Please join us in welcoming Kari Ladd to the EnSite development team! Kari is a highly experienced programmer with 12 years of experience in a wide variety of environments, from front end to database to Web. She’s proficient in .NET, C# and SQL. Yes! A graduate of prestigious Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Kari is an avid gamer (duh), movie buff, and all-around cat lover. That is so cool with us! We’re very glad to have Kari aboard to tackle our growing project list for 2017 and beyond. Welcome Kari!
Users of EnSite Safari Suite know energy contract pricing is a cornerstone of energy sales management. Safari Contracts support complex energy pricing and unit management for natural gas and electricity, a key component of success in retail energy sales. A host of features make complex energy billing with Safari manageable, efficient, and highly audit friendly.
Safari users also know that the Contract interface is constantly evolving, and that’s especially true for our latest release of Safari Version 4.19. Read on to find out more about the latest innovations in Safari energy contract pricing and management.
New Price Type Management Dialog Box
The Exhibit Pricing Details screen has been enhanced to include a new, separate dialog box for the management of pricing assigned for the exhibit. This “isolates” the Price Type management functions in the screen’s upper grid from functions at the screen’s lower grid. This enhancement greatly reduces the likelihood of user errors and system errors that can be caused by the screen’s two grids being simultaneously available for editing.
View Pricing Rate Details from the Pricing Screen
On the Exhibit Pricing Details screen and the Charges tab of the Add/Edit Contracts screen, where Index/Rate Names are displayed, users can now double-click the Rate Name to open the applicable Rate screen to show the Rate and its Values.
The applicable Rate shown at the Contract Pricing grid or the Charges tab may be a Pricing Rate, Tariff Rate or Pipeline Rate, or the Composite Rate for a Composite Pricing Index. If a Rate is double-clicked at one of these locations, the appropriate Rate screen opens. If the rate is a Composite rate, a user can double-click the individual Rates (under the Component Name column at the Composite Pricing Index screen’s lower grid) to open the Pricing Rates screen to see the Pricing Rate’s values.
Copy Energy Contract Pricing from Source Spreadsheets
Entry of energy Contract Pricing has been enhanced for Version 4.19 to allow the user to set up prices and volumes in a spreadsheet and then transfer the entries to the Exhibit Pricing Details screen using standard copy and paste methods.
EnSite is pleased to welcome Neeta Jeyaram as our brand new Sr. Database Administrator! Neeta has an impressive background in SQL Server database administration, as well as past gigs managing financial data systems and as a business analyst. She also brings an MS in Information Technology to the table from nearby University of Central Missouri.
Neeta, husband Pete and their young daughter live in Omaha and enjoy exploring the local “scene” – our many fine restaurants, farmers markets and the like – as well as travel and movies. I’m told a new dog might also be in the picture! We’re confident that Neeta will be instrumental in helping EnSite increase efficiencies and explore new opportunities in data management. Says Neeta, “I look forward to learning, working and building amazing software with the wonderful team here!”
Thanks Neeta, and welcome!
For energy marketers, utility data management and utility relations are a big piece of the success “pie”. The energy customer is, after all, a customer of the utility as well as the energy marketer. In this relationship the customer is, of course, at the center. And as every good energy marketer knows, keeping the customer happy requires keeping the utility happy. Given the sheer number of utilities under which many marketers operate today, good utility relations can be an important strategic advantage. But maintaining that relationship can also be a challenge.
Enter Safari Suite Utility Data Management. Having grown up with the Safari Suite comprehensive system for energy sales and service, the Utility as a manageable entity has long been an integral feature of our energy marketing software and system. From automated EDI to tariff and price modeling, and from dynamic customer data management to utility-specific data operations and rates, Safari has you covered.
EDI Transaction Management
As our dedicated blog post on the Safari API points out, Safari is “EDI ready” in many deregulated markets.
The Safari UDI component (or Utility Data Interface) acts as a bridge between the Safari system and the EnSite customer’s commercial EDI provider to enable seamless, automated communication between the Marketer and EDI utilities (for Bill Ready, Rate Ready, and Dual Billing). In terms of sophistication, the EDI system goes beyond simple data or transaction transfers to conduct complex behind-the-scenes processes in Safari (such as automated price generation/submission for Rate Ready end users). These automated processes permit the Marketer to manage high-volume EDI transactions with minimal human intervention.
Tariff and Price Modeling
Safari Suite’s robust tariff and price modeling functionality takes the guess work out of estimating or creating “pass-through” Utility charges. The Tariff Model is set up by the EnSite user for one of two purposes:
- To generate Transportation/Distribution charges based on the Utility’s tariff for the customer’s assigned Utility Service Class
- To generate comparison pricing based on the Utility’s tariff for the customer’s Sales Class to demonstrate on the invoice the difference between what the customer is paying the marketer and what the Utility would charge for the same service.
In addition to the user-designed Tariff Model, EnSite employs internally developed “tariff programs” that determine rules and methods used for nominating natural gas to the Utility, balancing daily nominations with supply, and managing storage balances.
Account Utility Data
Safari Suite’s Customer Care system manages a variety of date-effective utility data applicable to individual Accounts. Known as “Utility Services”, such account-level data describes characteristics of the Account set by the Utility. Examples include the Account Rate Class, Service Class, its electricity Capacity/Transmission Obligations, its Maximum Daily Quantity for gas nominations, and much more. In fact, there’s no limit to the amount or type of Utility service data that can be managed in Safari. Users can easily manage updates to values for service data over time, and updates of utility service data via EDI transactions is fully automated.
Utility Rates and UOM Conversion
Users can create and manage unlimited rates for modeled utilities in Safari, known as Tariff Rates. Tariff Rates are available for selection throughout Safari for such purposes as factoring line loss (distribution loss) into metered volumes purchased at the city gate, assigning the utility’s BTU value to natural gas supply, charging unit-based fees such as transportation fees, setting rates for electricity charges related to Capacity and Transmission, and much more. Tariff Rates are also utilized in setting up utility-specific “conversion factors” that allow Safari to translate usage in one Unit of Measure to billed units in a second Unit of Measure.
Safari Suite: Unlimited Utility Support
As this review demonstrates, the Safari utility is a highly developed, constantly evolving, and inherently flexible model for managing utility-based Account data and processes involving utility usage, rates and charges. It will continue to evolve, as Safari Suite users in partnership with EnSite bring more utilities and utility tariffs into the system.
Don’t get left behind—grow your markets with Safari Suite. We are standing by to incorporate your market footprint into the system that knows how to support your business, your utilities, and the customers you both serve.
Please join us in welcoming Tim Hayes to the EnSite developer team! Our brand new Sr. Application Developer is an IT veteran with 30 years of experience in the field. A graduate of Nebraska’s own Bellevue University, Tim’s programming background in VB.NET, C# for .NET, WinForms and more should come in pretty handy. With wife Lori and the four “kids” (cats!), Tim enjoys video games (surprise!) and is currently planning to build a new computer so he can play the latest games. Yeah that sounds like EnSite IT.