Broadband connectivity has become a critical component of each and every community across the nation. It’s an essential tool, not just for web access, but for a host of crucial industries from education to healthcare. Providing reliable and efficient broadband service is core for many of our Members, but having effective solutions to back up and enhance your service is just as important. One of those solutions is the NISC User Services System (USS), a powerful, hardware-independent, cloud-based tool, to help enhance your customers’ internet experience while reducing costs. Check out some of the ways USS can increase your broadband efficiency and customer satisfaction! Educate and Empower CustomersCreating a smart home is no longer a vision just for the early-adopting techies in your service area. Many households are adding technology from smart TVs to thermostats to multiple cameras to build a connected home. However, as consumers continue to plug in gadgets and more frequently stream online, the service package they initially subscribed to may no longer fit their needs. Now more than ever, it is key to educate your customers on their usage – and the devices they have affecting it. With the NISC User Services System, you can provide customers the tools necessary to view usage, resolve connectivity issues, set alerts and manage all devices they have connected to their WiFi at any given time. An educated customer is an empowered customer, so place the power of WiFi management in their hands and increase satisfaction through offering self-care options. Troubleshoot Without Truck RollsThe NISC User Services System can also help your organization resolve broadband service interruptions, or even correct them before customers become aware of an issue, by managing the internet gateway and the [...]
Lake Saint Louis, Mo., Oct. 7, 2019 – National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC), a leading provider of software solutions to utility and telecommunication companies, has named Brent Roberts vice president of Research, Development & Quality (RDQ). Roberts has helped lead the development of several enterprise-wide solutions for NISC Members for 30 years, the last 20 years as a manager in the RDQ department. "The selection of Brent as vice president of RDQ continues an important tradition of promoting from within and providing career opportunities for our employees," said Dan Wilbanks, NISC chief operating officer and incoming president and CEO. "Brent has played a role in architecting and leading development for many NISC solutions. He has been a key technical advisor, encouraging us to embrace the latest and best technologies, to adopt secure practices, and to research and explore solutions before they become an immediate need of our Members. Brent is a strategist, and his technical understanding will bring a critical perspective to our executive team." NISC dedicates $50 million annually to research and development. NISC’s RDQ department is responsible for researching the latest in software and technology, and understanding how to develop that software into usable tools that improve how Members do business.
St. Louis, Mo., Sept. 26, 2019 – A record 2,600-plus attendees enjoyed three full days of learning along with a series of memorable moments at National Information Solutions Cooperative's (NISC) 2019 Member Information Conference (MIC), held Sept. 23-26 at the America's Center in St. Louis. Members, partners and employees enjoyed more than 180 sessions on the latest enhancements to NISC solutions, updates on the technology roadmap and discussions of issues facing the utility and telecom industries. This year, a record number of 69 NISC Members led sessions at the MIC, sharing best practices with fellow attendees. In addition, more than 40 exhibiting partners and vendors showcased a variety of solutions and services valuable to Member organizations in the Partner Pavilion, the MIC event hub. Also on hand were NISC subject matter experts at NISC's Consulting Booth and Innovations Lab. "At the heart of the MIC is learning, and each year is incredibly special as it offers us the opportunity to meet face-to-face and collaborate with the NISC Membership," said Vern Dosch, NISC president and CEO. "For me, the best memories are the relationships that have formed and how they've grown over the years. NISC's focus is on preserving those relationships and serving the needs of others. If you visit one of our facilities, you'll see pictures of our Members—linemen, billing clerks, accountants—the people we serve. We do that so our employees never forget who it is that we serve." Several activities and happenings detailed below also served as highlights of the 2019 MIC: NISC unveiled its refreshed brand to Members and partners. The updated logo, designed by NISC employees, reflects the cooperative's history, future and valued relationships.After 17 years at the helm of NISC, Dosch shared [...]
