Ikeja Electric (IE), a Nigerian power distribution company has launched a WhatsApp bot to help resolve customers complaints and provide 24-hour customer support service.
According to the company, the WhatsApp Chatbot will work as a regular chat interface that enables seamless two-way communication between customers and the DisCo.
Speaking on the initiative, Head of Corporate Communications for Ikeja Electric, Felix Ofulue, explained that the new service is part of a major push by the DisCo to deliver optimum and quality experience to its customers through technology.
“IE as a business is following through with our digital transformation initiative to deliver optimal quality customer service using technology. WhatsApp, on the other hand, is a platform that has millions of users and huge adoption for customer resolution. Our goal is to ensure that our customers are able to reach us on WhatsApp as an easy medium of communication and to ensure we meet our target of delivering excellent service”.
He added that the goal is to ensure that customers are able to reach the company through the platform. He further clarified WhatsApp with its millions of users has a huge potential for customer resolution.
How to use Ikeja Electric WhatsApp chatbot
IE WhatsApp Chatbot is easily accessible. You can start using it by simply adding the dedicated WhatsApp Chatbot number 09088951626 to your phone contacts.
IK WhatsApp Chatbot is a product of a strategic relationship between IE and Infobip, a leading global cloud solutions provider.
To request for a service or make a complaint, you can simply message the Chatbot number saying anything from ‘Hey’ to ‘Hello’ and the bot will respond with a message greeting you and asking for the service you want.
The chatbot provides 12 service options to choose from. You can check your account details, bills and supply availability (number of electricity hours per month). You can also report a fault or in case of energy theft, make a complaint, confirm your payment and request for new connections or meter.
IE has over 800,000 customers within Lagos metropolis
Other services it offers include, information about how to pay bills, customer care channels, frequently asked questions (FAQs) among others. However, you cannot call the number since it is only reachable through WhatsApp chat.
According to Ofulue, the WhatsApp Chatbot will augment its existing customer touchpoints, will be available to receive multiple queries and promptly respond with relevant information to various customers at the same time.
He added that the service will further optimize the Call Centre resources and also enhance the customer experience as the solution is capable of personalizing conversations.
The chatbot doesn’t take complaints but tells you how to
To make a complaint, reply to the chatbot request with ‘5’. It will then ask if you have a prepaid or postpaid account. Depending on your reply, it will ask if the complaint is relating to either account, meter, payment or tarriff.
Clicking on account will show 5 most probable requests from adjustment of billing and tariff to suspension of account. There is also an option if the above complaints are not what you want.
Selecting suspension of billing gave me instruction on how to email the Disco to suspend my bill and the condition for suspension like having no outstanding bills. This shows that the chatbot won’t necessarily solve or report your complain it will only instruct you on how to make the complaint.
Generally, the chatbot gives you access to necessary information you should know about your electricity account but won’t necessarily take your complaint which raises a big question about its effectiveness.
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