AWS Partner Network (APN) Blog

How Accenture Helps Utilities Transform Billing Management Through Uptility

By Soonam Kurian, Sr. Solutions Architect; Asraa Rehman Yousuff, Sr. Partner Development Manager, AABG – AWS
By Xavier Moreno, Iberia Go-to-Market Lead, AABG – Accenture
By Félix Serrano Sáez, Sr. Solutions Architect, Uptility, AABG – Accenture
By Pablo Peralta, Customer Account Lead Sr. Executive for Utilities Iberia – Accenture


Small and mid-sized utilities have challenges within their vertical stack to commercialize and operate energy products such as power and gas. These challenges include delivering proven and cost-effective solutions to customers, improving control of operational risks, better customer engagement, and the ability to compete in a regulated market.

An efficient utility billing system allows providers to track and monitor the utility services they offer, manage billing processes, collect data, and engage well with customers. Building, maintaining, and supporting a system like this can be cost-prohibitive, as traditional packaged solutions are often complex, require heavy customization, and can be priced outside the organization’s budget.

Recognizing these challenges as an opportunity to assist customers to digitally transform their operations while reducing overall cost of ownership, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Accenture collaborated to build a vertical solution called Uptility for utilities in regulated markets.

In this post, we will discuss how Uptility provides the aforementioned capabilities at low cost. We’ll also showcase its modules for service provisioning, measuring and billing, access management, data and configuration management, settlements calculation and invoice generation, and reporting and analytics, along with a portal for customer engagement.

Accenture is an AWS Premier Tier Services Partner and leading, global professional services company with 23 AWS Competencies including Energy Consulting. Accenture is a member of nine AWS Partner Programs including the AWS Managed Cloud Service Provider (MSP) and Well-Architected Partner Programs.

Solution Overview

The image below depicts process flows for distributing and marketing energy from suppliers to end customers. Once a client has signed a contract and is consuming energy via the marketer, the distributer sends an invoice to the marketer. The marketer, in turn, processes the invoice and generates a bill for the end customer.

Enterprise applications such as SAP or Oracle have long been used for a billing management system. As discussed before, however, high licensing and maintenance costs, as well as the need to develop employees with application-specific skills, may prove cost-prohibitive to many small and mid-sized utilities companies.


Figure 1 – Contract signing to billing process flow.

Uptility, a lean solution powered by capabilities of AWS and Salesforce, aims to provide full lead-to-cash capabilities for energy marketers. It comes with a flexible, scalable, and robust architecture, supported by an industrialized application maintenance service model, as well as flexible and scalable business process outsourcing (BPO) services that provide resources, procedures, workflows, and tools.

The Uptility frontend provides functionalities to configure templates and pricing for power products, manage switching and renewals, perform digital marketing and campaigns, and to generate operational and regulatory reporting and self-service portals.


Figure 2 – Frontend capabilities of Uptility.

On the backend, Uptility integrates with origin points (corporate systems and software-as-a-service applications such as Salesforce) and ingests data, identifies best measurement points, performs required adjustments, performs product billing, supply, and demand forecasting, and provides additional advanced capabilities.


Figure 3 – Backend capabilities of Uptility.

Interactions with Uptility are done through the Uptility Console, wherein users (back office, support, energy management user) will be able to:

  • View the status of integrations with external systems.
  • Control the settlement and billing process.
  • Manage the established processes through parameters you can consult and modify.
  • Perform manual actions on data ingestion, data locking, execution/locking of calculations, information download, and data modification.
  • Access all of the necessary information for the correct management of tasks and process control.
  • Observe data comparisons that help detect deviations or problems in the processes.

Solution Architecture

Uptility enables utilities to manage the end-to-end billing process for gas and electricity products. The solution automatically ingests data from various sources such as customer relationship management (CRM) systems, distributor systems, product and price information, and from manual uploads.

Once ingested, data is validated and forwarded to the processing module which performs measure management, bill generation, and settlement. The analytics module generates predefined reports, performs customer scoring and segmentation, supply and demand forecasting, and predictive debt analysis.

Finally, the billing delivery module integrates with enterprise resource planning (ERP) for account balancing and delivers the generated PDF invoice.


Figure 4 – Meter-to-invoice functional architecture. Click to enlarge.

The diagram below illustrates the detailed technical solution architecture for core capabilities of Uptility. The architecture follows an AWS-native solutioning approaches utilizing key AWS data analytics services.


Figure 5 – Technical solution architecture. Click to enlarge.

  • Origin: Origin point of the information to be ingested in the data lake, whether corporate systems or SaaS applications such as Salesforce.
  • Data loading: Entry module where the information is received from Origin through the Amazon AppFlow integration service or by SFTP; in all cases, the information is stored in the landing Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) bucket.
  • Staging: Module where the ingested information is validated and refined. The data stored in this phase is a copy of the ingested data, but already cleaned. AWS Step Functions manages orchestration between services.
  • Processing: Contains the billing calculation processes. This is the area where refined data are integrated, including metadata, to classify them based on a functional information model before being transformed and cleaned for exploitation. Amazon EMR and AWS Glue are used for data processing.
  • Analysis: Data analysis is performed using Amazon Redshift or with Amazon Athena querying information loaded in S3.
  • Management: This module at the top is responsible for data governance, access management, and cost control.
  • Monitoring: Management of alerts and traces for diagnosing possible errors in the data, using services such as Amazon CloudWatch, AWS CloudTrail, and AWS X-Ray.
  • Delivery: The processed data is made available to be queried by external systems. The solution will be integrated with visualization tools such as Amazon QuickSight. It’s also possible to consume the data through a REST API interfaces.