St. Louis, Mo., Sept. 25, 2019 – National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) presented new enhancements to SmartHub, a web and mobile app that puts the power of data into the hands of NISC Members' telecom and utility customers, at the cooperative's 2019 Member Information Conference (MIC), being held Sept. 23-26 in St. Louis, Mo. The SmartHub app and web portal allows customers to pay their bill, view their usage and communicate with their provider anytime, anywhere. This fall, NISC will release a new mobile app user interface that provides a fresh look and a more intuitive, user-friendly experience. Customers will be able to see their usage analysis up front or can contact their organization with the click of a button right from the home screen. Outage and billing alerts will also be displayed on the home screen, making it easy for telecoms and utilities to communicate important information to their customers. Billing, payment and other features that users expect from SmartHub will be more readily available in a new condensed menu. At the 2019 MIC, NISC also launched SmartHub Connect, which allows Members to boost the rollout of new services, like broadband, by making signup easy and enhancing marketing capabilities. "Customer engagement has been a longtime priority for NISC," said David Bonnett, vice president of Product Management for NISC. "SmartHub Connect is another great step in that direction, combining the powerful customer engagement capabilities of our SmartHub tool with the marketing and communications functionality that will help increase the efficiency of rolling out new services." SmartHub Connect allows customers to sign up for new service and receive notifications for additional offerings, all through SmartHub. That information can then be used to help organizations decide the most [...]
Saint Louis, Mo., Sept. 24, 2019 – The tone ranged from wistful reminiscence to excitement for what’s to come at National Information Solution Cooperative's (NISC) Opening General Session of the 2019 Member Information Conference (MIC) Sept. 23 in St. Louis, Mo. This year's MIC, themed "next," is showcasing what's next in emerging technologies and how NISC will continue to help Members overcome industry challenges through innovative solutions and superior support. Vern Dosch, NISC president and CEO, kicked off the annual learning event, NISC's largest to date. Dosch recapped NISC’s history, and shared what’s next for NISC and the electric utility and telecommunications industries during his keynote presentation. "NISC has economies of scale like no other vendor in the industry, and that's really important for us to be able to deliver products to you at a reasonable price," Dosch said. "But it's not just about the products we deliver–it's how we do that. That's why culture is so important to NISC. It’s about virtue, and it's about trust." Dosch gave a nod to the hundreds of Members who provided input and direction for the cooperative earlier in the day as part of the Member Advisory Committees. He also spoke about the continued rollout of role-based iVUE Connect-Multiservice, which helps Members access the information they need quickly, leading to faster resolutions and more efficient daily operations. iVUE Connect – Service and iVUE Connect – Financials are currently available. NISC Unveils New BrandOne year after celebrating NISC's 50th anniversary, Dosch also unveiled an updated brand to lead the cooperative and its Membership into the future. The new logo was designed by NISC employees, with the cooperative's history, future and valued relationships in mind. The red and dark gray [...]
As our industries continue to experience rapid growth and change, we’ve seen great innovation in the ways our Members are connecting with their end-users. From integrating renewables, promoting engagement and prioritizing customer service, our Members are connecting with end-users like never before. That’s why we’re so proud of the 13 NISC Members who were named among J.D. Power’s 2019 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study. This list is a prime example of our Members’ passion for service and commitment to customer care, ensuring the needs of their end-users are always met, but usually exceeded. At NISC, we share that same passion for service excellence in the work we do for our Members. We’re proud to support them in their goals and look forward to continuing to be a partner to them as our industries continue to evolve. Congratulations to our Members on the list: SECO Energy Jackson EMC Sawnee EMC Cobb EMC Pedernales Electric Cooperative CoServ Middle Tennessee EMC Connexus Energy Great Lakes Energy Rappahannock Electric Cooperative Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative South Central Power Lee County Electric Cooperative Click here to learn more about the study and to view the full list of awardees.
Life can be hectic. From trying to balance a career with family needs or making time to go to the gym or meet up with family and friends, the last thing customers want to do is worry about paying their bill. Since 2012, NISC’s SmartHub web and mobile app has been a tool that can help telecom and utility customers manage their account while balancing their other responsibilities and activities. Do your customers know how SmartHub can help them manage their account? If not, NISC’s SmartHub Marketing Kit can help! The new kit, available on the NISC Community, is designed to help NISC’s Members promote the benefits of the web and mobile app. Featuring fresh, eye-catching designs, the kit contains bill inserts, social media materials, videos, banners, posters and other promotional material that will help customers understand the benefits of using SmartHub for their account management. SmartHub not only helps customers but provides added benefits for NISC Members as well. When customers use SmartHub for bill pay, they’re going paperless, saving money on a bill print. They also have a convenient way to view their usage and report service interruptions, while NISC’s Members can send messages with important information. This leads to more efficient customer service, fewer calls and increased customer satisfaction. Download the new SmartHub Marketing Kit today, and start getting the most out of the web and mobile app! Visit smarthubkit.com for more info and to download materials.
