Performance results generally don’t elicit much excitement or interest from anyone other than the parents of school-age children, stock brokers/shareholders or the rare employee groups whose attention is regularly fixed on the measure of consumer confidence and satisfaction their patrons have in and with the services they provide.
United employees belong to a corps that cares a great deal about how their work to provide exceptional service value is judged by those they serve.
To that aim, the 89 out of a possible 100 points given by cooperative members in the second quarterly assessment of the 2016 American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) showed again that there is always room for improvement, but also that members feel the service value they receive is noteworthy.
The latest member assessment in the independent third-party quarterly survey places United among the nation’s highest performers in member satisfaction, not only in comparison with all types of business classes, but especially in the electric utility sector.
The cooperative’s member service goals since its consolidation in 2000 have been straightforward—to meet or exceed member expectations in every area of United’s service delivery.
United measures satisfaction each quarter to ensure members continue to receive a level of service that’s second to none. The ACSI, sponsored by the American Society for Quality and administered by the business school at the University of Michigan, tracks consumer satisfaction levels across 43 industries and more than 200 corporations.
Learning how members feel about the overall service value they receive from United Cooperative Services has always played a vital role in the cooperative’s aim to continually improve and exceed member service expectations.
Coupled with member feedback obtained through public speaking engagements, a succession of system-wide community and focus group meetings and its annual membership meeting, the cooperative relies heavily on the ACSI survey as an honest and timely means for obtaining the membership’s unvarnished assessment of timely means for obtaining the membership’s unvarnished assessment of the cooperative’s service quality.
Over the past four quarters, the cooperative has netted an overall average of 89.5, which is an industry-leading satisfaction rating.
“Like so many other professional assessments or achievements, staying at or near the top is a tough row to hoe,” said United CEO Cameron Smallwood. “But thanks to the caliber of United’s 152 employees, this cooperative is never convinced additional improvements can’t be found. And I can easily assure our members that our employee group never stops looking for new and better ways to provide an enjoyable service experience, as well as to add service value that can’t be found anywhere else,” he said.
“Beyond our members’ awareness of our perpetual drive to provide the most reliable service at affordable rates, we believe our member satisfaction scores reflect an appreciation for the steps we’ve taken to keep our members informed about all aspects of their cooperative’s day-to-day service initiatives, as well as for how our work stacks up against others in the electric industry,” Smallwood said.
“We’re proud of our record in member satisfaction because every good grade can be attributed to our adherence to the cooperative business model: to serve our member-owners the very best we can,” he said.