Case Study: Kiosks Provide Access Statewide

When we first contracted with an investor-owned utility in the Southeast United States, we completed a now-legendary (to us) kiosk implementation in six weeks. Covering 80 percent of the state, these payment kiosks increase access to utility services for people who pay their bills in person. The research-driven user interface makes it easy for people to complete transactions quickly, and it is optimized for people with vision impairments or low literacy skills. Kiosks run on secure, cloud-based software so customer payments post to their accounts in real time. 

KIOSK COUNT

80
total kiosks

34
kiosks that offer 24/7 access

The expansive kiosk network is particularly important for people who are cash preferred or un- and underbanked, where in-person payments are the only option to satisfy their monthly bill. For these customers who may be approaching the deadline to pay their bill, a 24/7 kiosk location can mean the difference to avoid facing late fees or service interruption.

“It gives those customers a quicker and easier way to make their payments,” said an accounting manager at the company. “They can just walk up to the kiosk, make their payment, and know that it’s going to process in real time as if they were paying one of the cashiers.”

USAGE

83%
of kiosk customers are repeat users

74%
of transactions made on a 24/7 kiosk

437,000
kiosk transactions made in a one-year period

Although the kiosks are intuitive to use, CityBase also armed the utility company with training guides for utility staff in customer service, like customer greeters at payment centers. These staff helped their customers get comfortable using the new technology, which accelerated adoption rates.

About 83 percent of the kiosk users are now repeat users, up from 64 percent a year ago. “Once the customer uses that kiosk once, they are coming back and using the kiosk the next time they make their payment,” the manager said.

The kiosks initially took cash and checks. Recently, the client updated several machines to take cards, as well. In the first week of allowing card payments on the kiosks, these machines saw 23% of transactions made by card.

AVERAGE TRANSACTION TIMES

39
seconds for checks

68
seconds for cash



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