Content

A  |  B  |  C  |  D  |  E  |  F  |  G  |  H  |  I  |  J  |  K  |  L  |  M

N  |  O  |  P  |  Q  |  R  |  S  |  T  |  U  |  V  |  W  |  X  |  Y  |  Z

A

abandoned interactions: the number of interactions that are disconnected by customers while they are waiting in queue to speak to an agent

abandonment: see abandoned interactions

absenteeism: percentage of unscheduled days off

activities: the techniques, tactics, and strategies performed to improve the customer’s experience; generally, activities are externally focused

adaptive design: a mobile-design approach that adjusts a website to fit a predetermined set of screen and device sizes

AHT: see average handle time

ASA: see average speed to answer

average handle time (AHT): the time it takes a customer service representative at a call center to answer a call, handle the call, and finish the paperwork once they complete the call

average speed to answer (ASA): the time it takes a customer service representative to answer an incoming call

B

balanced scorecard (BSC): a performance-management tool that includes financial and nonfinancial measures to provide a concise, holistic view of organizational performance

brand perception survey: a survey that helps a utility understand how the market views its brand, which brand attributes customers prefer, and how they rank different products and services in the marketplace

brand pillars: the key attributes or adjectives that describe and define a utility’s identity in the marketplace

brand promise: a short statement by a company that outlines the distinct qualities, values, and goals that customers can expect during their relationship with that company

breakpoints: predefined thresholds in a performance indicator that, when encountered, trigger an intervention, corrective action, or other kind of response

BSC: see balanced scorecard

budget billing: a billing program in which a customer’s bills are averaged over a period of time—usually a year—so that the customer pays the same amount each month; a utility typically recalculates and adjusts a customer’s monthly billing amount on an annual basis to reflect actual usage

C

call handle time: see average handle time

CCO: see chief customer officer

CE: see customer experience

CEM: see customer experience management

CES: see Customer Effort Score

change management: using well-defined processes, tools, and methods to manage the human requirements and impacts of organizational or cultural change

channel: a means through which a utility and its customers interact—for example, mobile app, mobile web, text message, web, phone, interactive voice response system (IVR), and in person

channel containment: a measure of a utility’s ability to handle a customer transaction within the initiated channel; for example, a customer inquiry that begins with a text message is resolved with a text message and does not require phone calls, emails, or other forms of interaction

chat: a web-based instant-message application that allows the customer and customer service representative to communicate in real time

chief customer officer (CCO): an executive-level role that manages all customer transactions and aims to improve the customer experience

conversion funnel: a visual representation of the percentage of customers who begin and complete a task

CRM: see customer relationship management system

cross-channel: experiences that can occur in various channels in a differentiated manner

cross-channel analytics: a measure of the continuity and consistency of customer experience across channels

CSAT: see customer satisfaction score

culture: employees’ beliefs and assumptions about what’s expected of them, created through shared learning and experience over time

current state: a snapshot of current operational processes

Customer Effort Score (CES): a measure of how much effort a customer expends to address an issue or execute a transaction with a utility

customer experience (CE or CX): the rational and emotional perceptions customers develop as they interact with a utility

customer experience management (CEM or CXM): the discipline of understanding, planning, implementing, and optimizing customer interactions within a utility to generate cost efficiencies and deliver excellent service

customer experience strategy: a utility’s strategy—including leadership, human resources, technology, management, design, processes, and other elements—to deliver the company’s desired customer experience

customer information system: a system that houses customer data related to billing and that the utility uses to create and manage customer billing interactions

customer insights: actionable conclusions derived from analyzing customer behaviors, interactions, and feedback

customer intent statement: a clear articulation of what customers will feel throughout their relationship with the utility

customer journey map: see journey map

customer life cycle: the phases a customer goes through in their relationship with a utility

customer loyalty: see loyalty

customer promise: see customer intent statement

customer relationship management (CRM) system: software that enables companies to manage and analyze detailed records of customer interactions in all forms

customer satisfaction score (CSAT): a measure of how satisfied customers are with their interactions with a utility

customer service: the people, processes, and systems that a utility employs to engage directly with its customers for energy provision, billing, payment, issue resolution, and other transactions

customer service standards: commitments to the level of service or quality of experience provided relative to the utility’s pillars or its promises to its customers

customer touchpoints: see touchpoints

CX: see customer experience

CX leader: a state of CX maturity in which a utility engages in more than 50 percent of recommended CX activities and has more than 50 percent of the recommended organizational support for CX

