By - Danielle Duignan

Utility Billing and Payments Conference 2020
April 21-22, 2020 | Atlanta, GA

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Overview

If this event is of interest you may also be interested in this related event

The CRM/CIS Evolution: Transforming your Customer Platform & Experience, April 20, 2020 in Atlanta, GA

For many customers, paying their monthly energy bill is the only time they really interact with their utility. Most customers only think of their utility when they submit a payment, and that means billing and payment interactions can quite literally define the utility customer experience. As much as utility providers may try to create exceptional experiences for their customers, one factor often gets in the way: payments. No one likes to see a bill in the mail, but with the right messaging, the utility payment process can improve customer experience (CX).

Customer billing is the utilities’ “ground zero” in the battle to offset rising energy costs and related debt recovery issues. Utilities can improve cash flow by continually adapting to the changing communication needs of customers. The key drivers of satisfaction and customer loyalty are meeting consumers’ need for a multichannel, immediate billing and payment experience, providing important and actionable information to improve financial health.

This conference will bring together utility and industry experts who must daily interact with the billing process and payment systems. They will draw upon their experience to address issues surrounding advances in billing technology and payment processing. 

Learning Outcomes

  • Discuss how technology can make the payment processing easier for consumers
  • Explain how to leverage robotics across your customer service front and back-office operation
  • Discuss how to improve collections, reduce bad debt and enhance customer engagement
  • Discuss how the functionality of a new CIS provides optimization opportunities within billing, payments and collections
  • Address what utilities in North America are doing to bill their complex accounts
  • Explain how utilities can create great workplaces that maximize your team’s engagement and potential
  • Discuss how to leverage new billing channels to improve customer communications
  • Create data governance strategies to improve the billing and payments process

Credits

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EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer 0.9  IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 1.0 CEUs for this event.

Requirements for Successful Completion of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day and be in attendance for the entirety of the course to be eligible for continuing education credit.

Instructional Methods

Case Studies, Panel Discussions and PowerPoint presentations

Agenda

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30 – 8:45 a.m. :: Opening Announcements


8:45 – 9:30 a.m. :: Setting the Stage – Trends in Utility Billing/Payments

This session will set the context, themes, and participatory discussion tone for the conference. Conference chair, Jon Brock will present current trends in the market as it relates to Billing and Payments in the utility industry from recent survey data. Attendees will be invited to provide input regarding key discussion interests to highlight throughout the conference sessions.

Jon Brock, President, Desert Sky Group, LLC


9:30 – 10:15 a.m. :: Improving Payments Through Voice Enabled Devices

AEP is among the first electric companies in the United States to give customers the opportunity to view their account balance, pay their bill, check their energy usage, and get outage status information through Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant voice enabled devices. In this case study, you’ll hear how AEP researched customer goals and behaviors, focused on a prioritized set of features, crafted two-way conversations, and launched this new channel to its customers.

Eric Davis, Digital & User Experience Manager, American Electric Power (AEP)

10:15 – 10:30 a.m. :: Morning Break


10:30 – 11:15 a.m. :: Leveraging Cobb EMC’s new Customer Care and Billing Platform

Cobb EMC went through a CIS upgrade journey a few years ago to leverage the advanced functionality of a new CIS and improve customer satisfaction. In this session, Ross Dicken will share how the new CIS has changed and improved the billing process. These additional topics will be discussed:

  • Leveraging the advanced functionality of the new platform
  • Improvements to the billing and payment statements
  • SmartHub for customers to manage their accounts better
  • Modernizing customer service operations

Ross Dicken, Manager of Member Care Support Services, Cobb EMC


11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. :: How Billing and Payments Can Make or Break the Utility Customer Experience

For many customers, their only interaction with their electric or gas utility is during billing and payment; it’s critical to get those interactions right because they often define the customer experience. Enhancing the customer bill and payment experience may seem like a simple proposition, but utilities often encounter challenges when they forget to include customers in the process. Join us to learn how E Source approaches bill and payment initiatives, get best practices for integrating the customer into your strategy, and learn what’s working to improve the customer experience for other utilities. 

