When EnergyUnited was established as North Carolina’s newest energy cooperative in 1998, we made a promise: To provide you, our member-owners, with reliable energy services at the lowest possible cost. We’re proud to have kept that promise through the ebb and flow of market demands.
So how have we done it? What goes into controlling end-user energy costs? Here’s how the hardworking employees in our Customer Care, Information Technology (IT), Finance, Wholesale Power Supply and Operations departments work together to answer the bell for low-cost energy, day in and day out.
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (IT)
Options and accessibility are crucial to controlling costs in IT. With that in mind, we continuously vet new technologies and bring them to the co-op if they present an opportunity to make life easier for members, customers and employees. Examples include self-service payment options on our website and mobile apps in the field so our linemen can provide real-time data when it matters most.
The EnergyUnited Finance Department keeps costs low through three key initiatives. First, our Purchasing Coordinator keeps tabs on industry supply to ensure that we acquire all materials at a great value. Second, we audit and analyze every invoice, looking for better, more cost-effective ways to conduct business. Third, we monitor the industry’s interest rates to make sure we never overpay.
In Customer Care, our goal is simple: Improve the quality of life of our members by delivering exceptional service while helping them save time and money. Our expanded online services make it easy for members to view and pay their bills. EnergyAdvisor helps members understand and lower their energy usage levels. And if they prefer to drop off a payment, our kiosks are available 24/7.
In addition to improving daily processes, Operations focuses on protecting the environment. In fact, the two often go hand in hand. By June 2019, for example, we’re working to increase electronic payments by 40%, thus reducing operating costs and paper waste. Similar eco-friendly initiatives include the introduction of Electric Vehicle (EV) programs to support rising member interest and primary grid sensors in the field.
WHOLESALE POWER SUPPLY
Wholesale’s primary purpose is to negotiate and administer a favorable long-term supply of reliable power for our members. To accomplish this, we meticulously manage our power purchase portfolio, create optionality in our portfolio for new cost-effective resources, including renewables, and follow a board-approved hedging policy to mitigate long-term exposure to natural gas price fluctuations.
Learn more about EnergyUnited in "Getting to know your Co-op."