This is how most asset managers typically do their PPA billings: They go to multiple monitoring platforms, pull the performance reports, add data from multiple sources in an Excel spreadsheet, aggregate the data and then email reports to the accounting team for billing. The accounting team downloads the report from the utility meter, prints them and bills the off-taker manually. This cycle repeats every month.
This manual process is very cumbersome and time-consuming so what is the solution? It’s called Shadow Billing!
Here is how it works.
1: You track your PPA contract in an asset management (AM) platform such as Hap. Whether it’s a fixed rate, variable rate, escalated rate, TOU (Time of use) or based on a specific market rate, it can be tracked and stored.
2: Your performance monitoring data can be pulled from multiple monitoring / SCADA systems into a single asset management platform daily or intraday via API integration. Not only can this be used for reporting, it can also be used for billing.
3: Here is where the magic happens. The asset management platform will correlate the performance data against your PPA contract, and auto-generate your invoices for you. An asset manager can then review the invoices, validate them and provide approval in case there are discrepancies.
4: The workflow will continue with the accounting team being notified that the error-free invoices are now ready for them during the billing cycle. The accountant then comes into the asset management software, select the invoices they want to bill and syncs with the accounting software such as quickbooks. The selected invoices will then be imported into the accounting software through API integration.
This allows the asset management team and finance team to be in sync with each other. The sync between the AM platform and your accounting software can be a one-way sync or a two-way sync depending on your needs. Expenses and operating costs can also be synced If necessary. This gives visibility to both parties when they need to backtrack, reference historical billing, or make adjustments in the event of communication errors or curtailment.
How does this work in complex scenarios where you have multiple off-takers?
A: Multiple off-takers that buy a percentage amount of the power or up to a certain amount of kWh can also be set in systems such as Hap; the system will still have the ability to create the invoices for multiple parties.
B: If you have a very complex setup, invoices can be manually created or overwritten when generated. The platform will allow you to copy or use templates to quickly create invoices. The sync can still take place with the accounting software in this event.
Arbox Hap is a comprehensive asset management platform that allows PPA billing and shadow billing for solar & wind power producers amongst other feature-sets. Ask us about integration with QuickBooks and Sage!
Contact us today to see how HAP® can help you manage your activities efficiently and boost your bottom line.