Technology is being used to enhance every physical and intellectual process both on business and domestic levels. Every technologist and businessman is searching new applications for emerging technologies such as cloud, big data, and IoT. Undeniably, these applications are increasing and our lives are being transformed every passing moment. However, leveraging new technologies in favor of the environment can be considered among the noblest businesses.
A few years ago, Deepak Garg, a successful entrepreneur realized how rapidly the world was evolving into a technology-driven world, but alongside the impact on the environment was being ignored. This propelled him to conceptualize and establish Smart Energy Water—a company with a vision to leverage technology to address the global challenges of energy and water sustainability—in 2012.
About the Company
Smart Energy Water (SEW) addresses the key challenges of electric, water, and gas utilities by providing the best digital customer engagement, mobile workforce and smart analytics cloud platforms. They help their clients to improve operational efficiencies and deliver the best customer experience. Their platform has been deployed in more than hundred (100+) major global energy and water utilities across different geographies.
The technology provider brings best practices for utilities seeking to elevate their customer engagement game with energy-saving tools and customer-centric data, offering digital customer mobile applications to enable bill paying, customer onboarding, track energy and water use consumption, and embracing social media channels like Twitter and Facebook to gain valuable and timely feedback via real time two-way communication. Through their top-notch solution, the company has helped global utilities in areas of customer/citizen engagement, demand response management, outage management, energy efficiency and water conservation.
Smart Cloud Solutions for Utilities
Deepak and his team focuses on providing the utility industry with the most comprehensive and best-in-class cloud platforms for utilities, their workforce, and end-customers. By leveraging various technologies such as cloud, mobility, big data and analytics, machine learning and Internet of Things, SEW facilitates digital transformation of utilities while helping them mitigate industry challenges such as meeting increasing customer expectations, ageing infrastructure & assets, lack of skilled workforce, increased competition, stricter government mandates for energy efficiency and water conservation and rapidly evolving customer expectations.
The suite of cloud solutions includes: –
Smart Customer Mobile (SCM®)
The #1 Digital Customer Engagement Mobile and Portal Platform
SCM® is an award-winning web and mobile platform with self service capabilities for utility customers, enabling real-time, two-way communication between the utility and its customers.
Smart Mobile Workforce (SMW®)
#1 Mobile Workforce Engagement Platform
SMW® helps utilities improve productivity and efficiency of field personnel by providing them job, safety and asset related information in real-time on any mobile device including smartphones and tablets.
Smart iQ™ – Energy & Water
#1 Energy and Water Analytics Platform
SiQ® is a Cloud analytics platform with built-in customer and operational analytics. The platform provides real time data analysis on Peak Load Management, Leakage Analytics, Customer Segmentation, Energy Efficiency, Water Conservation and Performance Evaluation.
An Entrepreneur with A Noble Vision
Deepak Garg founded Smart Energy Water with a noble vision and as the Founder and Chairman of the company, he is responsible for the innovation, vision, strategy, and leadership at SEW. Deepak is an industry stalwart with rich professional and academic background. He has earned MS in Computer Science with a Bachelor’s degree in engineering. He has also successfully completed a course in executive management from the Stanford Graduate Business School & MIT. Deepak has held several senior executive positions with Fortune 500 companies focused in technology, and, energy & utilities. During his stint with these multinationals, he successfully developed new direct and indirect market business solutions that resulted in rapid growth while adding $500+ millions to the companies’ growth.
He has built a high-powered business and technology teams that have successfully developed the SEW platforms addressing Energy & Utility industry’s key challenges related to Customer Outreach, Energy Efficiency, Demand Response, Smart Grid Reliability, Work Efficiency, Field Mobility and Big Data.
Deepak is actively involved in every aspect of product innovation at SEW—be that ideation, development, quality, implementation and post deployment stakeholder management. Therefore, he has redefined innovation at SEW in the true sense – optimizing it beyond products, making it holistic and inclusive of customer-centricity, pricing models, creative marketing, unique customer experience and an assiduous focus on client feedback.
The reason Deepak opted for this business is to become a part of the ecosystem and be able to drive real change. When the idea of SEW was born, all Deepak had was the desire and the vision to leverage technology to transform the world we live in. His focus has been on delivering innovative solutions and value-added services to SEW’s utility clients that can help them in their journey of digital transformation. For the end consumers, Deepak wants to offer user-friendly, intuitive platforms that empower them by giving self-service capabilities. With the smart global energy and water platforms, he wanted to revolutionize the way the world approaches energy and water sustainability.
