Natural Gas Customer Field Services

Wednesday, April 19

10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
No Gas? No Problem! Continue to Meet Customers’ Expectations During an Outage.
Speaker: Kris Topp, Manager Operations and Construction, ATCO Gas
Stephen Miller, Analyst I/Customer Engagement/Communications, Southwest Gas Corporation
What is outage management?  Managing an outage goes far beyond the technicians who are restoring service. It’s important to have a solid plan in place to keep your customers properly informed, but are you using all of tools available to you?  In this session, we will explore the importance of an effective outage management plan.  We will discuss how to make a plan, successfully execute it, keep your impacted customers informed and incorporate industry best practices and new ideas into your outage management “tool bag.”

3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Dynamic Dispatching – Efficiencies Gained Through Technology
Speakers: Carie Mourin, Manager, Operations Support and Gas Control, Avista Utilities
Bob Postorino, Manager, Southwest Gas Corporation
Jeff Green, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
As utility companies strive to become more efficient, dispatching practices are being revised more and more. Come and see how some companies are achieving this through work bundling, drip feeding and other dispatch methods.

Thursday, April 20

10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Improving the Customer’s Experience and Meeting Expectations
Speaker: Amy Garten, Washington Gas
David Farschon, Sky Creek
In recent years, service providers have revamped their approaches to customer experience (CX) in an effort to meet customer expectations.  Utilities and other energy providers are adopting new technologies that focus on enhancing CX and increasing customer satisfaction.  In this presentation, we will highlight several innovative approaches that leading service providers have adopted to proactively communicate with customers on service issues and to gather valuable feedback from customers on the performance of frontline employees; and, the positive impacts these approaches have had on operations, service levels, and the customer experience.

1:00 PM – 2:30 PM
Applied Innovation – Maintaining and Growing the Customer Base in a Low Carbon Future
Speaker: Greg Caldwell, Senior Manager, Research and Innovation, ATCO Gas
In this session, we will explore the current challenges utility companies are facing to maintain and grow the business. We will look at the changing market conditions including the development of disruptive technologies, and how government and private action on climate change is and will continue to impact the utility industry.

In addition, we will review case studies of past industry leaders who failed to innovate or react to customer needs in a timely manner, and how we can apply these lessons to ensure the gas distribution industry remains relevant moving forward. Furthermore, we will look at the present utility model and how it’s evolving and what ATCO is doing to grow its customer base and mitigate these risks via their innovation strategy. This will touch on projects such as the hybrid house, Renewable Natural Gas, Heat Meter, distributed Carbon Capture, CHP Gate Station, and Smart Rates.