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J.D. Power Reports: Awareness And Participation In Electric Utility Offerings Increases Overall Satisfaction

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., July 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- While many electric utility companies provide programs to help their customers manage their energy costs, a large percentage of their customers are not aware of the programs available to them, according to the J.D. Power 2013 Consumer Engagement Study SM released today.

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The inaugural study measures the level of residential customers' engagement with their electric utility's programs, products and services, and is based on responses from customers of electric utilities throughout the United States and Canada. The study also provides electric utilities with insights regarding customer awareness, familiarity and usage of their utility's programs, products and services; ease of enrollment and participation in these offerings; and the impact these offerings have on the overall customer experience.

Data from the J.D. Power 2013 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study SM shows that overall satisfaction is highest among customers who participate in one or more of their electric utility's offerings at 679 on a 1,000-point scale. Satisfaction declines to 642 among those who are aware of the offerings, but have chosen to not participate in them, and declines even further to 582 among those who are unaware of any offerings from their utility.  

"Creating awareness and motivating customers to engage with new energy programs, products and services is a huge opportunity for utilities to improve customer satisfaction," said Jeff Conklin, senior director of the energy utility practice at J.D. Power. "Customer satisfaction is higher when consumers are merely aware of programs, and then satisfaction increases substantially with each additional program a consumer joins."

Customers were asked about their awareness of 29 various programs, products and services commonly offered by utilities. Study findings show that 19 percent of customers are not aware of any of the programs being offered by their utility provider. Electric utility company programs with the highest awareness rates are e-bill or electronic bill statements and payments (53%); in-home energy audit (28%); and awareness of rebates on Energy Star appliances (28%).

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