EnergyCAP’s Utility Bill Audits Continue to Deliver Value

Dave Ulmer - September 1, 2021
EnergyCAP DNA

Validating utility bills for accuracy is core to EnergyCAP’s DNA. We’ve been doing it for four decades—providing flexible bill auditing tools and ways for customers to quickly identify and report on billing errors. Our auditing tools have helped identify unusual billing activity and charges, leading to millions in customer refunds due to vendor billing errors.

Two years ago this month, EnergyCAP introduced an entirely new bill verification and auditing system in its latest platform—EnergyCAP Version 7. The redesigned process focused on making verifying bills smarter, easier, and friendlier by automatically performing validation and flagging problematic bills as soon as they were entered into EnergyCAP. Our goal was to reduce the amount of setup and management needed by applying “smarter” auditing that produced fewer false positives and required little to no setup. We also made it easy to assign problematic bills to team members for additional review and analysis.

Based on customer feedback and two years of actual results, it’s clear that EnergyCAP is making a significant impact on identifying utility bill issues. Here are a few highlights:

  • On average, EnergyCAP has flagged 1 out of every 16 customer bills as a possible issue.
  • Many issues are due to bill processing errors—missing bills from vendors, multiple bills sent for the same period, and even duplicate bills getting processed.
  • Close to 100,000 duplicate bills have been flagged, avoiding downstream errors and possibly overpayment to vendors.
  • Customers were alerted to over 35,000 cases of systemic estimated bills—getting ahead of metering and billing issues.
  • Fifty-five percent (55%) of flagged bills resulted in action by our customers.
  • Over $166 million of flagged bills were voided, demonstrating cases where customers found problematic bills and were able to cancel the bills before affecting accounts payable and reporting processes.

While we’ve been pleased with the adoption of our new auditing system, we didn’t stop there. In May, EnergyCAP announced an even more sophisticated auditing engine to identify use, cost, and demand outliers. Using quadradic regression based on actual weather values and historic performance, EnergyCAP introduced automatic outlier analysis for daily use, cost, and demand values. Instead of using percentage-based limits or thresholds, EnergyCAP evaluates each bill against historic performance and seasonal weather data to determine how much each bill deviates from its expected values.

This advanced outlier analysis is already paying dividends for our customers. Over the past four months…

  • EnergyCAP has flagged 5,000 demand outlier bills, 17,000 use outlier bills, and 21,000 cost outlier bills.
  • Over 575 customer organizations have been notified about outlier bills.
  • Flagged outlier bills have a value of more than $126 million during just the first four months of analysis.

But wait, there’s more…our team continues to make EnergyCAP smarter, easier, and friendlier. In addition to the new outlier analysis, we also rolled out a collection of auditing updates based on customer feedback: automatically assign flagged bills to specific employees for review based on audit type, ignore specific audits based on the value of each bill, disable audits for specific accounts (e.g., infrequent delivery accounts), easily find problematic bills with new bill list filtering options, and audit bills that you generate as part of your chargeback process.

EnergyCAP’s audits are making a difference every day! We’re proud of how we’re already helping our customers save time and money with our advanced auditing capabilities, and we’re excited to continue partnering with them to make EnergyCAP even better.

Topics: Software Features- Company News

Dave Ulmer

About the Author
Dave Ulmer

Dave Ulmer is Vice President and Chief Product Officer at EnergyCAP, LLC and serves as an Adjunct Instructor at Penn State University’s College of Information Sciences & Technology.

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