Solution Deployment Options

Included below is an overview of the AWS account structure that has two flavors:


For each utility customer, an Accenture-owned AWS account is created where the infrastructure and selected modules are deployed. The workloads run in this account.


Figure 6 – Accenture-hosted: all accounts are owned by Accenture.

The complete solution is structured around the following AWS accounts owned by Accenture:

  • Development: Development environment; the generated code is managed in InnerSource.
  • CI/CD: Centrally manages the deployment of the components hosted in AWS CodeCommit on the rest of the accounts.
  • Pre-production: Environments for integration, performance, and disaster recovery (DR) testing.
  • Client and billing: In this account, utilities customers manage the provision of billing, identity, logging, and more.
  • Production: Accounts where utilities customer workloads run.
  • Monitoring and operations: The production accounts are monitored and managed by the system operators’ team in this account.


In this case, Uptility is deployed to AWS accounts owned by the customer where the infrastructure and selected modules are deployed. Only the development AWS account is owned by Accenture; the rest of the environment will be placed in the customer’s landscape.


Figure 7 – Customer-hosted: all accounts except for development are owned by customer.

  • CI/CD: Centrally manages the deployment of the components hosted in AWS CodeCommit on the rest of the accounts.
  • Pre-production: Environments for integration, performance, and DR testing.
  • Production: Accounts where utilities customer workloads run.
  • Monitoring and operations: From this account, the production accounts are monitored and managed by the system operators’ team.

Invoice Generation

The generated invoice contains details of fixed cost, consumption for the period, and other information required to be included for regulatory compliance, as well as historic consumption details.


Figure 8 – Sample invoice (summary).

Included below is a detailed view of the invoice that shows breakup of billing for power consumed across different pricing tiers and other components such as tax. This view also provides visualizations on how the consumption is spread across various energy categories and the impact on the environment.


Figure 9 – Sample invoice (details).

Application Dashboards

In order to provide visibility to each step of the billing process, the Uptility admin console provides a complete set of QuickSight dashboards to display configurations and consumption trends.

For example, the dashboard below displays trends on consumption and invoice amount over time as well the distribution for the current billing cycle.


Figure 10 – Data loading status.

The following dashboard displays product management configurations. It lists the rules to apply in the settlement process for each component product.


Figure 11 – Product management configurations for settlement.

Key Benefits of Uptility

Uptility is an AWS-native billing platform that provides a cost-effective mechanism to collect measurements of the supply points, perform monthly settlement, generate an invoice per supply point, and send the invoice to the Utility’s end customer. It features a serverless, microservice-based architecture and Salesforce-based frontend.

Originally designed for the Iberian utilities market, Uptility calculates, forecasts, and bills with high performance and provides advanced capabilities. The solution can be installed directly in a customer’s AWS instance, but can also be offered as a full SaaS solution and can be scaled for utilities in extended regulated markets.

Key advantages of Uptility are:

  • AWS-native cloud solution with no complex configurations.
  • Flexibility—include only the functionality you need and adapts to business needs.
  • Quick to deploy, enabling a cost-per-license progressive deployment.
  • Low to no cost to entry or maintenance cost.
  • Scale on demand without additional CapEx investment, eliminating wasted capacity.

Implementation Example

Included below are the details of a sample implementation to transform a customer’s business operating model. One of the key aspects of this transformation is the implementation of a new, comprehensive digital platform that includes customer engagement, agile product management, meter to cash, and data and integration platforms.

Within this platform, Uptility can provide a billing platform that can be integrated into traditional corporate systems hosted on premises.


Figure 12 – Sample Uptility implementation including integration with corporate systems.

The implementation scope consists of:

  • Corporate and third-party systems to be integrated
    • Frontend CRM solution
    • Computer telephony integration (CTI) with Salesforce
    • Collections with SAP
    • Commissions with Callidus
    • Document management with Alfresco
    • Integration with local tax systems
    • Integration with corporate websites
  • Integration of all components
    • Achieved using Amazon AppFlow or through a corporate middleware such as MuleSoft, based on implementation specific requirements


Accenture’s Uptility is a cloud-based billing platform powered by AWS and using a serverless architecture. It’s an extensible and ready-to-use solution that calculates, forecasts, and generates bills and provides advanced capabilities for cross-sell and customer segmentation.

Accenture has a well-established utilities practice that can help customers through intelligent solutions and domain know-how to solve the problems of today.

Accenture and AWS have worked together for more than a decade to help organizations realize value from their applications and data. The collaboration between the two companies, the Accenture AWS Business Group (AABG), enables enterprises to accelerate their pace of digital innovation and realize incremental business value from cloud adoption and transformation.

Engage Accenture to modernize your billing platform using Uptility.


Accenture – AWS Partner Spotlight

Accenture is an AWS Premier Tier Services Partner and MSP. A global professional services company that provides an end-to-end solution to migrate to and manage operations on AWS, Accenture’s staff of 569,000+ people include more than 20,000 AWS-trained technologists with more than 12,000 AWS certifications.

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