CX opportunity: a state of CX maturity in which a utility has more than 50 percent of the recommended organizational support for CX but engages in less than 50 percent of recommended CX activities

CX struggle: a state of CX maturity in which a utility engages in more than 50 percent of recommended CX activities but has less than 50 percent of the recommended organizational support for CX

CX void: a state of CX maturity in which a utility engages in less than 50 percent of recommended CX activities and has less than 50 percent of the recommended organizational support for CX

CXM: see customer experience management

D

descriptive metrics: tools that measure what actually happens during a customer’s interaction with a utility—for example, time spent on website

detractor: survey respondent who gives a rating between 0 and 6 (on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 means not at all likely and 10 means extremely likely) to the question: “How likely are you to recommend this company to your friends and family?”

E

e-bill: electronic bill (see also paperless bill)

EFM: see enterprise feedback management

employee engagement: the degree to which a utility recruits, develops, and retains employees to create a culture that reinforces customer-centric behaviors and advances the customer experience strategy

employee experience: the rational and emotional perceptions employees develop as they work in an organization

enterprise feedback management (EFM): the holistic, closed-loop process of listening to, analyzing, and acting upon the implied and expressed needs, desires, hopes, and preferences of customers and employees for the purpose of designing and delivering an optimal customer experience

F

FCR: see first-call resolution and first-contact resolution

first-call resolution: a measure of a utility’s ability to resolve a customer’s issue during the first call, whether via interactive voice response system (IVR) or live agent

first-contact resolution: a measure of a utility’s ability to resolve a customer’s issue during the first contact, irrespective of channel (for example, interactive voice response system [IVR], web, mobile, chat, live agent, or text message)

full-time equivalent (FTE): the equivalent of one person working full-time, even though several staff members may contribute to the work being done

FTE: see full-time equivalent

future state: a forward-looking picture that envisions how a journey or process should operate to provide an improved customer experience

G

gap analysis: an examination of the steps needed to move from current state to future state

H

handle time: see average handle time

I

inbound interactions: customer-initiated interactions with a utility

interactive voice response system (IVR): technology that enables a utility to define, implement, and monitor automated processes to address customer inquiries and issues and to route calls to the most effective destination

IVR: see interactive voice response system

J

journey map: a diagram of the steps a customer goes through to resolve an issue or conduct a transaction with a utility

K

key moments of truth (KMOTs): see moments of truth

key performance indicators (KPIs): the metrics a utility determines are most closely correlated to achieving organizational goals

KMOTs: see moments of truth

KPIs: see key performance indicators

L

listening post: a tool used to capture voice-of-the-customer or voice-of-the-employee feedback

loyalist: a survey respondent who gives a rating between 9 and 10 (on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 means not at all likely and 10 means extremely likely) to the question: “How likely are you to recommend this company to a friend or family member?” (see also promoter)

loyalty: a measure of the likelihood that, given a choice, a customer will continue to do business with a utility

M

mobile-specific website: a website designed and formatted for navigation on a mobile device (not a desktop or laptop) that is separate from the main website; it may have a different URL than the main website

moments of truth: major points of interaction that occur at a time and place that can make or break a utility’s relationship with its customers, can increase or decrease the utility’s brand value, and can enhance or detract from customer satisfaction and the customer experience

multichannel: experiences that can cross between channels with some information transferring with them

N

natural-language processing: a system that understands or responds using conversational language

Net Promoter Score (NPS): a measurement that indicates the proportion of a utility’s customers who are “promoters” of the utility as compared to the proportion who are passively satisfied (“passives”) or actively dissatisfied (“detractors”). Note: “NPS,” “Net Promoter,” and “Net Promoter Score” are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems Inc , Bain & Company Inc., and Fred Reichheld.

NPS: see Net Promoter Score. Note: “NPS,” “Net Promoter,” and “Net Promoter Score” are trademarks of Satmetrix Systems Inc., Bain & Company Inc., and Fred Reichheld.

