Happy New Year! We do not know about you, but we are glad to see 2020 behind us. To say that it was a crazy year is an understatement. Then again, maybe crazy is not the right word but most would agree it certainly was a year like no other.
COVID-19 prompted behavioral changes all around the world impacting the lives of consumers and businesses alike. At SECO, we instituted a myriad of changes to ensure continued operations with a focus on keeping our workforce healthy and safe. We connected with each other and our members in ways like never before, keeping the lines of communications open to serve you better.
It was not just our behavior that changed – member behavior changed as well. Across the country, online shopping and grocery pickup and delivery hit an all-time high. Consumers made a clear choice to limit interactions whether with people or things. More SECO members than ever before took advantage of online bill payment through the establishment of a SmartHub account. SECO’s Automatic Bank Draft Program also became a popular option this past year. The increase in employees working from home prompted more SECO commercial and industrial account holders to take advantage of electric bill payment options including Automated Clearing House (ACH) or electronic payment.
Today, the trend continues as members have realized the value and added security of eliminating a paper check. Savings is achieved by eliminating the check itself and associated postage in addition to reducing the amount of time to initiate a paper payment. Online options (electronic payments) are also much more secure than a paper check going through the mail.
At SECO, we understand the importance of providing you with several ways to pay your bill. Choosing the best method for your business requires that you have a good understanding of the options available to you. Perhaps you will find the following helpful:
ACH Payment: This type of bank-to-bank payment is similar to a wire transfer but ACH payments are typically free (they are with SECO). Most often a wire transfer involves cost to both the sender and receiver. ACHs are initiated online by the payor (member/consumer) to the payee (SECO Energy). Same-day or delayed payment can be arranged. The National Automated Clearing House Association (NACHA) operating rules govern all ACH transactions (facilitating the movement of money) whether by a bank, business, or John Doe consumer. Several banking system software apps are available to initiate an online payment transaction.
SmartHub: SECO Energy’s online account platform called SmartHub is a good place to start for convenient self-serve options. You can create a profile and view past bills, usage history, and more. Online bill payment is electronic and is fast and easy. Note, even if you choose to not pay your electric account through SmartHub you can still setup an account and enjoy the benefits this option provides.
Automatic Bank Draft: This reoccurring monthly payment option is also available through SmartHub. Setup is easy or if you prefer to contact your Key Account representative, they will be happy to take care of this for you. All we need is your banking information or a cancelled check. Messenger settings are available for advance notification of balance due and draft date.
Paying your bill has never been easier. Whether it is an ACH payment, SmartHub electronic payment or reoccurring bank draft, these options will save you time and money. These options also allow SECO Energy to save by eliminating the handling/processing of paper checks and fees associated with the use of credit cards for payment. Every dollar saved helps us keep your costs of power down and that is of prime importance to us. We know, as a business owner, it is important to you as well. If you have questions or need assistance in setting up a new payment option, reach out to your Key Account Representative today. We are happy to help!