Today, October 5, is the inaugural National Energy Efficiency Day. It’s a day for utilities to share information on their efficiency programs and talk about how they’re partnering with communities to drive down energy consumption.

October 5 is also CX Day, a global celebration of the companies and professionals who create great experiences for their customers. Businesses should view CX Day as an opportunity to recognize that our success is dictated by how well we deliver value to our customers.

It’s serendipitous that these two celebrations are happening simultaneously this year because collectively they create Customer-Side Management Day! For E Source, Customer-Side Management™ (CSM™) represents the intersection between demand-side management (DSM), distributed energy resources, and customer experience (CX). These celebrations help serve as a reminder that there are pivotal interconnections between these three areas, as consumers don’t view their experiences as separate interactions, but rather as components of an overall brand relationship.

DSM to CSM graphic

Efficiency is a fantastic starting point for any utility when it comes to CSM. Utilities that deliver an excellent customer experience can drive more than just kilowatt-hour savings; they can create experiences that improve customer satisfaction, generate positive word-of-mouth promotion, and enhance the likelihood that customers will participate in utility DSM programs. When customers react positively to interactions they have with their utility, they’re more likely to pursue additional interactions. And as E Source research has shown, past DSM program participation is often the leading indicator of future participation. And continued participation can markedly boost the cost-effectiveness of future utility programs.

As we’ve seen play out in other markets, customers want choices and tailored solutions. They want the option of joining their neighbors in the solar revolution; of outfitting their homes with smart home energy management (HEM) technologies; of buying electric vehicles (EVs) and charging them when and where they like; and of deploying battery storage to offset the additional costs associated with time-of-use rates. And now, some of those same players are capitalizing on customers’ desire for choice and are offering solar, HEM, EV, and battery solutions that are disassociated from the utility industry. All of these conditions are giving customers an endless array of choices on how, when, and potentially whether they want to engage with their utility.

We think about energy efficiency, CX, and the relationship between people and the grid every day. Shouldn’t every day be CSM Day?

Looking to get started with Customer-Side Management? Take the E Source Customer-Side Management Assessment and send us your tweets @Esource with the hashtag #CXday2016 or #CSMday2016.

Contributing Authors

Chief strategy officer

Matt Burks oversees new product development, strategic partnerships, and corporate strategy for E Source. His years advising North America...