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Opower Expands Platform to Address Customer Care

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Opower (NYSE:OPWR) , the global leader in cloud-based software for the utility industry, announced the next generation of its customer engagement platform: Opower 6. With its sixth generation release, Opower expands its offerings to include customer care while improving core tools and analytics.

Customer satisfaction and cost to serve are critical to both the top and bottom lines for utilities. Globally, utilities spend $30 billion a year on customer operations, with the largest expenditures in billing and call center operations. Despite this massive investment, research shows that customer interactions have room for improvement. In particular, billing is a pain point for both customers and utilities. Opower’s first customer care offering, Billing Suite, focuses on reducing high bill call volume and call center handle time, while increasing customer satisfaction. In early tests, clients using these products have reduced billing related calls by up to 19 percent.

Opower also announced that Puget Sound Energy (PSE) will be the first utility to deploy Opower’s Customer Care solution. “PSE is embarking on a multi-year strategy to improve each customer touch point and increase awareness of opportunities for customers to save energy and money,” said Jason Teller, Vice President of Customer Solutions at PSE. “We have worked with Opower since 2008 to engage customers in order to meet our energy efficiency goals. We are excited to extend our partnership with them to inject personalized insights into other touch points such as unusual usage alerts, seasonal readiness, and eBills to drive energy efficiency program participation and increase customer satisfaction.”

“We know that customer engagement is different for utilities, and we are partnering with our clients to upgrade the entire customer experience,” said Opower CEO Dan Yates at PowerUp, the company’s annual user conference. “We believe there is tremendous untapped value in data generated by utility CIS systems and our customer care solution reflects our focus on unlocking that value. We have years of experience analyzing energy data and a mature platform, and as a result we are uniquely positioned to help our clients increase customer satisfaction while reducing their cost to serve.”

The Billing Suite is Opower’s first Customer Care offering. It features timely notices and powerful analytics that allow utilities to improve satisfaction and lower cost to serve when customers receive a high bill. Specifically, the Billing Suite includes:

  • High Bill Alerts that let customers know when they are trending towards a high bill and how they can adjust their energy use before the end of the billing period. Alerts can be delivered to both non-AMI and AMI customers and enable utilities to proactively resolve customer questions.
  • eBill Notifications that offer an enhanced experience for customers signed up for utility e-billing programs by providing helpful context about the main drivers of their energy use. The notifications also give utilities an opportunity to market relevant programs and services.
  • Billing Advisor which arms utility call center reps with personalized insights to help them have more productive and satisfying calls with customers, which can help increase customer satisfaction and lower average call times.

In addition to the new Customer Care solution, Opower 6 includes a broad set of upgrades to Opower’s industry-leading platform that provide best in class tools and analytics to all clients. With the release, Opower’s segmentation and targeting capabilities will become available to all clients, enhanced customer intelligence tools will give clients the ability to more easily track the progress of their Opower programs, and new customer level analytics such as program propensity scoring will help utilities better target customers for participation in non-Opower programs.

About Opower
Opower (NYSE:OPWR) is an enterprise software company that is transforming the way utilities engage with their customers. Opower’s customer engagement platform enables utilities to reach their customers at moments that matter through proactive and digitized communications that drive energy savings, increase customer engagement and satisfaction, and lower customer operation costs. Opower’s software has been deployed to more than 95 utility partners around the world and reaches more than 50 million households and businesses. For more information, please visit www.opower.com and follow us on Twitter at @Opower.

Forward-looking Statements
This release contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding benefits from the use of Opower’s solutions. Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Opower represent the Company’s views as of the date of this press release. These forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions. While the Company may elect to update these statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so.

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