SSE - Digital Transformation

Delivering a 3-year digital transformation programme for SSE, the UK’s second largest energy company.

Science

Use customer insight to define the digital best practice and company behaviours.

Art

Create a set of digital behaviours and principles that define all products and interactions.

The Challenge

Faced with investigations by industry regulator Ofgem in 2011, SSE became the first of the Big Six to suspend door-to-door activities – before the financial crisis this accounted for nearly half of all customer switching in the industry. In August 2013, it called an end to cold-calling too. Not long after that, the government mandated that all UK households would be supplied with Smart meters by 2020, triggering a switching revolution across the industry. A new approach to digital customer service was desperately needed and one that went to the heart of the organisation.

The Solution

Based on extensive research with customers and internal stakeholders it was clear that a big change was needed and digital had to be at the very heart of what they did, so they took the bold step to transform themselves into a digital retailer of essential home services. This involved working from the core business processes and customer propositions through to the digital experience and how customers interacted with the brand. Working as part of the internal team both onsite and from our London studio, we undertook extensive customer and competitor research to define digital best practice and then created 10 design principles to guide all future work and to act as a north star for the transformation programme.

The Work

The Results

We delivered big changes at SSE with our three year digital transformation programme implementing:

  • Process Change & Design Principles – we worked with SSE to change from a classic waterfall methodology to Agile delivery methods and helped shape the supporting internal digital studio.
  • Digital Experience Language – we introduced a pattern-based design system that was extensively tested with users to provide a frictionless customer experience on all platforms.
  • Smart Energy App – we created the Smart Energy app proposition and then designed and developed the supporting iOS and Android native apps for an extensive national customer trial.

6.8m

UK customers received new digital services

26%

uplift in energy sales

50%

uplift in homes services/telco sales

≤17%

reduction in energy consumption by users of the Smart Energy app

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