It’s difficult to disrupt and transform an industry with set-in-stone, legacy business processes, but that’s exactly what Enercare Inc. has done with the HVAC sector.

The Toronto-based heating, cooling, water heating and sub-metering solutions provider launched its customer mobile application in September 2016 in hopes it would transform the perception of the company from “the folks who fix my furnace” to “the company that makes it easy for me to run my house”.

The easy-to-use app “creates a new customer engagement channel for customer service and sales, and enabling the first step towards a connected home consumer product offering,” the company explains to ITBusiness.ca.

The “Uber-like experience for homeowners” provides a number of services, from proactive notification of issues, smart thermostat, carbon monoxide and smoke detection, to flood monitoring, air quality monitoring, and energy management.

“Not only is this the first customer mobile app for Enercare, but it’s also the first mobile app in the HVAC service industry,” says Irene Zaguskin, CIO of Enercare. “The HVAC industry is very mature with decades old business processes and regulations, so introducing leading edge technologies also required innovative approaches to product development and managing organizational change. We successful used agile methodologies to deliver the project, demonstrating an innovative approach to thinking about the people and processes involved, not merely the end product.”

It was developed in-house at a company-wide leadership event via “facilitated brainstorming,” Zaguskin continues. Focused teams took ideas through various levels of elaboration, design, and building, and then built up support for the ideas with executives, business stakeholders, and across the organization.

“We also involved employees in internal pilot launches to collect valuable feedback and generate buzz throughout the company,” she adds.

The company is nominated for ITWC’s Digital Transformation Awards, being held June 14 in Toronto. Though nominations for this year are now closed, we’re covering every nominee that we’ve received in ITBusiness.ca ahead of the big event.

So far, Enercare’s mobile app has been downloaded more than 10,000 times, with nearly 3,000 of its customers using the app to schedule service calls and interact with the company.

“These results have exceeded our expectations by nearly 100 per cent. Using the mobile app, Enercare regularly interacts with customers to increase customer engagement, customer satisfaction, brand awareness and loyalty, and ultimately, customer lifetime value,” concludes Zaguskin.

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