Project Odin | Bill Payments 2.0

After becoming a one stop shop for mobile recharge, postpaid mobile bill, DTH and Datacard payments, it was natural progression for FreeCharge to foray into other utility payment categories such as electricity. However we didn’t just want to add a few more forms without solving any real problem. So we took a step back and tried to understand the bill payments from a customer’s point of view.

To a customer, bill payments is an unwanted yet unavoidable monthly chore. Nobody likes to remember bill details, conduct a treasure hunt for bill amount on paper bills printed by ‘invisible’ ink, keep track of due date and finally, pay the bills. Now some things are unavoidable but we resolved to solve the rest. We think, customer doesn’t have to-

  1. Remember account number/customer ID
  2. Search for bill amount
  3. Keep a track of bill generation or due date
  4. Manage billers at multiple places

Personalized turbo billpay
To enable the successful enrollment in the first go, we stayed true to our “one input at a time” philosophy. Every input is supported by either dropdown menus or tool tips such as examples numbers.

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After the customer inputs the key identifier such as account ID, additional information such as bill amount, due date etc. are fetched from the biller in real time so that customer can verify the details and proceed to pay. If no bill is pending, customer can save the biller for future.

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Biller is ‘automagically’ saved and fetched in the next cycle after aforementioned steps. All the saved billers are shown on personalized bill payment home screen of the logged in user. Here the customer can view the bill amount and proceed to payment in one click.

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Notifications

Once the customer saves a biller, we take the responsibility to remind her about bill generation and due date arrival via SMS/emails at appropriate time. Customer can click the link in the notification and pay the bill instantly.

My Billers

The customer can manage all the bills at My Billers. She can switch notifications on/off or add/delete a biller. In the pursuit of customer’s convenience, we take some proactive decisions but the final control is left to the customer.

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We really hope that you like our initial steps toward making bill payments a pain-free and convenient experience. Please give bill payments a spin on www.freecharge.in. We’ll appreciate a feedback note at care@freecharge.in to help us improve further.

List of available utility providers on FreeCharge as on August 21, 2015.

  1. APSPDCL – Southern Power Distribution Company Ltd Andhra Pradesh
  2. BESCOM Bangalore
  3. BEST Mumbai
  4. Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board
  5. JVVNL – Jaipur Vidyut Vitran Nigam Ltd
  6. JDVVNL – Jodhpur Vidyut Vitran Nigam Ltd
  7. MP Paschim Kshetra Vidyut Vitaran Indore
  8. Reliance Energy Mumbai
  9. Mahanagar Gas Mumbai