THE SECRET TO PREVENTING DISCONNECTS
- Nov 6, 2020 2:36 am GMT
Pandemic-related unemployment rates are out of control, but these numbers don’t paint an accurate picture of what’s truly happening. It’s actually much worse. Official unemployment figures only reflect those who are actively searching for a job. They do not account for the underemployed, furloughed, or anyone who has simply given up.
What does this mean for the utilities industry? It’s likely going to get worse before it gets better.
But what if there were a way for utilities to stem the impending flood of delinquencies—before they begin. Respond strategically now to prevent disconnects later.
IT’S MORE THAN OFFERING A PAYMENT PLAN
Customers with flawless payment histories are finding themselves facing an unwelcome reality: for the first time in their lives, they’re having to choose between food or bills. They may WANT to pay their bills but currently can’t and, for many, this creates a paralysis-inducing shame.
How can you help them? Offering a deferred payment program is only the beginning.
ENGAGE…THE RIGHT WAY
Proactive, empathetic outreach coupled with easy-to-navigate self-serve tools gives customers a sense of control when their world has turned upside down.
Effectively promoting and communicating your program with empathy and the right digital experience is critical. Furthermore, the right session flows and mobile-centric experience will produce exponentially higher rates of desired behavior, influencing customers to resolve any issues outside your call center. (For the best results, work with a digital communications expert.)
Utilities that are quickly and efficiently able to deliver a highly personalized experience to customers, at scale, are currently seeing predictable payment performance. What’s more, customer sentiment in response to these campaigns is overwhelmingly positive.
Customers appreciate the opportunity to recover financially and prefer using their mobile devices to set up their plan rather than speaking to a call center agent.
The mobile experience itself has resulted in an added benefit – many customers, grateful for the gesture, are opting to pay their bills on the spot.