Enerjisa ‘employs’ artificial intelligence

The recent, dazzling developments in technology have deeply affected business processes around the world. Digital employees have already entered into use, with companies employing data analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and deep learning. Sabanci Holding ’s energy subsidiary Enerjisa Enerji, which offers electricity distribution services in Toroslar, Ankara, and on the Asian side of Istanbul has now placed digitalization on its list of priorities. The company announced that it has developed the world’s first, patented digital transformation model.

“All business processes have been reshaped and digitalized with the impact of disruptive technological developments in Turkey and around the world,” said Mehmet Firat, Head of Information Technologies (IT) and Digital Business Management at Enerjisa. Accordingly, redesigning business processes is critical for our company. To this end, Enerjisa has branded and obtained a patent for its digitalization process called E-Ternal.

E-Ternal dates to 2009, when Enerjisa took over the electricity distribution firm Baskent Elektrik. However, the company laid out this model in the fall of 2020 and announced it in March 2021. “This is an ‘eternal’ journey, which started in 2009 and will be continuously developed,” said Firat. The E-Ternal brand incorporates a trilogy. The letter ‘e’ represents electron, energy, and Enerjisa.

E-Ternal has had many benefits for Enerjisa. The company reduced the electricity leakage losses from decimal digits to single-digit levels, while also doubling the monetary contribution of quality factor outputs (called quality bonuses) during the tariff periods and improved their collection ratio. “We’ve achieved a large asset base at the company which we manage with our digital infrastructure,” Mehmet Firat noted.

Maintenance processes were the main agenda item for Enerjisa for this year. The company managed to implement them successfully with E-Ternal. “We’ll see the output in the coming years,” said Firat. The company has improved its system performance in customer operation processes, including meter reading, cut out-opening, and meter replacement. It has also shortened the time spent on these services. The bill printing time of the firm’s meter reader in the field fell from eight seconds to three seconds. “Our customers were waiting in ques for subscription. We’ve expanded our organization, improved processes, and customer experience. We’ve also reduced the wait time by 50%,” Firat added.

To do so, Enerjisa has raised the number of its digital channels. Customers are now able to carry out transactions directly from their homes without visiting the company’s offices or service centers using its mobile applications, online transaction centers, and e-Devlet (e- Government) applications.

The company has had a variety of other innovations. For instance, when a customer calls Enerjisa to appeal a bill, robots check and respond within seconds if there is a mistake or to see what the situation is. Moreover, the company has “employed” a digital, virtual employee. Customers can report failures and receive information by texting with them. “If they can’t make themselves understood, a physical call center employee immediately steps in,” said Firat.

This virtual employee, whose name is Volti, joined Enerjisa about three months ago. Its Turkish language support is developing gradually. “Apart from all our conventional and digital channels, we’ve added this new channel to give customers the best experience,” Mehmet Firat said.

The team behind EnerjiSA’s AI algorithms continuously checks in on Volti. The model is improved in line with the instances in which Volti couldn’t respond. “If it is left alone, it can’t rapidly develop, respond and it may do more harm than good,” said Firat. That’s why the technology teams that Enerjisa are constantly going over Volti’s success rate.

But what is Volti’s success rate? For instance, customers ask a question to Volti then they to a survey about the service it provided. Enerjisa checks these surveys if the bot is responding accurately and if customers felt bored or abandoned. The system is improved in line with survey results. There are tens of thousands of records, and Enerjisa has raised the success rate by 10% since Volti was employed, according to Firat. “However, it’s a continuously developing model. It will reach a better point as we receive records and improve upon unsuccessful scenarios,” he added.

Volti cannot speak. That’s why Enerjisa is working now to develop a virtual-speaking employee. “But they belong to the same place at the end of the day,” Mehmet Firat says. The company offers various channels to meet customers’ needs. Call centers, digital channels, and chatbots are among these channels. Aside from those, the firm aims to rapidly develop a digital, speaking agent at the call center channel when the project is completed.

Volti tries not to leave the questions unanswered. It sometimes has difficulties meets arising from accents and typos. “There are also those who text in order to test Volti, trick it, or do something different,” said Firat. As a result, Volti receives questions from across the board.

For the best employee experience reduce risk

Enerjisa aims to improve its employee experience, beginning pre-employment, when candidates are sent their CVs to the company, through their life cycle at the firm, according to Mehmet Firat, Head of IT and Digital Business Management of Enerjisa. The company manages this process digitally and records the time it takes. “We intend to conduct this process in the best manner possible and aim to offer the best experience when the employee is at the company,” said Firat. In terms of occupational health safety, Enerjisa has also benefitted from digital transformation. The company employs nearly 7,500 people in the field. “We keep employees away from risk that may even cause the smallest harm by using the image processing technology. This will make a big difference in the sector,” he added.

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