July 11, 2011

Enhancements to Customer Service

In listening to customers’ feedback, Des Moines Water Works has initiated three new programs in the past year to bring more value to our customers.  All of these programs are technology driven and have been implemented in response to customer requests.

The “E-Statement” program began in early 2010 with roughly 1,000 customers signing up the first month.  Currently, there are just short of 4,000 customers taking advantage of this program.  “E-Statements” is a way for customers to receive their billing statements electronically via an email from DMWW, cancelling the mailing of a statement to their address.  The email that is sent to the customer indicates the amount due and the date charges become past due.  They then may logon to their account through www.dmww.com to view the entire statement, make payments, view consumption history, etc.  Customers who use E-statements save the utility money in paper, envelopes, postage, etc.  At our current level of 4,000 users, the utility saves $20,000 each year, which helps us keep water rates low.  Consider subscribing to E-statements—it’s convenient, protects against identity theft, reduces your home’s “bill clutter,” and saves the environment!

In February of 2011, DMWW began accepting “E-Check” or electronic payment from a checking or savings account.  Customers may pay by check through their account on www.dmww.com, over the telephone via our automated phone system, or with a live customer service representative over the phone.  The customer provides the bank routing number, bank account number, and amount to be paid and DMWW electronically debits their specified account.  There is no charge for this service and over 8,000 customers took advantage of this program in June of 2011 alone!  E-checks have reduced credit card payments by 50%, which has significantly reduced the utility’s costs, as credit cards are more expensive for the utility to process.  Other payment methods accepted are cash, check, credit/debit card, and money orders.

In early 2010, DMWW also began making pre-termination courtesy calls to customers scheduled to have their water service terminated.  Customers continue to receive termination notices in the mail and are encouraged to respond promptly to the notice.  The calls are just one more service DMWW now provides to assist customers in managing their account and avoid service termination.   These pre-termination courtesy calls have been very popular with customers and have helped the utility reduce service terminations by 30%.  Ensure your telephone information is up-to-date by calling us at (515) 283-8700.

Des Moines Water Works continues to strive to deliver programs and options that are valued by our customers.   What’s on your mind—what could we do to improve our level of service to you?

Posted by: Cory Waddell No Comments
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