The Vulnerable Customer Leadership Council

Chartwell recently launched the Vulnerable Customer Leadership Council, a new peer-to-peer collaboration group created to address an area of urgency and importance to the industry.

“The consumer data, Voice of the Customer insights, and extensive research we’ve compiled underscore the challenges facing utilities and the need for companies to develop solutions for vulnerable customers,” said Stacey Bailey, Chartwell Vice President.

“The general mindset going into the pandemic was that the industry needed to ensure all customers – particularly those most vulnerable – would be able to sustain themselves until things got better and we returned to normal,” Bailey said. “We didn’t expect to move directly into an inflationary economy where prices are skyrocketing for everything, including energy. Although vulnerable customers have always been a business and moral priority across the industry, this sequence of events has led to a growing challenge that has thrust this issue to the forefront for many utilities nationwide.”

According to Chartwell consumer data published in a report for members of our Insight Center, only 51% of customers who paid a utility bill late in the past year in order to pay other bills said they were aware of financial assistance to pay their utility bill, demonstrating a considerable opportunity for utility engagement.

Chartwell is leveraging a new working group format that brings together utility leaders to problem solve; share strategies, new ideas, best practices, and lessons learned; and collaborate on key issues surrounding the utility industry’s most vulnerable customers.

Chartwell Senior Advisor Pat Ricks is leading the Vulnerable Customer Leadership Council. After a 36-year career with Entergy, much of it focused on low-income research and program development, Pat has joined Chartwell to provide his expertise to this group.

To learn more about the benefits of being a member of the new Vulnerable Customer Leadership Council, please email Tim Herrick, Director of Sales.