At Utility Week’s 2021 Customer Summit, customer service leaders from the energy and water sectors shared how they've tackled the challenges of 2020.
The summit was an opportunity to learn from successful customer strategies, and network with customer experience experts from the utilities industry.
Emma Lampert, Head of Customer Success at Localz, shared how utility providers are ramping up customer engagement to support the day of service. Key takeaways included:
- How customer engagement impacts no-access rates and call centre volume
- Omnichannel customer communication strategies to improve CSAT
What is customer engagement?
Customer engagement refers to the interactions between customers and organisations to create and strengthen a relationship. Increasingly, this engagement takes place across a range of digital and offline channels.
When it comes to service appointments, customer engagement can:
- Enhance the customer experience: Increase convenience and build an emotional connection.
- Strengthen brand loyalty and trust: Customers remember when they receive an exceptional customer experience.
- Generate valuable feedback and insights: Proactive engagement allows customers to share actionable feedback about their experience.
Done well, customer engagement leads to increased satisfaction and operational benefits.
If customers don’t know when you’re coming or any details about their appointment, you can’t ensure they’ll be around to give access. Many customers will be tempted to ease their uncertainty by phoning your contact centre. This leads to avoidable operational costs.
In short, lack of communication results in:
- No-access visits
- Congested call centres
- Delays on site due to lack of communication
- Low NPS & CSAT scores
Some companies mitigate this by phoning customers with appointment updates, sending an email days prior, or even sending a mailer months before the appointment. These methods aren't just costly - they also leave big gaps the customer journey.
The bar for customer experience
In their daily lives, customers have come to expect visibility and control. Services such as Amazon, Uber, and DPD understand that it's no longer acceptable to keep customers waiting.
Yet when it comes to energy and water appointments, customers have to put up with a four-hour arrival window. They don't know whom to expect, or when they'll show up. And all too often, there's no way to get important information to the operative.
Localz helps utility companies to craft the perfect customer communication journey before, during and after service appointments, with tools such as:
- SMS notifications
- ETA tracking
- Two-way communications
- Real-time feedback
The benefits of this approach go beyond the customer experience. Companies typically see a significant reduction in 'no-access' visits, fewer calls to the contact centre, and savings on outbound calls.
Download the quick guide now to find out how Localz could take your customer journey to the next level.