O

omnichannel: experiences that are seamless across channels where data is not lost

organizational culture: see culture

outcome metrics: tools that measure a customer’s rational and emotional reactions to the sum of an entire experience with a brand or service

P

pain points: interactions, tasks, or processes that customers find frustrating, annoying, or difficult

paperless bill: a bill sent electronically, typically supplants the paper bill (see also e-bill)

passive: a survey respondent who gives a rating between 7 and 8 (on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 means not at all likely and 10 means extremely likely) to the question: “How likely are you to recommend this company to a friend or family member?”

perceptual metrics: tools that measure the customer’s perception of how well a company performed compared to their expectations

personas: groups of customers whose behaviors and preferences simplify into a character that is predictive of the larger group; personas, as relatable archetypes, embody the authentic actions and trends of many customers or employees and portray the common vision of a targeted group

phone soft skills: interpersonal skills such as active listening and empathy that help customer service agents better serve customers

post-transaction survey: a survey customers take after interacting with the utility through a contact center or walk-in center agent (see also transactional survey)

preference center: a system that manages customer communication preferences and allows customers to enroll into outbound communication

promoter: a survey respondent who gives a rating between 9 and 10 (on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 means not at all likely and 10 means extremely likely) to the question: “How likely are you to recommend this company to a friend or family member?” (see also loyalist)

Q

QA: see quality assurance

QA form: a checklist or form that quality assurance monitors use to ensure that an agent-customer interaction meets quality standards

quality assurance (QA): a discipline that examines how agents process interactions from the company’s perspective or the customer’s perspective and ensures that the approach meets predetermined quality criteria

R

responsive design: a mobile-design approach that allows a website to fluidly change and respond to fit any screen or device size

return on investment (ROI): a measure of the financial or nonfinancial benefit(s) of a given investment of resources

roadmap: a plan that aligns short-term and long-term projects and initiatives to deliver on the goals defined in the customer experience strategy

ROI: see return on investment

S

speech analytics: extracting insights from customer interactions by transforming spoken language into usable data; usually applied to calls with customers

support: the techniques, tactics, and strategies used to embed customer-centric mind and behaviors into the culture and operations of the organization; generally, support is internally focused

T

top-two box: responses rated between 9 or 10 on a 10-point scale

touchpoints: points in a utility’s processes that directly affect or impact the customer

transactional survey: a survey customers take after completing a transaction with the utility (see also post-transaction survey)

U

user experience: a person’s rational and emotional perception of a human-computer interaction

V

virtual hold: a service that allows customers who are placed on hold to request that the utility call back at a later time

VOC: see voice of the customer

VOE: see voice of the employee

voice of the customer (VOC): the implied and expressed needs, desires, hopes, and preferences of a utility’s customers; utilities use this information to design and deliver the optimal customer experience efficiently and effectively (also, the process of gathering these inputs)

voice of the employee (VOE): the implied and expressed needs, desires, hopes, and preferences of a utility’s employees; utilities use this information to design and deliver the optimal customer experience efficiently and effectively (also, the process of gathering these inputs)

W

walk-in center: a physical customer-facing location staffed by a utility representative; could include locations such as a district office

word of mouth: the process by which customers share their experience to encourage others to engage or disengage with a brand, product, or service

word-of-mouth index: a metric determined by asking the customer, “How likely are you to actively discourage others from using this brand, service, or product?” Created by Foresee Results, the index subtracts the 9s and 10s that customers give to the discourage question from the 9s and 10s that they give to the NPS question “How likely are you to recommend this company to your friends and family?”

X

(No entries)

Y

(No entries)

Z

(No entries)

Contributing Authors

Director, Customer Engagement Solutions

Jeffrey Daigle is an expert on contact center operations, customer experience, channel design, operations, digital engagement, and journey mapping....

Lead Analyst, Customer Engagement Solutions

Eryc Eyl is committed to improving the experience of work and business for employees and customers. His expertise in customer experience, employee...

Senior Analyst, Customer Engagement Solutions

Keenan Samuelson focuses on strategies to enhance the utility customer experience. He spends the majority of his time researching how to optimize...