician in the first year.
By testing and developing three innovations in this process, technicians worked more efficiently; clients would make their own appointment and send pictures of the distribution box situation beforehand to make instalments easier and prevent time-consuming situations, and pay previous to the service. Consequently, improving the Net Effort Score significantly.
This short-term progress was also beneficial for Liander to follow government legislation regarding energy meters. By the time the project started, the government had plans to slowly convert all households from a ‘traditional’ meter to a smart one. Still, since there was already a demand from the customer side, they were able to tackle this change earlier in the process.
* A smart meter is an energy meter that automatically sends your meter readings to Liander, who then forwards this to your energy supplier without requiring your intervention
From in-site empathising to successful smart meter installations
In this project, the team went through the first part of the Koos approach – Understand and Imagine.
We started with explorative research, conducting in-depth contextual interviews and service safari through self-observation, looking for the essential needs, activities and customer pains as input for the current customer journey.
By mapping out the current experience in an explanatory visual, we got an overview of insights. For customers, the critical moment in requesting a smart meter is the consideration phase. Also, we found that the intrinsic motivation to request a smart meter via a priority placement was the environment, money saving or a combination of them. We used this customer journey to improve and digitise the experience from a customer perspective.
We designed the ideal customer experience using a co-creation session, in which we devised ideas based on the current situation. The concepts were prioritised and merged during an assessment into the desired customer experience.
The next step was diving into the UX Design Sprint, where we worked the digital application process to a working prototype in a sprint. Employing a prototype, we tested the three service innovations and the expected value for the customer.
Afterwards, the team presented Liander a report consisting of a visual summary of the process and the outcomes, which was transferred to the organisation for further development.
Fun and passionate people who guide and execute a creative process in a result-oriented way.
The brainpower behind this project
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