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Electric vehicle knowledge hub and full service solution for SME fleets

Electric Vehicles by EDF

EDF Energy is the UK’s largest producer of low-carbon electricity and the biggest supplier of electricity by volume in Great Britain. They operate an innovation lab for new tech ventures.

EDF Energy is the UK’s largest producer of low-carbon electricity and the biggest supplier of electricity by volume in Great Britain. They operate an innovation lab for new tech ventures.

Problem / Opportunity

With the current rise in popularity of electric vehicles and with businesses looking to lower their carbon emissions, EDF Energy spotted a gap in the market to provide a one stop shop for SME’s to provide electric vehicle fleet leasing, chargepoint installation and energy supply services.

Hack & Craft was brought in to produce a pilot project that would test the market fit of this model within EDF Energy's existing business clients. Producing a platform that would act as a knowledge hub on electric vehicles and surrounding services, along with the generation of leads for the 3 in 1 solution. This comprised a frontend site, backend content management system and a backend account management portal that would track clients from initial enquiry, through customised quotes and finally to installation/delivery of services.

Innovation Team

Brought onboard at the beginning of the venture, we worked directly with the EDF Energy product owner, partner companies Arval and Chargepoint Services, account managers and specialists in low carbon vehicles. Working together with our UX experts, designers, creative director, senior architect, backend engineers, frontend engineers and business analysts to form the innovation team. We were able to iterate rapidly through designs following EDF Energy branding guidelines, to create interactive users journeys and a powerful backend account management system to generate new leads and track the customer process from start to finish.

Tech

The EV Hub platform combines powerful EV configuration options with CMS functionality. We will paired the state of the art Umbraco CMS system with custom-built APIs and portal frontends, that worked in unison to deliver a seamless UX.

The Customer Portal was a rich AngularJS web frontend, that will drove the homepage and EV, charge point and tariff configurations. This drove all dynamic life-time cost calculations that might exist. The frontends only contained presentational logic, business logic is to be encapsulated in the API.

The Documents Mini Portal was a super light weight AngularJS webapp that allowed users with unique, personalised links to upload specific documents into specifics parts of the customer life cycle.

Both frontends were driven by an authenticated JSON API written in C# with state of the art frameworks and libraries. All business logic was centrally managed in the API.

Notifications were implemented via the Mandrill 3rd party webservice. However, each 3rd party service was integrated via abstracted interfaces and can thus be easily replaced. The Arval Model/Option data importer was also abstracted and thus replaceable.

The internal Admin API drove all business processes and exposed business logic to be used in the internal management internal frontends.

Both AM and Admin portal are rich AngularJS web frontends, similar though distinctly styled to the customer facing frontends.

The Umbraco CMS system provided extended content management capabilities to EDF content managers. It also managed parts of the content display tasks for customer facing content.

Impact

The custom architecture and powerful CMS system has allowed EDF Energy to rapidly adapt their content to test market fit and user conversion within their existing client base. Providing them valuable insight into a fast growing business sector that is looking at exponential growth in the coming years.

Methodology EV Created with Sketch. Email Marketing Campaign Google Analytics Tracking UX Improvements CONTINUOUS DELIVERY System Account Management System Content Management Customer Portal Electric Vehicles by EDF ALPHA Hack and Craft ChargePoint Services Team Arval Team EDF Energy Team Team members PROJECT ROADMAP 3. Scale 2. Development 1. Ideation
Dev EV Created with Sketch. MANAGEMENT PORTAL ACCOUNT MANAGEMENT SYSTEM CONTENT PORTAL CUSTOMER ELECTRIC VEHICLES BY EDF TARIFF CONTRACTS EV CHARGING EV CHARGEPOINTS VEHICLE LEASING EDF Energy In partnership with Arval and Chargepoint Services

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Outro

Science and technology are the principal drivers of human progress. The creation of technology is hindered by many problems including cost, access to expertise, counter productive attitudes to risk, and lack of iterative multi-disciplinary collaboration. We believe that the failure of technology to properly empower organisations is due to a misunderstanding of the nature of the software creation process, and a mismatch between that process and the organisational structures that often surround it.