Since October 2020, the application process for electricity, gas, water and broadband connections at LeineNetz GmbH, headquartered in Neustadt am Rübenberge, has been completely digital: After entering data via a web portal, the customer automatically receives an offer that he can accept electronically and commission LeineNetz GmbH. The network and energy service provider has now transferred the software solution from its local servers to a SaaS solution from the ISO-certified data center of digitization specialist SoftProject GmbH. This enables LeineNetz GmbH to offer its customers even faster processing and location- and time-independent services, while at the same time reducing operating costs. SoftProject offers ready-to-use industry solutions based on the X4 Suite digitization platform and manages the administration, maintenance and updates of the software.

Speeds up processes and increases customer satisfaction: the customer portal for service connections

“In the medium term, we plan to digitize 90 to 95 percent of our core processes,” says Thomas Reimann, Head of Corporate Development & Digitization and authorized signatory of LeineNetz GmbH. “SaaS offers us the opportunity to respond flexibly to the increasing demand for software resources and to take full advantage of cloud-based web applications. With SoftProject’s low-code digitization platform X4 Suite as a cloud enabler and central system, we can implement all our digitization projects flexibly and quickly.” In addition to the automated application and ordering processes already implemented, this also includes the control of service providers, such as installers or civil engineers. “The digital network connection process involves much more than a web portal through which customers can enter application information,” explains Uwe Jeschke, Division Manager for Industry and Utilities at SoftProject GmbH. “For us, the data received is only the basis for subsequent digital processes.”

Digital solutions relieve the burden on customers, employees and service providers

Customers apply for grid connections to the typical lines of electricity, gas and water, but broadband or telecommunications connections as well as EEG installations and wallboxes are also possible. The data entered in the web portal is recorded, validated and checked for completeness by the system. This cuts manual, error-prone and time-consuming work – clerks do no longer need to scan documents or make follow-up phone calls if some information is missing. Incoming applications for network connection are automatically forwarded to the relevant department, where they are checked for technical accuracy by the responsible persons via a clerk portal. Around 90 percent of the applications are for standard connections, for which a quotation is prepared within a few minutes. However, special requirements for dimensions or special cable routing can also be noted before the quotation is automatically generated and sent to the customer. With the current update, customers now receive offers for the grid connection application directly in the customer portal. There, they can log in, check offers and accept the offer with two clicks to directly commission LeineNetz GmbH.

Next step: Automated service provider control

In addition to the portal and self-service solutions already implemented for customers and clerks, LeineNetz GmbH and SoftProject GmbH are working on a web app for service provider control. This is intended to replace telephone orders and paper formats – routing slips or handwritten logs and documentation – and e-mail attachments by automating order placement without media discontinuity. At the same time, service providers on site – for example, an installer installing an electricity meter or a civil engineer digging a pipe or cable trench – have the option of taking photos with their smartphone or tablet as proof of documentation and uploading them directly to the utility’s system. The entire process runs automatically and without any loss of time, and no longer needs to be controlled and followed up manually.

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