Utilities have been considered a Conservative industry, where legacies of culture and regulatory environment co-exist that had been focusing on cost reduction rather than broader innovation (as demonstrated in the figure below).
However, change is gradually cutting across the utility industry. Technological develo- pments such as smart grids, pressure to install smart meters, Google’s Nest thermostat and energy consumption apps are giving customers more control over the timing of the energy they use and associated costs. This sea-change along with changing customer behaviours are creating new prospects for customer engagement and transformation of customer service by gaining customers’ confidence and community-based customer care.
To become a socially-engaged organisation, utilities need to understand and gain insights of the usage of new digital technologies, for instance, social media, mobile, and analytics to advance rapidly on the economic landscape. These innovations are used widely by consumers and employees alike.
For example, presently, of the 83% of adults who are online in UK, more than 60% are active on social media. Now, the onus is on the unit to create processes, methodologies and instill a framework that can serve the needs of customers. Customer services units today have no option but to be Efficient, Smart and Agile. The good news for companies here is that by tweaking the age old processes and a little bit of improvisation they will be able to shrink the customer services spend and simultaneously improve the net promoter score. In addition, these companies will benefit from having platforms to monitor utilities’ brand value and for marketing-related activities.
Our utility champs @ speradigital, are well equipped to work with your team and assist you while you overhaul your existing processes.
Author: Debaleena Debnath
Debaleena is a digital media consultant @ speradigital
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