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PR5 - Practices related to customer satisfaction, including results of surveys measuring customer satisfaction

External customer satisfaction tracking for AEP and its seven operating companies is measured either on a quarterly or semi-annual basis. Residential, Commercial, and Call Center Transactional surveys are fielded quarterly. Key Accounts surveys are administered semi-annually.

Residential, Commercial, Call Center Transactional, and Key Accounts surveys are administered via telephone interviews conducted by third party market research vendors. Use of independent third parties to field these surveys adds to the impartiality and Credibility of the data collected as well as providing substantial opportunities to obtain utility industry benchmarking. Residential customer satisfaction surveys are fielded using a random selection of telephone numbers based on telephone area code and prefixes within AEP’s service territory. Telephone exchanges linked to cellular carriers are automatically excluded. National “ do not call” lists as well as specific AEP “do not call” lists are also integrated into the research vendor’s sample management processes. Quarterly quotas are set at the individual state level. Commercial customer satisfaction surveys are also fielded using a similar methodology but the sample is provided by AEP. This sample consists of commercial accounts with demands of 750 KW or less. Call Center Transactional customer surveys are administered using completed transaction records obtained nightly from each of AEP’s six call centers. Quotas are set at the individual AEP call center. Key Accounts surveys are administered primarily via telephone with facsimile and internet options available. AEP provides a random sample of its 750 KW demand or greater commercial and industrial customers. Quotas are set at the individual AEP account manager level.

All four customer satisfaction tracking surveys provide opportunity for those customers to provide feedback to AEP, either anonymously or identified by actual customer. In order to be tagged to a specific customer, the customer must specifically consent to share their identity with AEP. Customer survey feedback is both in the form of responses to quantitative (scaled) survey items as well as qualitative (open-ended) comments. The three quarterly surveys contain a ‘triage’ capability where, if the customer wishes AEP to contact them regarding the source of their dissatisfaction, customer concern forms are generated and communicated to AEP overnight for immediate entry into AEP’s customer complaint database and follow-up. The Key Accounts survey also provides a similar feedback mechanism in the event that a very dissatisfied customer is surveyed and agrees to share their particular issues with AEP. Additional modalities of capturing customer feedback include comments provided to the company through the AEP.com internet site, individual AEP operating company internet sites, e-mail communications, letters and telephone calls. Complaints or issues needing remediation are entered into a formal complaints tracking database to ensure timely and thorough follow-up.

Summary results for calendar year 2011 are shown in the table below

AEP Customer Satisfaction Results
2011 Survey Results
Survey Type Percent Satisfied Quartile Ranking vs. National Peer Group
Residential 83.3% 2nd
Commercial 88.0% 1st
Managed/Key Accounts 78.4% 1st
Call Center Transactions 84.1% NA

Percent Satisfied:

Residential and Commercial:  Ratings of Very Satisfied and Somewhat Satisfied on a five point satisfaction scale on the question “Based on your overall experience with AEP’s service,
how satisfied are you with having them as your electric company?”

Key Accounts:  Ratings of 8 to 10 on a 1 (Very Dissatisfied) to a 10 (Very Satisfied) rating scale on the question “Overall, how satisfied are you with the full package of electrical services provided by AEP?”

Call Center Transactions:  Ratings of 6 to 10 on a 0 (Extremely Dissatisfied) to a 10 (Extremely Satisfied) rating scale on the question “In summary, thinking about your entire experience with AEP
from the time you called until the request was completed, how satisfied were you with the entire transaction experience?”

Quartile Ranking vs. National Peer Group:

Residential, Commercial, and Key Accounts:  Quartile ranking reflects placement relative to national peer group of electric and electric/gas utilities.  The members of the benchmarking group differ by survey. 

Call Center Transactions:  National benchmarking is not available for this survey.


For more information, also see the Energy Security, Reliability & Growth discussion in AEP’s Corporate Sustainability Report.