Melanie Wemple, Managing Director, E Source

12:00 – 1:00 p.m. :: Group Luncheon


1:00 – 1:45 p.m. :: The Benefits of Innovative Pre-Payment Programs

In this session, Sheila Pressley will share how JEA’s approximate 20,500 prepay customers consume between 8%-10% less (weather normalized and excluding disconnection periods) than post-paid customers. The energy savings result when customer leverage next-day consumption/cost data to make meaningful changes to control their utility consumption thereby improving collections at the same time. The program’s account notifications, synergy with payment assistance and the availability of arrears management options also produce high customer satisfaction levels.

Sheila Pressley, Director, Customer Revenue Services, JEA


1:45 – 2:30 p.m. :: Reformatting Washington Gas’s Customer eBill Notification

In this presentation, attendees will learn about Washington Gas’s project to reformat their customer eBill notification. As a result of this project, the eBill now includes a radio button to click and make a credit card payment and/or review the pdf version of the customer’s monthly bill. This presentation will also highlight payment and billing options now available in the marketplace.

Anthony Murdock, Director, Customer Billing and Revenue Assurance, Washington Gas

Scott Kimsey, Group Manager, Enterprise & Emerging Acceptance, Worldpay


2:30 – 3:15 p.m. :: Creating Data Governance Strategies for Your Billing & Payments Process

States are coming out with new laws governing what our utility customers can request we do (or don’t do) with their data. In this session, attendees will learn why having a strong Data Governance strategy in place can make adjusting to these new regulations easier, as well as ensuring your business is working proactively instead of reactively.

Liz Thomson, Manager, Process Improvement, Billing, & Quality Control Compliance, Dominion Energy

 

3:15 – 3:30 p.m. :: Afternoon Break


3:30 – 4:15 p.m. :: Successfully Managing in-house Billing Operations and More

This presentation will cover proven methods to successfully developing world-class in-house operations – whether it’s Billing, Credit, Customer Service, or any other function.  Ten important keys to success will be covered: great management, maximizing your most important resource  – people, working with business partners, measuring performance, justifying resources, marketing your services, commitment to quality, redundancy/back-up, continuous learning & improvement, and the 3 “Ps” approach to world class operations. Proven and practical techniques from successful in-house operations will be shared. 

Wes Friesen, President, Solomon Training & Development (ret’d Manager, Portland General Electric)


4:15 – 5:00 p.m. :: Best Practices in Billing/Payments: A Roundtable Discussion

This roundtable discussion will feature utility and industry experts discussing what is being done or considered to improve billing and payments. This interactive panel will respond to inquiries from the moderator and audience on how to help streamline the billing/payment process. This session also gives attendees the opportunity to brainstorm new ideas to develop new customer and billing initiatives at their utilities.

Moderator:

Jon Brock, President, Desert Sky Group, LLC

Panelists:

Liz Thomson, Manager, Process Improvement, Billing, & Quality Control Compliance, Dominion Energy

Linda Tiarks, Customer Information Supervisor, Tucson Electric Power (TEP)

Mark McCarthy, Managing Director, MUFG

James W. Hylton, Jr., Analyst, Georgia Power

5:00 – 6:00 p.m. :: Networking Reception


Wednesday, April 22, 2020

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast


8:30 – 9:15 a.m. :: Tucson Electric Powers New Bill Redesign Project

By analyzing research, TEP identified an area for improvement that would benefit the customers.  As a company, we engaged business unit teams to create ‘their own’ type of bill based on best practice from Chartwell research.  Then we collected information from customers on their likes and dislikes about the bill samples and used that input to create the new bill.  The use of gamification added an innovative element to keep employees engaged during the process and have fun learning key points of information about the bill. We defined metrics and tracked data – and increased J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Scores after the implementation.  Our cross-functional effort was comprehensive, collaborative and leveraged technology to reduce costs and improve the customer experience.

Linda Tiarks, Customer Information Supervisor, Tucson Electric Power (TEP)


9:15 – 10:00 a.m. :: Georgia Power’s Payment Strategy

In December 2019 the Georgia Public Service Commission ruled in favor of allowing Georgia Power to remove all payment fees for their customers. Customers don’t understand why utilities charge fees and Georgia Power has addressed this issue by eliminating them altogether. The driving force behind this change is increased customer satisfaction due to the ease and variety of available payment options. In this session, Jim Hylton will share the following insights of no fees at Georgia Power:

  • Research
  • Planning
  • Implementation

James W. Hylton, Jr., Analyst, Georgia Power

10:00 – 10:15 a.m. :: Morning Break


10:15 – 11:00 a.m. :: Let’s Make Credit Checks a Win-Win for the Utility and the Consumer

Did you know that 19.4 million Americans, representing 8.3% of the adult population, have credit records that cannot be scored by regular commercially available scoring models?  An additional 26 million (11%) are credit invisible.  They have no credit file at all.  That’s 19% of the population that has no access to credit in their lives. In this session, learn how we changed our process to a credit-scoring module that not only drastically increased our credit assessment numbers, but also helps these credit-challenged consumers to overcome this credit nightmare.