Factors that Resulted into Mesmerizing Success
SEW has many success stories in different geographies where they have delivered quantifiable benefits and business outcomes to their utility clients. One of the major factors behind their success has been their innovative approach to the problems. “Innovation is paramount to our existence and technology is the greatest enabler that helps us developed solutions which address real world problems while creating a positive impact on the environment we live in,” asserts Deepak. SEW follows a unique customer centric approach with a mature and robust program governance framework that serves as an accelerator for successful launch of any project/ program or initiative and ensuring its timely completion.
Technical and domain expertise (utility industry), best industry practices, innovation and a highly experienced and skilled team aligned with the organization’s vision are some of the key factors that play a decisive role in SEW’s success.
Furthermore, customer service is an integral part of the company’s brand promise and the team aim to deliver best-in-class customer oriented services to their utility clients. This utility solution provider is a house for the seasoned experts from the utility industry with technical expertise and novel approach to resolve utility customer engagement challenges with fresh ideas. These experts envision developing customer-centric solutions and services for their clients that also empower the end-consumers.
Through its platforms the team at SEW aims to facilitate a collaborative partnership between utility and its customers, motivating the latter to change their consumption behavior, thus working together to achieve energy sustainability and water conservation. The selection of tools and technology along with the evolution of business processes enables the most successful program. This had helped SEW in not only delivering successful project deployments, but, the innovation and product excellence has also been recognized by the industry.
Smart Energy Water, the leading cloud based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform has successfully delivered its customer engagement platform to large, mid, and small sized utilities globally and won various accolades for delivering service excellence through their cloud platforms. To name a few— SAP recognized one of their largest water client, a leading utility in North Virginia for best mobility implementation for SEW’s award-winning customer engagement. In 2016, SEW was recognized amongst the ‘Top Technology company’ by ACG Orange County. Recently, SEW was also awarded for delivering best innovation in customer engagement 2017.
Creating a “People First” Working Environment
The greatest asset of any organization is the people working for it. The management at SEW strives to create a culture that contributes to a positive work environment. They believe in shared values and standards that result in high employee satisfaction. They have hard working teams who dedicatedly work towards achieving a common goal of energy and water sustainability.
Giving employees a feeling of belonging, commitment and creating such an image of an organization that others want to join demonstrates the ability to be innovative, new and forward thinking. With great minds, team expertise and experience; SEW works towards an effective employee engagement strategy that is innovative and employee driven.
To meet the company’s overall objective, HR team at SEW looks for likeminded people who fit the culture and have personalities that align with the company’s core values, mission and vision. They realize and know the importance of their teams as their brand ambassadors and takes a “people first” approach at a level that keeps them engaged and enthusiastic about taking care of the company’s customers.
Future Challenges for Smart Energy Water
The team at SEW believes in the ideology of embracing change and tackling every challenge as a new opportunity. Thus, product innovation and development remains a key focus area for them. The company has a huge target of helping 7 billion customers by providing them an energy and water sustainable future using the most advanced technologies.
The utility industry is undergoing rapid transformation; thus, it is a strategic imperative for SEW to align their vision, innovation and platforms with the latest technological advancements to stay relevant in the industry. Artificial intelligence, cyber security, robotics, wearables are some of the upcoming trends that will redefine innovation for the utility industry in the near future. According to a survey, 80% of the companies believe that AI is crucial to future business, while the majority of the companies are focusing extensively on establishing the right network to combat any security breach.
Referring to the future strategies of the company, Deepak says, “SEW is driven by a vision to help revolutionize the way the world approaches energy efficiency and water conservation. Thus, we are continuously working to deliver innovative solutions to help utilities in their digital transformation while contributing to global sustainability. Further, as a part of our long-term strategy, we also look forward to strengthening our partner eco-system to build upon our delivery capabilities and be able to leverage opportunities in new avenues.”
Founder’s Advice to the Younger Generation
As aforementioned, Deepak has held several senior executive positions with Fortune 500 companies and developed business solutions that resulted in rapid growth while adding $500+ millions of dollars to the companies’ growth. When asked to give some advice to the aspiring businessmen, Deepak asserts, “Read a lot, build new skills and competencies, go out in the field, reach out to different people, interact with end customers, and most importantly don’t be afraid to ask for help. The more knowledge you seek, the better equipped you would be to face professional and personal challenges head-on. While it is important to have the grit to succeed; but you should have the self-discipline to be persistent to sail through. One last and the most important thing, whether you are just starting out or have already achieved a lot, always consider your glass as half empty.
I believe that the current generation is much keener and they are exposed to various opportunities and avenues that we never had. My only advice to them would be to never stop learning. The more you seek knowledge the more prepared you are to face situations. Have in yourself the determination and discipline to see things through.”