EVN - It is not easy to "please" more than 25 million customers

Mr. Van Tien Hung – a Senior Energy Specialist of the World Bank in Viet Nam talked with the reporter of Power Magazine about outcomes of the renovation in business, service activities and efforts to please 25 million customers of EVN.

Mr. Van Tien Hung

Reporter: What do you think about the renovation of EVN from an electricity supplier to an electricity service provider?

Mr. Van Tien Hung: Customer is always a vital factor for a business. We had experienced for a long period working in the system of budget subsidies, centralized planning, supply not sufficient for demand, leading to a situation where customers needed enterprises but enterprises did not pay attention to customers.

Given the fact that the State shifted the economy to the market mechanism, EVN – a State Own Enterprise – had no other way rather than changing itself. I am very happy that for many recent years EVN has oriented their operations towards providing increasingly perfect customer services. Over the past 20 years of working with EVN and power corporations, I have noticed that EVN has grown up tremendously in production - business and customer care services.

Reporter: How has WB supported EVN during its renovation of business and customer service?

Mr. Van Tien Hung: In the face of EVN's transformation, in 2012, the World Bank decided to assist EVN and its power distribution corporations in improving the quality of customer service through a large "Power Distribution Efficiency" project. The project has laid a foundation for reducing power quality indicators such as System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI), System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI), etc. to levels lower than the regulated ones. Through technical assistances, power corporations have established customer service centers, as well as conducted surveys on customer satisfaction.

EVN is "pleasing" over 25 million customers. To please millions of households is not an easy task and EVN has made a lot of efforts during the past time.

In 2013, the average result of customer satisfaction evaluation in five distribution corporations was 6.45 and this figure has gradually increased year by year. By 2017, it was 7.96. The figure says a lot and the result shows a great endeavor of the power sector.

I would like to quote from the letter of the World Bank Country Director to Viet Nam addressed to Vice Minister of Industry and Trade Hoang Quoc Vuong recently after the visit of a high ranking delegation from Senegal for learning from experiences in Viet Nam. "The Viet Nam power sector has become a model for many developing countries around the world in terms of sectoral development and sustainable electricity supply in a reliable manner and with an affordable price for their people".

Electricians of Lam Dong Power Company advise customers how to use electricity safely

Reporter: According to the Doing Business Report 2018 of the World Bank, Viet Nam's getting electricity indicator reached 87.94/100 points, ranked 27th among 190 countries and territories. Do you have any comments on this indicator of Viet Nam?

Mr. Van Tien Hung: It can be said that the getting electricity indicator of Viet Nam can be attributed to the great contribution of EVN. As a pillar in the national energy security, EVN has drastically and synchronously implemented a series of customer service solutions, with a focus on the active adoption of digital technology in providing 100% of electricity services online, equivalent to public service level 3.

In addition, five customer care centers are available 24/7. EVN has taken advantage of live-line working technology, applied automatic power system control technologies, etc. with the aim of improving the reliability of power supply and reducing power interruption time.

In 2018, EVN has actively worked with People's Committees of provinces and central cities to introduce electricity services into Public Administration Centers or connect to public service websites of provinces / cities.

In 2013 when Viet Nam's getting electricity indicator ranked 156th out of 189 countries, the Government of Viet Nam, the Ministry of Industry and Trade, EVN and distribution corporations were very concerned with the question "Why do we have such a poor performance?". With a high determination, EVN and other units have made the most positive progress, after 5 years moving from 156/189 to 27/190 in 2018.

Reporter: Beside these positive achievements, frankly and objectively speaking, in your opinion, what EVN should further improve in their business and customer service area?

Mr. Van Tien Hung: EVN has accomplished a lot, but in my personal point of view, there are two more things that need to be done. One is information disclosure and transparency, the other is the adoption of information technology more intensively in management and business areas. Transparency here I mean the transparency in power tariff, in the methodology of power tariff calculation in order for customers to monitor and check calculation results.

Why every tariff increase faces a strong opposition from consumers? Is power tariff unaffordable? No, it’s not. Because as compared with the price level of other consumer products, even compared with the price of gasoline, Viet Nam's power tariff is lower than other countries in the world. Therefore, what needs to be improved is the communication and information disclosure so that consumers can understand better about power tariff.

As for the adoption of information technology, during the past time, via the “Power Distribution Efficiency” project, EVN has been forming a general framework for smart meters and unmanned distribution substations. However, there are still a lot of works to be done in this area to keep up with the pace of the 4.0 industrial revolution.

Reporter: Thank you!

  • 15/12/2018 04:17
  • evn.com.vn
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