Lake St. Louis, Mo., April 23, 2019 – To offer NISC's Members enhanced broadband solutions, National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC), a leading provider of software solutions to utility and telecommunication companies, has acquired Affinegy. Based in Austin, Texas, Affinegy provides cloud-based, service enablement software and connected device management for broadband service providers. Affinegy's secure and scalable solution provides Auto Configuration Server (ACS) Management for customer-premises equipment (CPE) and managed WiFi orchestration for any TR-069 enabled CPE. "NISC has become acquainted with the Affinegy team and discovered we share the same passion for service and delivering world-class information technology solutions," said David Bonnett, NISC vice president of Product Management. "While technological advancement is paramount, the affirmation of sharing the same values was key in this acquisition." "NISC is a cooperative whose mission and vision aligns perfectly with Affinegy's," said Melissa Simpler, Affinegy CEO. "By joining NISC, Affinegy will be a part of an organization that can continue to develop and enhance the technology so that it will continue to meet the needs and demands of the industry well into the future." With this acquisition, NISC launched the NISC User Services System, leveraging the Affinegy product as part of its overall solutions portfolio. The solution can be operated independently, or it can be integrated with NISC's customer care and billing solutions along with NISC's SmartHub web and mobile tools for payment processing and order management. The acquisition marks the next milestone in NISC's iVUE fully integrated Enterprise System, which provides accounting, engineering and customer care functions. Affinegy's solution will integrate across NISC's enterprise platforms and will allow its Members to provide enhanced broadband services to their end consumers/customers. "NISC Members have asked us to provide them with [...]
Orlando, Fla., March 11, 2019 – National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) welcomed more than 600 Members and guests to its 2019 Utility Annual Meeting in Orlando, Fla., held in conjunction with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) TechAdvantage Conference and Expo at the Orange County Convention Center, Orlando. NISC's Board of Directors and executive team conducted the business meeting, where four NISC Board Members were ratified: District 4 - Ron Salyer President at Pioneer Rural Electric Cooperative in Piqua, Ohio District 6 - Wayne Martian General Manager at North Central Electric Cooperative in Bottineau, N.D. District 8 - Jeff Churchwell General Manager at Northeast Louisiana Power Cooperative in Winnsboro, La. District 14 - Harry Barnes Director at 3 Rivers Communications in Fairfield, Mont. The business meeting also recognized former Board Director Mickey Miller of Nolin RECC for his 20+ years of combined service to the CADP and NISC Board of Directors. Carol Wright, President/CEO at Jackson Energy Cooperative in McKee, Ky., will fulfill the remainder of his three-year term for District 3. NISC President and CEO Vern Dosch delivered a keynote address centered on what it means to be a part of the NISC family: value with Membership and solutions with impact. "The focus of NISC is not just development of solutions and services," said Dosch. "We also pride ourselves in the differentiators: the 24/7 support, dedicated business managers and a commitment to collaboration. The relationship between NISC and its Members is truly Membership, amplified." Dosch also announced the acquisition of Electrical Distribution Design, Inc. (EDD), headquartered in Blacksburg, Va. EDD is a private corporation providing advanced engineering modeling software and services to the electric utility and related industries. NISC has been working with [...]
Lake Saint Louis, Mo., March 1, 2019 – To better serve its Members, National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC), a leading provider of software solutions to utility and telecommunication companies, has acquired Electrical Distribution Design, Inc. (EDD). EDD is a private corporation headquartered in Blacksburg, Va., that provides advanced engineering modeling software and services to the electric utility and related industries. NISC has been working with EDD for several years, integrating EDD’s analytics into NISC’s Geographic Information System, Outage Management System and Operations Analytics product offerings. EDD’s commercial software product, DEW, stands apart from others in its ability to deliver near real-time operational analytics for electric utilities. “EDD is a great fit with NISC in both the quality solutions and diligent service they provide their customers,” said Todd Eisenhauer, NISC vice president of Strategy & Operations Solutions. “Driven by new technologies, regulations, and end-user expectations, the utility industry is changing and evolving at a rapid pace. This acquisition will help ensure NISC’s Members are empowered to keep up with that pace by making more-informed decisions at a rate faster than ever before.” “We feel NISC is a natural fit for EDD,” said Dr. Robert Broadwater, EDD chief technology officer. “We’re excited to combine our technology and years of experience with NISC’s large active community in order to enhance our products to the benefit of all NISC’s Members.” With the acquisition, EDD and its 15 employees will become a subsidiary of NISC. About NISCNational Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) is an information technology organization that develops, implements and supports software and hardware solutions for our Members. We deliver advanced solutions, services and support to 832 independent telephone companies, electric cooperatives and other public power entities. NISC is an [...]