The adoption of technology and additional payment channels has certainly changed the way utilities companies operate throughout the decades. However, one constant has remained over the years – the push to reduce Day Sales Outstanding (DSO). That is, to cut the average number of days it takes a utilities provider to collect payment after an invoice has been posted. There are a few strategies utilities companies can incorporate into their existing operations to help in the reduction of DSO.

  1. Give your customers plenty of options. The most effective strategy for reducing DSO is to give customers variety when it comes to payment channels. By incorporating multiple options for making payments, like pay-by-text or mobile payments, customers will adopt to their preferred method which will help lead to a reduction in DSO.
  2. Push for recurring payments. While cutting DSO will always be a focus for utilities companies, the adoption of e-billing and recurring payments is also a priority. The push for customers to enroll in e-billing is often done in tandem with informing them about recurring payments – both of which result in savings for the utilities provider by reducing costs spent on sending out paper bills and cutting Day Sales Outstanding.
  3. Go mobile. Mobile capability is no longer a nice-to-have. Consumers expect to have the option to make a payment while on the go from their smart device. By introducing multi-functional mobile capabilities, customers will be able to manage their account and process payments from any location. This flexibility will aid in a reduction of DSO.
  4. Rethink how you use notifications. A recent trend among utilities companies over the past few years is the adoption of email notifications. In the past, notifications were used only to communicate disruption in service. Recently, utilities companies have utilized notifications beyond outages to include bills and payment options. Research has proven that by implementing a proactive model where the utilities provider pushes out a notification at the same time as an e-bill is sent, customer will pay bills faster as compared to when they are contacted by a singular method.

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