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Long-standing commercial ADR customer makes the smart move

Installation of smart meters provides major supplier with insight into customer water use

Smart meters for a smart city

A non-profit organisation in the water and wastewater industry, with over 500,000 connections, made the decision to install 4,000 smart meters across Auckland as part of their commitment to improving the services they offer their commercial high-use customers.

ADR's relationship with the organisation goes back over 40 years. From the beginning, ADR were supplying and reading basic mechanical meters for the organisation, but in March 2021 ADR kicked off the smart meter project. The smart meters were intended for commercial customers and schools as a cost-efficient, sustainable solution for meter reading, identifying leakage, and lowering water usage and costs.

Smart water meters are a form of IoT, a network of technologies which can monitor the status of physical objects, capture meaningful data, and communicate that data over a wireless network to a software application for analysis on a computer in the cloud. A smart meter harnesses technology to monitor water usage remotely and identify and fix faults faster.

ADR procured and installed the equipment, and with our web portal already in operation, the process was swift and easy. Once each smart meter was installed, the system was ready to monitor it. The portal also allows customers to see at a glance the level of their usage - how much they're using and when - rather than simply being presented with a bill for it based on a reading.

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The smart way to troubleshoot water issues

As part of the project, ADR worked with the organisation's customer care team, showing them how the smart meter solution could be used to troubleshoot problems. Smart meters provide data and factual information that's used to facilitate meter readings, so we were able to educate them on how the portal works, why certain behaviours occur, and what the potential causes of issues could be. This meant that the customer care team had at their fingertips the necessary information that could be relayed to any customers who had queries about their readings, and the ability to offer advice around how to resolve issues or problems.

What this has done is elevate the customer experience for the organisation's high-users, as they're now able to use data and facts to make decisions around their future water use.

 

Web portal provides transparency into water meter data for customers

Part of the smart metering solution is analytics. Each individual customer can set their own alerts and access their own data via the web portal. For example, if a large factory customer with 2-3 meters can issue portal logins to their staff. Typically, Finance and Operations teams would be most interested in the analytics the smart meter solution can provide, because they can view all activity and analyse the data, helping them to make better decisions around water use. The factory will benefit from:

  • Very granular historical data, read at 15 minute intervals and supplied on a daily basis
  • The ability to set their own thresholds and alerts
  • Accurate reporting

The solution also provides a great deal of flexibility. For example, existing meters can also be 'made smart' by attaching a smart device, which means they'll realise the same benefits from these effective and accurate measuring devices.

 

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image001 (15)Peak values = 15min data and cumulative = daily consumption

 

Improved customer relations

Now that the organisation is able to provide its customers with transparency around their water use, they're building more positive relationships with their customers. What we've done is deliver to the organisation the tools it needs to explain water usage and anomalies to their customers. When they query their bills, the organisation is able to provide visual data that shows them at a glance exactly how they're using water.

This takes the heat out of what could potentially be a negative conversation, because it's no longer about opinion - facts are facts. And the customer care team can then offer practical advice about how to reduce water usage, leading to a change in customer behaviour and ultimately, lower bills.

ADR's smart meters can help improve the service and experience you offer to your commercial customers. Let's talk.

Water conservation drives Dunedin City Council metering technology partnership with ADR

The DCC is the first council in New Zealand to upgrade 100% of their commercial customers to smart meters. Learn how they’ve improved the efficiency of the water network, helping to conserve water and increase sustainability.

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