Superstorm Sandy knocked out electricity and gas service for more than eight million people at its height, creating a massive restoration effort that lasted weeks. Affected consumers didn’t just want their heat and lights back on—they wanted information, specifically when their service would be restored.
Data visualizations with real-time maps played a key role in connecting utilities with customers, particularly on mobile devices which were able to operate, even if temporarily, during prolonged outages.
During high-profile natural disasters, such as Sandy, the effectiveness of companies’ customer relations applications becomes immediately apparent to customers as well as public officials, the media, and anyone else following the news. But utility industry experts say that more sophisticated use of analytics and visualizations can improve a number of business processes beyond customer service.
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