IF THERE is one positive trait of Davao Light and Power Co. that big customers in Panabo City appreciate, it is its responsiveness to the needs of its customers.
Although they also highlight that sometimes the response time in terms of addressing the problem may take longer than expected because the area that the utiity’s emergency team also covers the towns of Carmen, Sto. Tomas and Braulio N. Dujali, they said that calls to its customer assistants most often are picked up immediately.
This is important, they said, considering that Panabo is also the manufacturing hub of the Davao del Norte and the only city in the province that is being serviced by the company as the two others are under the remaining franchise area of Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative, renamed as North Davao Electric Cooperative two years ago.
Panabo, Carmen and Sto. Tomas voted in favor of being serviced by Davao Light in 1976. Braulio Dujali, on the other hand, was carved out of the two towns and became another municipality in 1988.
Engr. Michael Sumalinog, Millennium Specialty Coconut Prods Inc. head of engineering, said that informing the power utility about problems is easy. “They not only understand to address the need to resolve the problem, but they also see to it that you feel important and find ways so that they can immediately respond to your request,” said Sumalinog.
The executive cannot help but compare the utility with another utility in the Davao Region where his former company is located.
“There (the area where his former company is located and which is being served by an electric cooperative), sometimes it would take you a day to get the response that you need, aside from it is also very difficult to get in touch with the customer service representative,” said Sumalinog, who has changed company address since eight years ago.
TAKING CARE OF THE CUSTOMER
Sumalinog, who also served in the same capacity in the previous employment that he had, pointed out that based on his experience with the cooperative, power was unstable especially during the times when Mindanao had a dearth of power sources between 2010 until 2015.
“We had to buy a huge generator set to be able to fill the gap for the lack of power, while at that time Davao Light was able to minimize the lack of power by tapping its standby (40 megawatt Bajada) plant and arranged with owners of generating sets to run their sets during peak hours to address the supply need,” he explained.
He was referring to the interruptible load program where companies with generators run their sets to augment the capacity of the company.
In the case of Leo Balasabas, mall manager of the Gaisano Grand, the power utility has been able to minimize the problem related to electricity in the city.
Balasabas also added that the power company, in its desire to provide a better power supply to the mall, has installed a device that protects it from power fluctuation.
He was referring to a recloser, a small circuit breaker that is usually placed on top of the pole which can isolate a customer. Although he also acknowledged that the same instrument can be used to put off the power to the mall, Balasabas thought the power utility “is not stupid to turn off the power of a company that is among its biggest customers in the city.
Gilberto Mamac, plant superintendent of Davao Packaging Corp., a Floirendo company, said that his employer has been satisfied with how Davao Light has delivered its service.
“It knows how to satisfy its customers,” said Mamac, who has been with the company for about 20 years, as he pointed out that although it would take time for the emergency crew to respond at the most two hours, those taking the calls “are very responsive.”
Mamac added that, although it has its generator, it is very important for his company to immediately get the response of the power provider in case of problems, “because we need to run our generating sets immediately when needed to sustain our operations.”
On the other hand, Rodolfo Saturos, assistant vice president of LTS Malls Inc., said there is a huge difference between Davao Light and other power providers in the region where the company has retail establishments.
“Davao Light ensures that our power supply is stable, but in other areas where we are present that are being serviced by other utilities, power stability is always in question,” said Saturos, citing the case of the company’s mall in Tagum City where “power stability is a challenge.”
Being responsive to the needs of a customer, he said, is a “badge of a company well managed.”
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