Design and Evaluation of a Hierarchy based Modular Invoice Preparation Framework for the Energy Market.

Energy providers usually have a huge customer base. These companies purchase energy from grid lines and provide various products, with different contracts, to their end customers. There are a plenty of parameters used in the energy market, necessary to build a contract. Along with these parameters, providers have to adhere to various governmental policies and regulations. This results in a considerable amount of information that is segregated into different databases like Energy Data Management (EDM), Portfolio Management (PFM), ADS, etc. MS-Dynamics could be used for Customer Relationship Management (CRM). These are useful in building software applications for energy providers, helping them to automate a variety of tasks. One of the best examples is monthly generation of invoices for end customers. The present system struggles to handle dynamic configuration changes and thus, it is a tedious task to prepare invoices. The main problem here is the frequent changes in contract from energy providers, customers and policies that are regularly updated by the government. Considering these factors, it is quite challenging to completely automate the invoice preparation process that is flexible enough to adapt to these dynamic changes. It will also be beneficial if the history of invoice preparation configuration and the final billing are saved for each customer. This promotes accountability and the data could be used further for analytics. This master thesis paper shall discuss the design of a model for invoice preparation and develop a framework to fully automate this process. The dynamic approach should typically eliminate the current manual work for invoice preparation, save operational costs and help energy providers generate monthly invoices and usage reports faster.

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Sharath Chandra Balachandra