Advantage Utilities is a London-based energy consultancy that provides cost effective energy solutions to businesses and public sector organisations. The company doesn’t just offer the ‘best price at the right time’ but rather a complete utility solution. It is this added value service and Advantage’s ability to cut through the often complex world of energy that has secured businesses across a wide variety of industry sectors.
Aside from energy, Advantage’s clients also benefit from its in-house water audit service, expert waste management advice and telecom contract negotiations.
Reducing costs is at the heart of what Advantage offers its customers and in an area that is highly competitive this brings its own challenges. Daniel Cousins, Senior Analyst at the company explains, “The biggest issue that we are frequently faced with is the fact that many of our clients don’t understand the Meter Operator contracts they are on and typically renew their contracts with their existing providers without actually understanding the costs and implications.”
Leading the Way
“In order for us to gain greater insight into energy usage we needed to work with a partner that could install our client’s meters, collect the data and aggregate the information. We reviewed the market and shortlisted three companies, but chose IMServ, the UK’s largest independent energy management provider, because we felt they could deliver a much smoother end to end procurement and energy management service,” explains Daniel.
IMServ works closely with many FTSE 250 organisations and companies within the commercial and industrial sectors, advising on effective energy management solutions. The company offers a range of monitoring, visualisation and control services that allow businesses to gain greater insight into their water and electricity usage.
Daniel continued, “IMServ has an established reputation in the industry, is completely independent and is also one of the few licensed data aggregators in the UK. It was a good decision. We have now been working with IMServ for over five years and have built up a great working relationship. The company is easy to deal with, flexible, and very good at what they do. Our account management team at IMServ are also knowledgeable and very nimble at providing a first class service and critically, at offering us very competitive prices.”
IMServ provides Advantages’ customers with all aspects of energy management and utilities from MOP/DC/DA contracts to bill validation. This ability to see and analyse energy consumption data is a powerful tool in the customer relationship. Being able to complete end to end metering enables Advantage to help reduce its customer’s energy consumption.
As Daniel explains, even a basic energy management policy can help reduce consumption by up to 10% and a lot of the work can be carried out in the background by Advantage. “Our objective is to simplify every aspect of managing energy data and transform it into meaningful information. Managing energy has always been a complex business, but today it’s even more so; from energy contract renewals, carbon reduction programmes, and CRC to validating invoices, setting budgets, calculating accruals and AMR – having an experienced partner like IMServ is essential.”
“Eliminating estimated energy billing and meter reading costs alone can see cost benefits range from 3-15% of energy costs/supply point,” according to Daniel.
Fast data turnaround
“Probably one of the most important benefits of working with IMServ is being able to access Day +1 Data and having that information within 24 hours. The speed at which IMServ can drill down on the data it collects is impressive and its online portal, Energy DataVision, gives us a seamless process from collection right through to the visuals on our EDV screen.”
Armed with the Half Hourly Data information obtained from AMR, Advantage can work with its clients to look at both behavioural and structural changes that can be implemented to start making energy reductions. “Installing advanced meters offers numerous benefits for customers, from the easy integration of energy selling between the customer and the energy company, and greater flexibility for tariffs, to more variety of payment options, including the ability to use pre-payment on energy bills to help customers manage their finances more effectively,” concluded Daniel.