Williams ranked No. 1 in national gas pipeline customer survey


HOUSTON, Texas, June 6, 2002 — Williams announced recently that its gas pipeline group is ranked No. 1 nationally for overall performance in the annual industry-wide customer survey conducted by independent research firm, Mastio & Company.

Specifically, the Mastio survey ranked Williams No. 1 on overall measures of sales and customer service, ease of doing business, quality of operations, products and services, and company performance (excluding price). Showing strength in both technical areas and relationship building, Williams ranked No. 1 on 15 of the 34 performance measures in the survey and No. 2 on 10 others.

Among technical measures, Williams ranked No. 1 for timely execution of transportation requests, settlement of imbalances, accurate contracts, timely notification prior to restrictions and simple capacity release. Williams also was the leader for quality of customer relationship, accessibility and responsiveness of personnel, formal communications, attitude of continuous improvement, and innovative and forward thinking. The Mastio rankings are based on nearly 1,500 interviews with the full range of natural gas transportation customers including local distribution companies, industrial end-users and power generators.

“The leading companies, like Williams, have actually moved customer satisfaction from a slogan to reality. They have made a commitment to value and are realizing superior growth and profitability because their business strategies focus on enhancing the value of what they offer customers,” commented Bart Thedinger, vice president/senior partner of Mastio & Company. “The simple truth is customers have many choices and leading companies like Williams are making every contact with their customers count. The leading companies realize they must listen and understand customers’ needs, no matter how minor or small these needs appear.”

Doug Whisenant, president and CEO of Williams’ gas pipeline unit, said Williams’ No. 1 ranking is the result of continuous efforts to improve service. “As is stated in our core values and beliefs, `customers are the essence of our business.’ We are continually seeking feedback from our customers, including through our own annual surveys. Based on this feedback, we have taken definitive steps to improve our service. Since we realize customer expectations continually change, even increase, we know that excellent customer service is something we will always be striving for and never fully achieve,” Whisenant said.

Gary Lauderdale, senior vice president, customer service for Williams gas pipeline unit, added that well-trained, committed employees are the key to great service. “Our goal is always to be the transporter of choice in all of our markets by providing the highest quality service with a personal touch. We are proud of these results and will continue striving for improvement across our nationwide service area,” he commented.

Williams’ interstate natural gas pipeline system spans the continental United States with access to major supply areas and energy markets. The company’s gas pipeline operation is based in Houston and has offices in Salt Lake City and Owensboro, Ky.

Mastio & Company is a provider of industrial consumer opinion research for the power and natural gas industries by top companies who realize the value of a satisfied customer. Mastio & Company provides independent third party information for clients who want to truly assess their corporate image, discover their perceived level of customer satisfaction, understand the strengths and weaknesses of competitors, find new customers and supplement their market intelligence. More information about Mastio & Company is available at www.mastio.com

About Williams
Williams moves, manages and markets a variety of energy products, including natural gas, liquid hydrocarbons, petroleum and electricity. Our operations span the energy value chain from wellhead to burner tip. Based in Tulsa, Okla., Williams information is available at www.williams.com.


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