Buddy Flake, Credit Manager, Dominion Energy North Carolina


11:00 – 11:45 a.m. :: Improving Customer Experience with Genuine Customer Centricity

 

Total quality, customer satisfaction, customer experience…. These are just a few cross-industry labels for efforts to evolve to a more customer focused business. From low income to large industrial customers, these efforts have all aspired to drive satisfaction, improve loyalty, improve payments and engage customers in new and creative ways. Is Customer Centricity just a new flavor in this long line of craftly branded efforts or is it the last frontier for developing meaningful and sustainable customer relationships.

Pat Ricks, Senior Manager, Customer Experience, Entergy

11:45 a.m. :: Conference Concludes

 

Speakers

  • Jon Brock, President, Desert Sky Group, LLC
  • Eric Davis, Digital & User Experience Manager, American Electric Power (AEP)
  • Ross Dicken, Manager of Member Care Support Services, Cobb EMC
  • Buddy Flake, Credit Manager, Dominion Energy North Carolina
  • Wes Friesen, President, Solomon Training & Development (ret’d Manager, Portland General Electric)
  • James W. Hylton, Jr., Analyst, Georgia Power
  • Scott Kimsey, Group Manager, Enterprise & Emerging Acceptance, Worldpay
  • Mark McCarthy, Managing Director, MUFG
  • Anthony Murdock, Director, Customer Billing and Revenue Assurance, Washington Gas
  • Sheila Pressley, Director, Customer Revenue Services, JEA
  • Pat Ricks, Senior Manager, Customer Experience, Entergy
  • Liz Thomson, Manager, Process Improvement, Billing, & Quality Control Compliance, Dominion Energy
  • Linda Tiarks, Customer Information Supervisor, Tucson Electric Power (TEP)
  • Melanie Wemple, Managing Director, E Source

Location

Atlanta Marriott Suites Midtown

35 14th Street NE

Atlanta, GA 30309

Reserve your room:

please call 1-404-876-8888

click here to book online

Room Block Reserved For:

Nights of April 19 – 21, 2020

Room rate through EUCI:

$198.00 single or double plus applicable taxes
Make your reservations prior to March 30, 2020.

Register

Please Note: Confirmed speakers do not need to register and are encouraged to participate in all sessions of the event. If you are a speaker and have any questions please contact our offices at 1.303.770.8800

EventEarly Bird Before
Friday, April 10, 2020
Standard RateAttendees
Utility Billing and Payments Conference 2020US $ 1195.00 US $ 1395.00

This event has the following related events:

The CRM/CIS Evolution: Transforming your Customer Platform & ExperienceUS $ 895.00 US $ 995.00

*Please note: all attendees of the conference will receive a link to downlaod all presentations that are made available by the presenters. If you cannot attend the conference but would still like a copy of these materials, please consider purchasing the proceedings package listed below

I cannot attend but would like a copy of the proceedings

Proceedings package US $ 495.00

Take advantage of these discounts!

  • Attend the Conference and The CRM/CIS Evolution: Transforming your Customer Platform & Experience and pay US $ 1,995.00 per attendee (save US $ 95.00 each)

Register 3 Send 4th Free!

Any organization wishing to send multiple attendees to these conferences may send 1 FREE for every 3 delegates registered. Please note that all registrations must be made at the same time to qualify.

Cancellation Policy

Your registration may be transferred to a member of your organization up to 24 hours in advance of the event. Cancellations must be received on or before March 20, 2020 in order to be refunded and will be subject to a US $195.00 processing fee per registrant. No refunds will be made after this date. Cancellations received after this date will create a credit of the tuition (less processing fee) good toward any other EUCI event. This credit will be good for six months from the cancellation date. In the event of non-attendance, all registration fees will be forfeited. In case of conference cancellation, EUCIs liability is limited to refund of the event registration fee only. For more information regarding administrative policies, such as complaints and refunds, please contact our offices at 303-770-8800

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