For the fourth consecutive year, EPB has been ranked as the best mid-sized electric utility in the South by J.D. Power consumer surveys.
The Chattanooga utility, which provides electricity to more than 160,000 customers and internet, video or phone service through EPB Fiber Optics to nearly 104,000 homes and businesses, ranked highest among 20 comparable utilities in the J.D. Power's consumer rating for customer satisfaction. EPB's overall scores were the second highest for any utility in the J.D. Power nationwide study.
Among midsize utilities in the South, EPB was tops with a customer satisfaction score of 804 out of 1,000. By comparison, TVA's other major distributors scored lower, including Huntsville Utilities at 704, Nashville Electric Service at 703, Knoxville Utilities at 692, and Memphis Light Gas & Water at 666.
Among large electric utilities rated in the South, Georgia Power Co. ranked No. 1 with a score of 766.
"The JD Power Award is a tribute to the expertise and effort of EPB employees," EPB President David Wade said in a statement Thursday. "This community inspires us to do our best every day to deliver world-class technology with the highest standards of personalized service."
Overall customer satisfaction was up for most electric utility residential customers in 2019 with improved reliability and community service efforts, according to the annual J.D. Power customer satisfaction study.
"Utility customers want their power to stay on and to see their utility involved in their local communities and the top performers do an excellent job of both," said John Hazen, senior director of the Energy Practice at J.D. Power. "Many of the lower performing brands need to do a better job of communicating their community involvement efforts such as employee volunteering and local donations/sponsorships. This communication has shown to affect consumer awareness and satisfaction."
Outgoing EPB chairman Joe Ferguson said the rating underscores EPB's success in delivering power and broadband services and EPB's ongoing efforts to develop improved services through its fiber optic network and research collaborating with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
"I take comfort as I prepare to depart EPB that our senior management and overall team are well prepared to continue moving the organization forward in a groundbreaking fashion.," Ferguson said.
The 2019 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study is based on responses from 103,481 online interviews conducted from July 2018 through May 2019 among residential customers of the 142 largest electric utility brands across the United States, which represent more than 101 million households.