Guest Post: Best Practices for Managing Technological Change in the Utility Industry
The water utility industry is slow in its adoption of technology. But change the industry must. The new type of consumer demands it (push) and it is what technology wants (pull). Caught in the middle of this push and pull is a cadre of management that is struggling with understanding who the new consumer is and is hampered by the bureaucracy and hierarchical decision-making process in an environment where speed is crucial. Centralized decision making in a networked world is a recipe for continued failure to serve customers optimally. What does suboptimal customer service look like? In the water industry, it is poor quality water and in the power industry, it is a failure to move quickly to sustainable sources of electricity. Built on a premise that the utility’s role was to provide stable service reliably and, safely, the utility system (and the industry), has failed to adapt to a time where the consumer’s definition of service has grown exponentially.
Also published on Medium.