Transforming the Utilities Industry Through Digital Technologies

December, 2022

Electric, gas, and water utilities are facing regulatory pressures. For example, governments expect gas and electric utilities to support global sustainability and energy transition goals. They also require water utilities to ensure water quality and availability. While an increasing number of electrical customers also become energy producers, their expectations have changed. Furthermore, utilities are facing growing challenges in terms of skilled worker shortages, high investment and maintenance costs, and heavy asset losses due to the rising number of natural disasters. To address these issues, utilities globally are investing in digital technologies to transform their day-to-day operations, enable predictive maintenance, reduce human dependency, automate repetitive and tedious tasks, and reduce costs.

These emerging trends are covered in Avasant’s Utilities Digital Services 2022–2023 RadarView™. The report is a comprehensive study of digital service providers in the utilities industry, including top trends, analysis, and recommendations. It takes a close look at the leaders, innovators, disruptors, and challengers in this market.

Avasant evaluated 29 providers using three dimensions: practice maturity, investments and innovation, and partner ecosystem. Of the 29 providers, we recognized 17 that brought the most value to the market during the past 12 months.

The report recognizes service providers in four categories:

    • Leaders: Accenture, Capgemini, Cognizant, HCL, Infosys, and Wipro
    • Innovators: Atos, TCS, and Tech Mahindra
    • Disruptors: CGI, Fujitsu, IBM, and SAP
    • Challengers: Birlasoft, DXC, Hitachi Vantara, and LTI

Figure 1 below from the full report illustrates these categories:

MoneyShot Utilities Digital Services 2022 2023 1030x687 - Transforming the Utilities Industry Through Digital Technologies

“Utilities are under huge regulatory pressure to accelerate their energy transition journey despite difficult geopolitical situations,” said Robert Joslin, Avasant partner. “Enterprises need to invest in industry-specific platforms and new-age technologies to transform operations, optimize energy use, and deliver proactive services.”

The full report provides a number of findings, including the following:

    1. Global utility majors are accelerating the integration of digital technologies in energy storage, EV charging, and energy monitoring to respond to new regulations on decarbonization.
    2. Enterprises are strengthening their predictive capabilities to deliver use cases such as load forecasting, weather prediction, vegetation management, and pipeline leakage prediction by investing in technologies like AI, ML, and analytics.
    3. Businesses are reevaluating their workforce strategies by automating routine tasks, retraining and upskilling employees, and making investments in workplace safety for workers in hazardous locations.
    4. Companies are improving customer experience by enabling real-time insights about energy and water usage, providing billing and maintenance services for prosumers, and implementing immersive technologies for customer support and complaint management.

“Predictive technologies and the sustainability push are some of the key themes disrupting the utilities sector,” said Praveen Kona, associate research director with Avasant. “Services like weather forecasting, load estimation, and energy optimization require enterprises to invest in IoT sensors, AI, ML, and advanced analytics.”

The full report also features detailed profiles of 17 service providers, along with their solutions, offerings, and experience in assisting utilities companies in digital transformation.

This Research Byte is a brief overview of the Avasant Utilities Digital Services 2022–2023 RadarView™ (click for pricing).