Over the years, customer service portals have proven to have significant benefits for customer-facing businesses in all sectors, including utility providers.
That’s because they enhance the way companies communicate with customers, improve customer engagement, streamline and automate business processes, provide valuable data insights, and ultimately help to increase overall business profitability.
If that isn’t enough to convince you that a customer service portal is the right choice for your utility company, here are three reasons to implement a customer portal.
1 – Improve Customer Satisfaction
Technology has vastly disrupted the way in which businesses and customers interact with each other. Think Amazon versus the local bookstore.
Due to the lack of competition in the utility sector, providers are slower when it comes to adopting new technology. But even without competition, customers have come to expect the same type of experience with their utility company that they receive everywhere else. Even retail outlets are beginning to implement customer service portals.
To stay relevant, maintain healthy customer relationships and minimize customer service strain, utility providers are beginning to adopt customer portals. This advancement in the utilities service sector shows customers that their providers are willing to go above-and-beyond to meet their needs and improve the user experience. This develops loyalty and helps improve consumer response to price increases and other initiatives. Not to mention, with the introduction of alternative renewable energy companies, building customer trust and satisfaction is more important than ever.
2 – Reduce Costs
Another motivation for utility companies wanting to introduce a customer service portal is to reduce the time and money it takes to communicate with customers, resolve problems and ensure timely payment.
Offering a self-service platform means your customer support representatives can focus their time on offering superior service to customers and deal with more complex customer queries. It also reduces the need to scale your customer service department, as you are providing a platform for customers to answer their own questions.
As you know, hiring more reps is incredibly costly when you consider salaries, the personal needs of individuals, time off, sick leave and annual increases. Without sufficient staff, your customer service reps will be inundated with calls and customers will be waiting on hold for long periods at a time.
It’s much more cost effective to equip your customers with tools to access their information and data than it is to scale staff. In addition to all of this, the improved customer experience and access to information will help reduce the number of tedious and repetitive inquiries, as well as improve the employee customer interaction. This will result in better employee satisfaction and lower turnaround rates.
If your company is looking to scale its customer service support or has high turn around, then a customer portal may be the solution you need.
3 – Improve Business Efficiencies
If you find your customer service department is inefficient, your utility needs a new strategy.
A customer portal will not only help you save money by automating processes, it will also reduce keying errors and allow you to better allocate your resources.
Maximizing your resources to save employee time and freeing up customer reps to work on more complex customer issues not only means your business will work more efficiently, it also means you’ll be delivering superior customer service.
If any of these align with your utility company’s goals, it’s a good sign that you’re ready for a customer service portal. To find out more about how a customer portal can help you meet your objectives, contact SilverBlaze today.