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10/21/2010
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In their own words: Mt. Wheeler Power

Don’t Hang Up!
This is an important message from Mt. Wheeler Power

By Christina Sawyer

One of the most cost-effective ways Mt. Wheeler Power has to inform its membership about upcoming power outages is to use our 24/7 contact center. Cooperative Response Center Inc. (CRC) has two locations, one in Dunlap, Tennessee, the other in Austin, Minnesota. CRC is a nationwide, cooperatively owned and operated, 24/7 contact center, central station and software provider. Mt. Wheeler’s membership with CRC began after contract employee Fannie Hexem retired.

In the past, if you had an after-hours emergency and you called Fannie, she would call out one of Mt. Wheeler’s crew members to respond to your needs. CRC has been able to merge the benefits of the personalized service Mt. Wheeler members are accustomed to while offering the efficiencies provided by technology.

CRC provides services primarily to rural electric utilities, including after-hours dispatch and around-the-clock customer care. This modern technology also helps Mt. Wheeler efficiently reach our membership in cases of scheduled large location outages.

Members have become so intolerant of cold calls from automated services that your initial response is to hang up or delete the message without fully listening to it. This may have happened in the past when Mt. Wheeler attempted to reach you through its call center.

If you receive an automated call “Hello, this is Mt. Wheeler Power with an important message,” please take a moment to listen to the message. You will be provided with relevant information about an outage that directly affects you. In most cases, you will be told how long to expect to be without power and, if the information is available, the cause of the outage.

Some common reasons for a scheduled outage include routine maintenance or needed repairs caused by bird or weather damage.

CRC also is available to take your calls after hours. When you call after regular business hours your call is immediately routed to the call center, where knowledgeable staff members can address your concerns regarding electrical emergencies. It will dispatch crew members and follow up with you, if requested, to assure your power has been restored. It is helpful that you provide important key information to avoid delays in getting help to you as quickly as possible, including your account number, physical address and, most importantly, your meter number. All of this information can be found on your billing statement.

Keeping your contact information updated is crucial. If you are calling from a phone number Mt. Wheeler has on file, your call automatically will sync with your account information, considerably shortening the response time.

The mission: CRC is a leading, employee-focused contact center, central station, and software provider enhancing the services of its members throughout the U.S. by focusing on the human side of technology.

As a member of Touchstone Energy, Mt. Wheeler has found the values of CRC mirror its own as a member-driven company, putting service excellence in the forefront.


This article has been republished with permission from Mt. Wheeler Power. For more information, visit http://www.mwpower.net/.