Escalent Names 38 Utilities As Easiest to Do Business With | Financial Buzz

Escalent Names 38 Utilities As Easiest to Do Business With

Despite the challenges of a pandemic and global financial crisis, utilities are easier to work with than ever, as Cogent Syndicated’s Customer Effort Index increases to 738 (on a 1,000-point scale). Obtaining phone service, making payments and acquiring outage information have improved the most among the customer touchpoints measured in the study. Based upon this index, 38 utilities stand out as being “easiest to do business with” among 140 of the largest utility companies in the US. These and other findings are from the Cogent Syndicated 2021 Utility Trusted Brand & Customer Engagement™: Residential study by Escalent, a top human behavior and analytics firm.

Being easier to work with has led to a significant increase in utility customer satisfaction as well, as the Customer Effort Index explains over 90% of overall satisfaction.

“Utilities continued making it easier for customers to do business with them, which is the sole reason customer satisfaction is also at all-time highs,” said Chris Oberle, senior vice president at Escalent. “Being easier to work with is leading to increased customer engagement and increased use of enhanced utility offerings.”

The highest-rated customer touchpoints are ease of interacting through utility websites and mobile access. Customers transacting with their utility through digital means have found it easy to navigate and resolve service issues.

“Utilities are doing a fantastic job satisfying customers. As more customers used digital service this year, they found it easy to transact, showing how the industry is quickly becoming a leader on the digital experience,” continued Oberle. “Our list of utilities that are easiest to do business with are also perceived as leaders on industry innovation and technology.”

The following is a list of 38 utilities Escalent has designated as being the “2021 Easiest to Do Business With” based upon their top performances on Cogent Syndicated’s utility Customer Effort Index. The utilities reflect best practices in making customer lives easier during trying times.

Easiest to Do Business With

   

Utility Benchmark Segment

   

Customer Effort Index

Cascade Natural Gas

   

Natural Gas West

   

804

Columbia Gas – South

   

Natural Gas South

   

790

TECO Peoples Gas

   

Natural Gas South

   

790

Kentucky Utilities

   

Electric South

   

784

Intermountain Gas Company

   

Natural Gas West

   

783

NW Natural

   

Natural Gas West

   

783

DTE Energy

   

Combination Midwest

   

780

Piedmont Natural Gas

   

Natural Gas South

   

780

OUC

   

Electric South

   

772

Oklahoma Natural Gas

   

Natural Gas South

   

770

Columbia Gas of Ohio

   

Natural Gas Midwest

   

769

National Fuel Gas

   

Natural Gas East

   

769

New Jersey Natural Gas

   

Natural Gas East

   

768

Texas Gas Service

   

Natural Gas South

   

768

South Jersey Gas Company

   

Natural Gas East

   

764

Washington Gas

   

Natural Gas East

   

764

Black Hills Energy – Midwest

   

Combination Midwest

   

763

UGI Utilities

   

Natural Gas East

   

763

Idaho Power

   

Electric West

   

761

CenterPoint Energy – Midwest

   

Natural Gas Midwest

   

760

Elizabethtown Gas

   

Natural Gas East

   

760

PECO Energy

   

Combination East

   

760

PSE&G

   

Combination East

   

759

PPL Electric Utilities

   

Electric East

   

758

RG&E

   

Combination East

   

758

Toledo Edison

   

Electric Midwest

   

758

CPS Energy

   

Combination South

   

755

Pacific Power

   

Electric West

   

754

SMUD

   

Electric West

   

754

Peoples

   

Natural Gas East

   

753

Pepco

   

Electric East

   

753

Salt River Project

   

Electric West

   

751

Portland General Electric

   

Electric West

   

749

Spire Missouri – East

   

Natural Gas Midwest

   

746

SDG&E

   

Combination West

   

744

Avista

   

Combination West

   

743

NorthWestern Energy

   

Combination West

   

741

Penelec

   

Electric East

   

739

Index scores based upon 1,000-point maximum scale

About Utility Trusted Brand & Customer Engagement™: Residential

Escalent conducted surveys among 74,224 residential electric, natural gas and combination utility customers of the 140 largest US utility companies (based on residential customer counts). The sample design uses a combination of quotas and weighting based on US census data to ensure a demographically balanced sample of each evaluated utility’s customers based on age, gender, income, race and ethnicity. Utilities within the same region and of the same type (e.g., electric-only providers) are given equal weight to balance the influence of each utility’s customers on survey results. Escalent will supply the exact wording of any survey question upon request.

About Escalent

Escalent is a top human behavior and analytics firm specializing in industries facing disruption and business transformation. As catalysts of progress for more than 40 years, we tell stories that transform data and insight into a profound understanding of what drives human beings. And we help businesses turn those drivers into actions that build brands, enhance customer experiences and inspire product innovation. Visit escalent.co to see how we are helping shape the brands that are reshaping the world.

Contacts

Sarah Keller, 734.779.6847

sarah.keller@escalent.co