Members Give Benton REA An 89 Satisfaction Rating

Comparison of ACSI Scores (from ACSI) - Members give Benton REA and 89 Satisfaction rating, higher than Southwest Airlines, Nike, Apple, Touchstone average, National Co-op Avg., Wal-Mart, Investor-owned avg., Municipal utility avg., DISH Network and Facebook

For the fifth year in a row, Benton REA members gave their electric cooperative an 89 out of 100 rating in the American Customer Satisfaction Index questions included in the annual satisfaction survey.

Each year, Benton REA seeks to understand members’ satisfaction with the cooperative to improve customer service, reliability, and the quality of our programs and services.

In June of 2021, a random selection of 1,500 residential members were invited to participate in the survey. The first 300 participants’ answers were gathered.

This consistent ACSI score indicates Benton REA members have not felt an increase or decrease in overall satisfaction. Although it is a high score, there is room for improvement.

High marks

Benton REA scored highest on the following satisfaction areas:

  • Provides reliable electric service (98%).
  • Friendly and courteous employees (97%).
  • Restores power outages quickly (95%).
  • Knowledgeable and competent employees (94%).
  • Quality customer service (94%).

Room to improve

Although the following scores were still high compared to cooperatives across the country, Benton REA can improve in the following areas:

  • Offers opportunities for member involvement (79%).
  • Offers energy-efficiency programs to help members save money (81%).
  • Supports renewable energy like solar and wind power (82%).
  • Continually looks for ways to improve (82%).

Communication preferences

Benton REA asked four additional questions in this year’s survey, trying to understand the members’ communication preferences.

Ruralite magazine and the High Voltage newsletter were high on the list of areas where members have received information from Benton REA. Yet trends are moving digital.

Email jumped 27% from 2018, into the most-preferred method to receive co-op information. Ruralite and the High Voltage newsletter were second and third respectively, with the co-op’s website,, in fourth.

Members stated energy-efficiency tips and savings is the most important information from Benton REA, followed by clean energy sources and Benton REA’s programs and services.

“Members clearly recognize the need to save energy, and they want Benton REA to show them how,” says Elecia Copenhaver, marketing and communications coordinator. “We will add more energy-efficiency content to our newsletters, website and social media channels based on these survey results.”

More survey respondents are identifying themselves as members or as both a customer and member-owner than survey results show five years ago. National trends indicate people who identify as a member of their electric cooperative have a higher level of satisfaction with their co-op.

Benton REA is a member-owned cooperative. Members who wish to offer suggestions on how Benton REA can improve can do so by calling 509-786-2913. 

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