Receiving Bills Electronically


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In this presentation, Steve Heinz discusses the pros and cons of receiving electronic billing data.

Steve Heinz is a Professional Engineer and Certified Energy Manager, and is the Founder and CEO of EnergyCAP, Inc.

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Receiving Bills Electronically

  1. 1. Receiving Bills Electronically©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comSteve Heinz, PE, CEMFounder & CEOEnergyCAP, Inc.
  2. 2. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comPresented by EnergyCAP, Inc.EnergyCAP is used by organizations that receive many utility bills forbill processing, energy reporting and analyticsOver 30 years as industry leader; first release in 1982. (Thepredecessor software was FASER Energy Accounting).Web-based and on-premise versions.Financially secure. No debt. No VC funds.EnergyCAP software is all we do—we don’t sell hardware, retrofits,consulting, bill payment outsourcing, procurement.
  3. 3. 1,500 organizations use EnergyCAP.City Government (San Francisco, Baltimore, Sacramento,Virginia Beach, Tampa, Denver, Jacksonville, Oklahoma City,Cleveland)County Government (Orange, Riverside, Santa Barbara CA;Loudoun, Fairfax, Chesterfield VA; Miami Dade, Charlotte FL)Federal (USMC, Smithsonian, U.S. Dept of Energy Labs)Commercial (Ryder, Equity Residential, Forest City, BJsWholesale Clubs, CBRE, Northrop Grumman)Education (800+ school districts, SUNY system, Univ of CAsystem, UCF, Univ of Kansas)©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader
  4. 4. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comReceiving Bills Electronically
  5. 5. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comAre Electronic Bills Right for Me?Pros:Free from keying errorsComplete details/line itemsSounds cheaper than keying
  6. 6. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comAre Electronic Bills Right for Me?Cons:Setup and managementSpecialized software/VANNo longer receive a hard copy billHigh skill levelMay not be cheaper, all costs considered
  7. 7. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comElectronic Is Best When:You have relatively few vendors and all facilities inone regionMany invoices from a vendor (at least hundredsa month)Vendor has support resources available andactively promotes electronic bills
  8. 8. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comEDI or Non-EDIEDI: Electronic Data InterchangeNon-EDI: Everything else
  9. 9. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comNon-EDI OptionsWeb scrapingPDF downloads from website, or direct delivery ofPDFsOCR from paper billsNon-EDI data file (CSV, XML)Outsource and import resultsNon-EDI
  10. 10. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comProcess: Obtain the data electronically, convert toEnergyCAP import format, map data fields and importNon-EDI
  11. 11. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comWeb scrapingVendor posts complete (enough) bill data on websiteWeb scraping tools allow automatic login anddownloadNon-EDI
  12. 12. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comWeb scrapingPros:No per-bill feeWeb scraping tools are quite powerful and easy touseThink of Intuit’s Mint.comNon-EDI
  13. 13. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comWeb scrapingCons:Vendor website changes break the web scrapingmappingComplete bill details may not be availableNon-EDI
  14. 14. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comPDF downloadsNative PDF has “raw data” within it, allowingaccurate importScanned PDF requires OCRNon-EDI
  15. 15. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comPDF downloadsPros:No per-bill feeYou get a bill imageNon-EDI
  16. 16. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comPDF downloadsCons:Requires a process to interpret the data, whether“native” or “scanned”Non-EDI
  17. 17. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOCR from paper billsCan be quite accurate and time-savingRequires mapping of each bill formatNon-EDI
  18. 18. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOCR from paper billsPros:No per-bill feeYou get a bill imageNon-EDI
  19. 19. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOCR from paper billsCons:Requires OCR software and mappingMapping is affected by bill format changesNon-EDI
  20. 20. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comNon-EDI filesCSV, XML, spreadsheet, etcUsually used for post-pay (historical) data, notlive billsNon-EDI
  21. 21. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comNon-EDI filesPros:No per-bill fee (generally)Non-EDI
  22. 22. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comNon-EDI filesCons:No paper bill or imageRequires software to interpret the data filesNon-EDI
  23. 23. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOutsource, then import resultsOutsource live bill processing to a trusted billprocessor (we recommend Cass)Cass file is converted to EnergyCAP import formatfor accurate bill import.Non-EDI
  24. 24. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOutsource, then import resultsPros:AccurateHassle-freeOptional bill payment serviceYou get a bill imageNon-EDI
  25. 25. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOutsource, then import resultsCons:Incurs a per-bill fee foreverNon-EDI
  26. 26. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comEDI
  27. 27. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comYou start with a raw EDI 810 electronic utility bill:EDI
  28. 28. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comYou end upwith a data-rich, 100%accurate bill inEnergyCAP:EDI
  29. 29. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comDeveloped by NIST (National Institute of Standards andTechnology (a Dept of Commerce agency)ANSI X12 is the parent standardEDI 810 is the specific standard for utility bill invoicesUtility Industry Group (UIG) maintains the standardIt is loose! All Utilities are not the same!Not offered by all UtilitiesEDI
  30. 30. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comTypical EDI process requirements:“997” is the acknowledgement of receipt of bills“VAN” is the value-added network, the intermediarybetween trading partners“820” is the remittance advice fileElectronic payments are usually requiredNo more paper billsNo, or very short, period of parallel paper andEDI billingEDI
  31. 31. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comEDI
  32. 32. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comTypical work flowEDI
  33. 33. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comEDI
  34. 34. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comEDI decision logicEDI
  35. 35. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comOption–Outsource the EDI processing toa middlemanThe service provider receives the EDI billsSends 997 acknowledgement to the vendorPrepares the data in EnergyCAP import formatTransmits the import files and pseudo-images of billsOur preferredmiddleman is Xebec(
  36. 36. ©2013 EnergyCAP, Inc. @energycap #energyleader www.EnergyCAP.comThank you for attending our webinar series!See them all at: