By Foster Obi
Nigeria’s leading electricity distribution company, Ikeja Electric Plc (IE) has introduced its electronic billing (e-billing) platform, which enables customers to receive electricity bills promptly and conveniently, via channels such as SMS, USSD, email, IE Bill portal and IE mobile Application.
The e-billing initiative is in continuation of Ikeja Electric’s desire to leverage innovation and technology to improve customer experience. It is designed to deliver electronic bills directly to the customer thereby eradicating challenges such as misplaced bills or delayed delivery and other issues which are associated with distribution of physical bills.
Announcing the service, IE explained that soon e-bills will be the dominant mode of bill delivery considering its numerous advantages as well as the company’s mass metering of customers across its network.
The Head of Corporate Communications for Ikeja Electric, Felix Ofulue, said: “So what we have done with e-billing is to create different platforms through which post-paid customers can easily access their bills”.
“As a forward thinking organization, we understand that a critical element of product development is customer convenience and ease to access. This is what we intend to achieve by providing post-paid customers with easier options of receiving monthly bills via SMS, e-mail, USSD, IE Bill Portal and IE mobile app”, he said.
According to Ofulue “we believe that our customers appreciate innovative services that offer convenience, eliminate hitches and also fit their lifestyle; which is what e-billing guarantees. Therefore, this initiative was driven largely with interest of customers at the heart of our business”,
He further pointed out that from an environmental perspective, e-billing will help IE take a step towards greater environmental sustainability, and for customers, e-bills will help reduce unwanted clutter and strenuous filings. The e-bills will also enable customers access historical data of their bills including consumption patterns.
The e-billing service is free. The SMS is delivered to the registered phone numbers of customers while PDF bills are delivered to emails submitted by customers. PDF can also be downloaded via the website. The App is currently available on Android and will soon be available on other Operating Systems. There is also a billing portal which customers can access to download their bills on a monthly basis.
Customers can update their contact details by visiting the company’s website, Customer Care Unit or the nearest Ikeja Electric service centres. For customers who do not have contact details on Ikeja Electric website, account managers will ensure all bills delivered to valid contacts provided by such customers.
With the introduction of e-billing system, bills are delivered faster, it helps customers to reduce unwanted clutter of papers in their home, it eliminates manual printing and distribution of bills with all its attendant challenges, the risk of bills being lost in transit or affected by bad weather is also avoided, while it offers electronic tracking of bills delivery. In addition, the e-billing initiative is a step towards greater environmental sustainability. Ikeja Electric’s e-billing initiative is the first in the industry and complies with regulatory requirements.